Like it or not, to move products or services, you must market your marketing. SEO professionals and Internet marketing consultants don’t always agree on SEO pricing and budgeting, but on average the SEO budget recommendation works out to 4 – 5 times the cost of the website. In other words, if a company’s annual website re-design/webmaster maintenance/content update budget is $10,000.00, SEO and other Internet marketing should be between $40,000.00 and $50,000.00.
Preposterous you say? Many years ago I prepared the newspaper ads for a small music retail outlet. They paid me about $80.00 a week to layout a 1/2 page ad for the weekend paper. Running the ad was $4,800.00 that week. An ad agency writes, then story boards and shoots a commercial for $100,000.00, but the air time can cost millions. One of my clients currently forks over $1,200.00 per month for a Yellow Pages ad that probably cost fifty bucks to layout on the computer. A flyer may cost $400.00 to design, but $15,000 to mail out. The big money has always been in the distribution; not the media. When you look at the media-to-distribution ratios of other marketing vehicles, SEO is seriously cheap!
Most website owners have it exactly in reverse. They’ll invest only a paltry 5 to 10% into SEO and other Internet marketing. The results will almost certainly be disappointing. The most drop-dead-gorgeous Webby-award-winning website without traffic is like having Clio-awarded 4 color process (with varnish accents, die cutting and embossing of course) brochures stacked neatly in boxes in the storage closet, where they remain forever. How important are the aesthetics of the website very few eyeballs are viewing?
Small companies often feel they can’t afford to invest in SEO. They’ll build a budget site for three or four thousand and then throw a few dollars after it with a $19.95 site submission package or perhaps a $49.95 link building bundle. When that fails to generate business, they'll throw more into the website, of all things. If they really only had a 3K budget, what they should have done was invest $500.00 into the site and $2,500.00 into SEO and Internet marketing, developing the articles and backlinks that provide a top-5 ranking on Google, Yahoo Search and MSN Search. Even a butt-ugly website (while not recommended) with a steady flow of qualified traffic will always outperform a sexy site with little or no visitors. A website without traffic will only add to overhead.
Your Vancouver SEO experts at the Cole Wiebe Agency, offer monthly SEO plans at very affordable rates. Even a small company can afford six to nine months of aggressive SEO to begin driving traffic to their site.
November 17, 2013: A lot has changed since 2007, when this post was written. Please view these newer posts:
How Much Should SEO Cost?
Cost of SEO: Why Is Great SEO So Expensive?
SEO Rates: How Come SEOs Charge so Much?