I’m sure you have heard of the phrase “You get what you pay for.” This is true with SEO.
But, you might be saying “but I found someone in India who is offering an SEO package for $200 a month.” My reply to that is: Do you know what you are getting for that $200? It becomes a little complicated when you compare a US-based service vs one based out of India. Sure, cost of labor is much cheaper in India, but like most services, there are pros and cons.
You may get a cheaper SEO price in India, but chances are your campaign will also suffer on quality and you may deal with a slew of communication issues. Although most Indian companies speak English, their English is not 100% in line with American English. This can create issues when communicating your instructions to them. Also, because proper grammar is such a vital part of writing articles and adding content to your site, you shouldn’t risk your content on less than sub-par English. In addition, the time zone differences can be frustrating at times because you can’t reach your campaign manager to discuss your projects by phone or chat in real time.
That’s only the communication issues. What about work quality? What will the SEO company be doing for you? Will you be paying $200 for automated directory submissions or article submissions to blog networks? I hope not. Will they be using outdated, ineffective SEO techniques? Possibly. You never know. This is where knowledge and experience comes in. You need to ask questions and require that the SEO company provide status reports.
Trust is another big factor. Even with fancy proposals and convincing sales pitches, you need to look past that and go with your instincts as someone you can trust.
So why is SEO so pricey?
There are several reasons why SEO is expensive in most of the developed countries.
1. Cost of living is higher for SEO companies and individuals in developed countries. As a result, they have to charge higher prices to make a living.
2. SEO is not the same as it used to be. It takes a lot more time and energy. So, this means that companies have to use more resources to produce the same amount of results (as before). In other words, since more time is spent on each client, SEO companies have to charge more for the work to make up for less clients.
3. Less cookie-cutter, more customized approach. Today, an SEO’s job is much more involved than it was 7-10 years ago. You can’t simply do directory and article submissions and hope to rank #1. You need to stop using outdated techniques. Now, you have to look at the big picture. You have to have a good understanding of the business and have a sensible strategy going forward. You have to wear different hats, including business development, content creation, writing, and even some knowledge in programming.
A good SEO company/individual understands that every business and industry is different, so a customized strategy is the best one to take.
Hopefully, that explains why there is such a huge disparity between the prices of SEO. I know as small business owners, you are counting every dollar, but you have to think of SEO as an investment, not an expense. The SEO work you do today, brings you the rewards tomorrow. Your website is an appreciating asset, just like real estate. As you fix it up and invest in it, the more value gets added. Your domain name and website is your real estate on the Internet.