Why should someone need money to do Seo?

19 replies
Hi,
I have a really stupid question.
Why should I ask for a monthly fee for doing SEO for a company? I mean how can I justify the price?
Do you use the monthly fee to purchase banners and links on high PR sites so the site gets better indexed?
Do you use them to create backlinks in high PR directories?
Do you use them to hire people to create monthly backlinks?
Do you ask them because you studied on it before doing it? (which seems reasonable to me).

I would also be curios of how much net profit would I be making with a 500$/monthly SEO plan, for example. (What are the costs?)

Thank you in advance.
Andrea
#money #seo
  • Profile picture of the author s62731
    Hi Andrea,

    When it comes to justifying the price, it has absolutely nothing to do with the costs to you or what your margins are. You're not a convenience store selling the exact same item as your competitor.

    Sure, other people offer SEO, but you can position your SEO to be much more valuable than your competitions.

    You justify price by the VALUE and OUTCOME that you deliver. Nothing else.

    So what's the outcome your clients will get, and what will that do for them? How does that help them? How much more money will they make?

    If you're charging $500 a month, they need to 100% believe they will make more than $500 a month back.

    Now in terms of how much it costs to deliver SEO? I have no clue, hopefully someone else can chime in on that one.
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    • Profile picture of the author Michael Nguyen
      As Jason Kanigan says, you need to monetize your solution before you get to that, you need to ask intelligent questions to build "ammo" before you submit a proposal.

      Assuming your site looks good, good product, good service, good price
      Say this.

      1. Keywords x gets 1000 per month on Google
      2. Your website is nowhere to be found in Google
      3. What is your transaction value? $2,000 for each new client
      4. If your website gets to number 1 in Google, about 20% of the total searches will visit your site.
      5. This means 200 different prospects in front of your business
      6. Out of that 200 visits 20% will enquire which will be 40 leads / calls
      7. Out of that 40 leads 20% will turn to jobs = 8 jobs
      8. 8 jobs at $2000 each $16,000
      9. "Mr prospect, our program will get you leads and the investment for this is only $1,600pm. We can assure you'll receive results within 3 months. Lets do this!"

      That's how you monetize SEO, forget selling rankings (that's what the client may want and he may have an initial figure to pay, which is probably small) but when you re-frame it like this, you're now a serious SEO provider because you can demonstrate return on investment. Whether or not you can do the job is now based on your salesman ship, proof, skills etc but that is how you justify your fees.

      You do the above our you can just sell link packages for $50...
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      • Profile picture of the author Andrea Rillo
        Originally Posted by Michael Nguyen View Post

        As Jason Kanigan says, you need to monetize your solution before you get to that, you need to ask intelligent questions to build "ammo" before you submit a proposal.

        Assuming your site looks good, good product, good service, good price
        Say this.

        1. Keywords x gets 1000 per month on Google
        2. Your website is nowhere to be found in Google
        3. What is your transaction value? $2,000 for each new client
        4. If your website gets to number 1 in Google, about 20% of the total searches will visit your site.
        5. This means 200 different prospects in front of your business
        6. Out of that 200 visits 20% will enquire which will be 40 leads / calls
        7. Out of that 40 leads 20% will turn to jobs = 8 jobs
        8. 8 jobs at $2000 each $16,000
        9. "Mr prospect, our program will get you leads and the investment for this is only $1,600pm. We can assure you'll receive results within 3 months. Lets do this!"

        That's how you monetize SEO, forget selling rankings (that's what the client may want and he may have an initial figure to pay, which is probably small) but when you re-frame it like this, you're now a serious SEO provider because you can demonstrate return on investment. Whether or not you can do the job is now based on your salesman ship, proof, skills etc but that is how you justify your fees.

        You do the above our you can just sell link packages for $50...
        Okay thank you both for the answers but what if I fail in delivering the results?
        I was thinking about "give me 3 months to get you to X position or I will give your moneys back". I never have taken money if I didn't do a good job.
        Plus, is there really no way to get on first pages of google ranking with moneys? I mean does money really don't give me any advantage?
        I'm not sure about that because let's suppose I would like to get on the first page of google with the keyword "Coca Cola". I know this is utopic thinking because probably the first websites have like billions of backlinks but let's suppose I recreate all the backlinks manually in 10 years. Will I really get there? Or is there something that I don't know yet?
        I'm studying "advanced" SEO since a month in order to be sure that I can provide my customers the best SEO quality (even if I am ranking them locally so maybe that high advanced seo is not required).
        The tools that I am using are Market samurai (for keyword research) and ahrefs for competitive info sniffing .

        Thank you to both.
        Hope you will answer again
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  • Profile picture of the author Peter Lessard
    Before you take money from anyone simply build and rank your own sites. This will give you experience, confidence and you will have sites you can use to test different strategies.
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    Ready to generate the next million in sales? The Next Million Agency
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  • Profile picture of the author steffanmax
    haha this is why i will never spend a dime on SEO..
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    • Profile picture of the author Andrea Rillo
      Originally Posted by steffanmax View Post

      haha this is why i will never spend a dime on SEO..
      If you studied for countless hours in order to be able to get in the first positions of google yourself then go for it . I'm fine with the idea that knowledge must be paid good and I don't find this sounding "sketchy" or "scammy".
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      • Profile picture of the author savidge4
        SEO is an art. SEO is NOT just the stuff you see when you are looking at the web from your browser, it includes the code that makes that page display in the first place. Beyond just the page you are working on, there are outside variables as well.

        To its absolute core SEO is Math. The easy part is executing the math on and off the page. The HARD part is figuring out the equation to begin with.

        The Path to understanding how to make SEO work for yourself and others is absolute trial and error. I personally have over 1000 website that I have access to that I use as a testing ground and benchmark. To be successful at SEO this is literally what you need. Basically a huge set of data that you can gauge points of gain and points of loss to determine a best plausible path.

        You simply don't read a couple of articles and succeed at SEO. You don't outsource your SEO for a $100 a month and succeed at SEO. I would even say in MOST cases you cant spend $1000 a month and succeed in SEO. Most companies and or individuals search and or follow a set plan #1 Image Titles, #2 Image Tags etc. And sure there are SEO "Best Practices", but all the "Best Practices" I have ever seen on the net are generalizations at best.

        You have to remember you are playing with a math equation. The adjustments you make for 500 words of text and 2 images is far different than what you do for 500 words of text and 4 images.

        To give you an example... I have a "Theory" that I call the 1.8% rule. If you were to have 500 words of Text and 1 image, you need your primary keyword to have a saturation of 1.8% of the text count Looking at the 1.8% from the source code side of the page. 1.8% of 500 happens to be 9 by the way. So below I will break that down real fast.
        1. Keyword in the URL
        2. Keyword in the description Tag
        3. Keyword in the title tag
        4. keyword using H1 tag on the top of the text
        5. Keyword in the Image title
        6. Keyword in the image tag
        7. Keyword in the first line of the text
        8. Keyword mid way thru the text ( as close to center as you can )
        9. Keyword as close to the end of the text as you can get.
        Before anyone opens their mouth and says oh that's old school or whatever... Pick a longtail keyword and try it your damn self.

        So that is the basics of "On Page" SEO... tell me you have read that anywhere else.

        Once you can work that simple model THEN you can start progressing. Reading about "Advanced" principles of SEO before you understand the absolute basics is like taking Calculus the semester after you just failed algebra class. You are getting W A Y ahead of yourself.

        Now, as I said the above model is the basic principles laid out. To go to the next step you need to look at the source code specifically. If you goto a site and right click and select 'View source' you will see down the left the lines of code are numbered by rows.

        Where the elements above fall into this, is a factor in the rankability of a page. If on your page that you are working on the Title and Description tag fall in at around line 40 ( this is where usually these tags fall using wordpress ), you will probably not get a #1 ranking. If those tags fall in below 10 there is a chance.

        If the body of text falls in around line 400 you wont get a #1 ranking. But if its in say line 70 you stand a chance.

        This type of detail repeats itself over and over. Learning this, and more importantly learning how to manipulate the code to get "Optimal" results IS the art of SEO.

        So to answer your question about determining worth of SEO service... as you can see above... you will never get what its TRULY worth. You simply are dealing with way to many people that think "haha this is why i will never spend a dime on SEO" And I really cant blame that thinking because people get into this thinking they can make money, but don't have a clue what they are doing.


        A SOLID SEO strategy is literally priceless. Like MRomeo has stated the only time he does it for a client, is if they are long standing... other than that, he does it for his own projects only. I personally employ basic strategies for my clients and implement far more advanced SEO techniques for my own personal use.
        Signature
        Success is an ACT not an idea
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        • Profile picture of the author Andrea Rillo
          Originally Posted by savidge4 View Post

          SEO is an art. SEO is NOT just the stuff you see when you are looking at the web from your browser, it includes the code that makes that page display in the first place. Beyond just the page you are working on, there are outside variables as well.

          To its absolute core SEO is Math. The easy part is executing the math on and off the page. The HARD part is figuring out the equation to begin with.

          The Path to understanding how to make SEO work for yourself and others is absolute trial and error. I personally have over 1000 website that I have access to that I use as a testing ground and benchmark. To be successful at SEO this is literally what you need. Basically a huge set of data that you can gauge points of gain and points of loss to determine a best plausible path.

          You simply don't read a couple of articles and succeed at SEO. You don't outsource your SEO for a $100 a month and succeed at SEO. I would even say in MOST cases you cant spend $1000 a month and succeed in SEO. Most companies and or individuals search and or follow a set plan #1 Image Titles, #2 Image Tags etc. And sure there are SEO "Best Practices", but all the "Best Practices" I have ever seen on the net are generalizations at best.

          You have to remember you are playing with a math equation. The adjustments you make for 500 words of text and 2 images is far different than what you do for 500 words of text and 4 images.

          To give you an example... I have a "Theory" that I call the 1.8% rule. If you were to have 500 words of Text and 1 image, you need your primary keyword to have a saturation of 1.8% of the text count Looking at the 1.8% from the source code side of the page. 1.8% of 500 happens to be 9 by the way. So below I will break that down real fast.
          1. Keyword in the URL
          2. Keyword in the description Tag
          3. Keyword in the title tag
          4. keyword using H1 tag on the top of the text
          5. Keyword in the Image title
          6. Keyword in the image tag
          7. Keyword in the first line of the text
          8. Keyword mid way thru the text ( as close to center as you can )
          9. Keyword as close to the end of the text as you can get.
          Before anyone opens their mouth and says oh that's old school or whatever... Pick a longtail keyword and try it your damn self.

          So that is the basics of "On Page" SEO... tell me you have read that anywhere else.

          Once you can work that simple model THEN you can start progressing. Reading about "Advanced" principles of SEO before you understand the absolute basics is like taking Calculus the semester after you just failed algebra class. You are getting W A Y ahead of yourself.

          Now, as I said the above model is the basic principles laid out. To go to the next step you need to look at the source code specifically. If you goto a site and right click and select 'View source' you will see down the left the lines of code are numbered by rows.

          Where the elements above fall into this, is a factor in the rankability of a page. If on your page that you are working on the Title and Description tag fall in at around line 40 ( this is where usually these tags fall using wordpress ), you will probably not get a #1 ranking. If those tags fall in below 10 there is a chance.

          If the body of text falls in around line 400 you wont get a #1 ranking. But if its in say line 70 you stand a chance.

          This type of detail repeats itself over and over. Learning this, and more importantly learning how to manipulate the code to get "Optimal" results IS the art of SEO.

          So to answer your question about determining worth of SEO service... as you can see above... you will never get what its TRULY worth. You simply are dealing with way to many people that think "haha this is why i will never spend a dime on SEO" And I really cant blame that thinking because people get into this thinking they can make money, but don't have a clue what they are doing.


          A SOLID SEO strategy is literally priceless. Like MRomeo has stated the only time he does it for a client, is if they are long standing... other than that, he does it for his own projects only. I personally employ basic strategies for my clients and implement far more advanced SEO techniques for my own personal use.
          I 100% agree with you. Anyway maybe I appeared like a completely noob but I know something about SEO. I mean I did it basically for many years but a very basic SEO (just the basic things that you mentioned like putting the correct keyword in title, meta description and so on). What I was asking here is if money gives an advantage to companies which want to get in the first positions.
          For example, if I pay like 5000$ a month to a really high PR website to link my website on it and then I get a better position on google, shouldn't this be considered as an advantage?(for me in this case which I have more money compared to who has 0 and do all manually with free web directory websites).

          Anyway, I know how to code my own website and how to edit the code behind it. I usually develop my website with wordpress because it seems really SEO friendly (I'm using the Yoast Wordpress SeO plugin which do a great job).

          These are some of the websites which I have developed :
          Gianni Art Tattoo | Tatuaggi Gianni art Torino – Lo studio di tatto torinese di Giovanni Borello (last one)
          Macelleria Marco e Elisa
          Drone Vision Italia | Dronevision Italia
          Girarrosto Sanpaolo : da zio Hani | Girarrosto Sanpaolo
          Etc.

          Anyway thank you for the answers. There are some really great advices there (such as the 1.8% thing that I didn't know about and the #line of code# importance for SEO).
          You are great!
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  • Profile picture of the author MWatson
    ALL SEO IS NOT CREATED EQUAL. There's tons of reliable sellers, but unfortunately the scams are right up there with them. For a $500 monthly budget, you should have a very good outcome. A good place to start looking for sellers is the warriors for hire section. Good luck,


    Mark
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    • Profile picture of the author Andrea Rillo
      Originally Posted by MWatson View Post

      ALL SEO IS NOT CREATED EQUAL. There's tons of reliable sellers, but unfortunately the scams are right up there with them. For a $500 monthly budget, you should have a very good outcome. A good place to start looking for sellers is the warriors for hire section. Good luck,


      Mark
      I think you didn't really get my point. I DON'T want to buy SEO. I want to do SEO myself by purchasing strategically banners or links on high PR websites. That's what SEO is (in a little part). I guess it could be called media buying. I don't want someone to do it for me.
      I want to create my own backlinks (some paid some made by myself free) and code optimization made by myself. I don't want anyone to do SEO for me. I want to do it.
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      • Profile picture of the author iAmNameLess
        Originally Posted by steffanmax View Post

        haha this is why i will never spend a dime on SEO..
        Yep and rightly so... I can never blame a business owner for seeing it as a scam because in 99% of the situations, it is a scam.

        Originally Posted by Terminator3018 View Post

        I think you didn't really get my point. I DON'T want to buy SEO. I want to do SEO myself by purchasing strategically banners or links on high PR websites. That's what SEO is (in a little part).
        That is most definitely NOT what SEO is... not even close.
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        • Profile picture of the author Andrea Rillo
          Originally Posted by iAmNameLess View Post

          Yep and rightly so... I can never blame a business owner for seeing it as a scam because in 99% of the situations, it is a scam.



          That is most definitely NOT what SEO is... not even close.
          Ok, my bad then. If you can then, please explain me what is your starting point when doing SEO.

          I'll explain down there what I do and worked before for me (on low competiton terms) :

          1- Generating and Uploading sitemaps on google,yahoo,bing,etc..
          2- Creating google plus, facebook fan page, youtube videos and so on for the company.
          3- Indexing the company on google map, yahoo local and so on.
          4- If possible, create a blog inside the website in order to index more keywords.
          5- Backlink creation on different sites (which talks about my same topic or could help me boost up my ranking).
          6- Directory listing submission.
          7- Analyzing the keywords (I'm using market samurai to get traffic volumes, awcpc and so on).
          8- Take care of the code (using a good domain, good title, good keywords, meta description, meta title, and so on).
          9- Analyze the competition (what are my competitors backlinks? I then do the same backlinks they have plus add some news).
          10- Media buying (maybe that's not SEO (as Iamnameless says) but it helped me ranking a website better since the site where I purchased the banner had a good PR and it helped boosting my website up the rankings).


          What of these steps do you think should be avoided? Am I doing good? Or should I do/know something else?

          Thanks for your answers.
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          • Profile picture of the author iAmNameLess
            Originally Posted by Terminator3018 View Post

            Ok, my bad then. If you can then, please explain me what is your starting point when doing SEO.

            I'll explain down there what I do and worked before for me (on low competiton terms) :

            1- Generating and Uploading sitemaps on google,yahoo,bing,etc..
            2- Creating google plus, facebook fan page, youtube videos and so on for the company.
            3- Indexing the company on google map, yahoo local and so on.
            4- If possible, create a blog inside the website in order to index more keywords.
            5- Backlink creation on different sites (which talks about my same topic or could help me boost up my ranking).
            6- Directory listing submission.
            7- Analyzing the keywords (I'm using market samurai to get traffic volumes, awcpc and so on).
            8- Take care of the code (using a good domain, good title, good keywords, meta description, meta title, and so on).
            9- Analyze the competition (what are my competitors backlinks? I then do the same backlinks they have plus add some news).
            10- Media buying (maybe that's not SEO (as Iamnameless says) but it helped me ranking a website better since the site where I purchased the banner had a good PR and it helped boosting my website up the rankings).


            What of these steps do you think should be avoided? Am I doing good? Or should I do/know something else?

            Thanks for your answers.
            I think you understand the concept of SEO for the most part but just made a mistake calling media buying SEO. It's not SEO, and in fact if done the wrong way it will hurt your rankings. When you buy links or banner ads and they are NOT nofollow that is against Google's webmaster policy and many times people have been hit with penalties from it.

            When doing media buys, your goal is not related to SEO, your goal is brand awareness, ROI, customer acquisition, etc.

            My SEO strategy is usually a bit more technical, but not necessary for low competition. In fact, for low competition I rarely have to do more than proper on page optimization.

            I think market samauri is kind of a waste but I guess it's okay. I just don't believe that individual keywords really matter anymore, it's more about keyword topics not exact match keywords for SEO. I also think analyzing the competition includes MUCH more than just looking at the backlinks. In fact, that is probably one of the last things I look at when evaluating the competition.
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            • Profile picture of the author Andrea Rillo
              Originally Posted by iAmNameLess View Post

              I think you understand the concept of SEO for the most part but just made a mistake calling media buying SEO. It's not SEO, and in fact if done the wrong way it will hurt your rankings. When you buy links or banner ads and they are NOT nofollow that is against Google's webmaster policy and many times people have been hit with penalties from it.

              When doing media buys, your goal is not related to SEO, your goal is brand awareness, ROI, customer acquisition, etc.

              My SEO strategy is usually a bit more technical, but not necessary for low competition. In fact, for low competition I rarely have to do more than proper on page optimization.
              You are right. I wrote "low competition" just because I didn't try these strategies on high competition keywords but I think they could have worked good on high competition keywords as well.

              Thank you for your advice. I will stick away from media buying then (if I need to do a good SEO on a site).
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              • Profile picture of the author iAmNameLess
                Originally Posted by Terminator3018 View Post

                Thank you for your advice. I will stick away from media buying then (if I need to do a good SEO on a site).
                Media buying is great, but you want customers... not improved SEO.

                The problem most people have when it comes to SEO is that they focus too much on SEO. The best SEO strategy is one that is implemented as branding and marketing, not just for SEO.

                I personally will never build a backlink unless that backlink can be used to bring in potential leads.
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                • Profile picture of the author savidge4
                  There is an aspect of SEO that uses Private Blog Networks ( PBN ) With this model you basically "Control" the back linking to your site. Especially after the most recent update that smacked people around for poor quality back linking this model has come to the forefront of the SEO world. The unfortunate side of this model has been in Googles cross hairs for years now, and there are more than a few indications that the end is near to the very basic PBN structures at the very least.

                  If you really did some research on how to develop one of these you could very easily get a decent smaller sized PBN in place for less than $1000 total.

                  I personally use PBN's. I tend to keep this for my own use. To use a structure like this in the market I work within, would be overkill.

                  With Power comes responsibility. If you have the ability to throw six PR6 links at a site so you can be #1 for "Coca Cola" That's great... BUT Google is not blind to what is going on. At some point, not only will the site that is #1 get tagged, so will the links pointing to it.

                  The #1 killer of an SEO strategy is to become the mathematically exception when it comes time for an update. Basically the lower your profile, and differing your method from what appears to be the norm is something to aim for.
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  • This is a good question.

    First of all, I do believe that the model of providing SEO Services these days is flawed (both for client and agency).

    The main problem stems around SEO being so darn difficult these days. Even the best SEO agencies can struggle with ranking for competitive terms, and like you said, there are no guarantees.

    Sure, if SEO is being done for a bigger business, and in a competitive niche then of course, they will want to spend $500+ for SEO, but the problem arises when smaller local businesses want SEO doing for them, and they don't have much money.

    Or, if they do have the money, will it be worth it for them? Will they make a profit?

    And like I said before, there is no guarantee of top rankings so it's a risk.

    And from the SEO Consultants perspective, if you don't charge enough then it's probably not worth your time.

    Choose your clients carefully!
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  • Profile picture of the author MrFume
    You are joking right?
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    The whole basis of what we do as human beings is based on Communication, nothing would be possible otherwise. I work with communication, publishing on the Web, digital media.
    Digital Media for a Noisy World

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    • Profile picture of the author Andrea Rillo
      Originally Posted by MrFume View Post

      You are joking right?
      Who is the message referred to NickWebTrafficLounge or me?
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