The pandemic pushed most of the remaining holdouts of the approximately 32.5 million US small businesses online. While a savvy and likely business-preserving move for most of them, it also means an even more intense fight online for customer attention.

Any business that plans on keeping its current customers or attracting more of them online must depend on a range of digital marketing strategies. The one that most businesses start with and one that’s routinely outsourced is SEO.

Asking yourself, “How much does SEO cost?” If you are or you’re wondering about the nature and benefits of SEO, keep reading. We’ll cover the SEO essentials and some general costs.

What Is SEO?

Running a good website and, by extension, a good online business isn’t a solo effort. You must deal with the gatekeepers that are search engines. It’s the search engines that decide how your pages rank.

Rank well and your online business thrives. Rank poorly and you’ll struggle.

Since search engines depend on content, they provide guidance on what they want to see on websites. Search engine optimization is applying that guidance.

Benefits of SEO

SEO offers a few important benefits. At the top of the list for most website owners is a boost in your page ranks. Pages that rank well get more traffic, which typically converts into more leads or more direct sales.

SEO can go beyond that core benefit and help you target specific customer groups with careful keyword selection and content decisions. SEO is also a long-term approach to generating traffic and business, rather than a short-term approach like paid advertising.

SEO Services

When businesses outsource their SEO needs, they outsource those needs to SEO services. These services provide can provide many different kinds of individual services, such as:

  • Content creation
  • Copywriting
  • Local SEO
  • Reputation management
  • Link building

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How Much Does SEO Cost?

Since SEO companies provide a variety of different services, it’s difficult to pin down exact pricing. The price often depends on which services you choose, your industry, and even your location.

A business in a highly competitive industry that’s located in a major city will pay more than a similar business in a less competitive market.

SEO companies also offered different models, such as hourly, project-based pricing, and retainers. Retainers are probably the most common approach and typically fall in the $2500 to $5000 per month range.

SEO and You

The how much does SEO cost question may look like one that should come with a fixed dollar amount answer. The reality is that pricing for SEO is almost always customized to some level.

The company must factor in things like your industry, your location, and the specific services you select. If you want a completely hands-off experience with SEO, expect a much high price than if you want a single service performed on a month-to-month basis.

Looking for more online marketing tips? Check out some of the posts over in our Business and Digital Tech categories.

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