How Much Does SEO Cost?

  • December 6, 2022
  • SEO
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how much does seo cost

Almost every website/business owner in the world knows about the importance of SEO. Without proper SEO efforts, it’s almost impossible to rank on top of search results and gain newer customers. But, SEO requires you to spend money. So, you need to know how much does SEO cost, and if it’s worth bearing the costs.

How Much Does SEO Cost?  Is SEO Expensive?

You can do a little bit of work by yourself to see how much SEO efforts you need. There are tools out there that conduct the technical SEO audit of your site for free or for a small fee. They can help you understand how much work is needed for your website. 

There are also tools that can help you do a little bit of optimization. But to make sure your website ranks at the top, you need dedicated SEO teams. Tools can only help you out so much. Dedicated professionals can completely turn the shape of your website around. 

Even the SEO teams rely on tools to identify all the problems in a website, but you can’t fix them with the help of the tools. 

SEO optimization is a long process, and it can cost you too much. But compared to the results that you’ll get with these SEO services are definitely greater than the cost. Granted, you choose an SEO agency that knows what they’re doing.

SEO Audit – A Necessary Step In the SEO Process

The first step that any SEO agency will take is to conduct an SEO audit of your website. Without an audit its almost impossible to figure out which steps to take for improvement. 

A technical SEO audit will provide crucial information on problem points in a website. Solving these problem points would automatically push the website towards improvement. 

Before working to improve the positioning of the website, an audit is absolutely necessary. An audit is an essential cost to bear for any business/website owner. It paves the path for any and all future SEO activities.

As a digital marketing agency, we help businesses reduce the costs that they have to bear with a free site audit

Keep in mind, there are SEO agencies out there who will push for a technical audit just so they can make some additional money. Here are some insights on different kinds of audits:

  • Blogging websites and personal blogs require minimal auditing. SEO agencies throw around a lot of technical terms at clients to confuse them and generate huge incomes. 
  • Websites without a mobile version will show thousands of issues during an audit. Fixing all these issues can be expensive, so make sure to choose an SEO agency that can show you the reason behind this cost.
  • Auditing eCommerce stores is a major challenge. It takes a lot of time and effort to do the audit and come up with a comprehensive report. If an SEO agency includes an eCommerce SEO audit in the cost, it’s probably worth the effort.

SEO audit may add up costs in the plan, but it is well worth it. 

How Soon Can I See Results With SEO?

Most businesses have a concern with SEO agencies. That is the time taken in SEO activities and subsequent results. If you’re also postponing your SEO services need because of the time concern, then you should know that the results are worth the cost. 

While SEO is a time-taking process, it often delivers results that keep generating income for a long time. The amount you invest in it keeps on generating results even after the process is over.

On average, SEO starts generating results within the first 3 months, and these results amplify as time goes on. 

SEO Is a Continuous Process – True or False?

Every SEO agency calls SEO a never-ending process. It is kind of the truth. While SEO efforts generate results for a lot of time. Eventually, these results would fade away. So, to keep generating results over and over again you need continuous SEO efforts. 

Your website requires constant optimization, be it meta titles, descriptions, keywords, headers, images, source code, or anything else. 

Once you start generating great results, SEO efforts become all about maintaining and growing the results, while simultaneously taking care of errors that pop up out of nowhere. 

Dedicated SEO resources make sure that the content that is unique, and useless code is removed, the website is optimized for mobile and other devices, and more. One of the biggest factors in attaining rankings in SEO is generating new and quality content. 

This content needs to be optimized so search engines can read the content and provide a ranking accordingly. 

How Much Does SEO Cost?

There’s no cost fits all methodology in SEO. It all comes down to the type of website you have, and the level of effort needed. SEO costs for a blogging website will be different than an eCommerce store. 

If you’re wondering how much does SEO cost? We can help you out. You can reach out to us, or get in touch with us here.

Cost of SEO Today vs 10 Years Ago

Type of SEOCost of SEO
Starter SEO Plan$400 – $2,500 per month
Mid-Range SEO Plan$2,500 – $10,000 per month
Top Tier SEO Plan$10,000 – $25,000 per month
Enterprise Level SEO Plan$25,000 – 100,000 per month

If you want genuine, quality results from SEO, you should expect to pay a good amount. You can’t rank and grow your website with just cheap directories and article submissions. 

In today’s time, you need a comprehensive SEO strategy if you wish to attain top rankings. Based on where you live, the type of your website, the quality of work you want to do, the desired results, and other factors, the cost of SEO can go up or down. 

You can get SEO services for just $100 per month as well, but the chances of them delivering any viable result are limited. 

An ideal SEO agency will develop amazing content for you, optimize your website’s speed, enhance user experience, and so much more.  Doing all of this at the same time can generate quality results that stay there for a long time. 

If you’re comparing SEO agencies, make sure to compare what they’re offering in their packages. Most low-level packages don’t include a link-building strategy. Even though link building is the primary ranking factor for any business. 

According to a new survey conducted by Ahrefs, the average cost of an SEO agency in the USA is somewhere between $2,500 – $5,000.

Countries like India, Bangladesh, Pakistan, and other Asian regions countries have a much lower average for these services. 

Compared to 10 years ago, the average cost of SEO has gone up. 10 years ago, you could high-end SEO services for half the cost. The reason is simple, there was minimal competition, and the number of activities needed to be done was also limited. 

SEO has changed drastically over the decade, resulting in additional efforts and increased SEO costs. 

Common SEO Cost Structure

Depending on the SEO agency you hire, the pricing structure will vary differently. There are 3 primary SEO pricing models:

  1. SEO Pricing Per Hour

When you’re looking for SEO services for your business, you will come across the per-hour pricing model. This SEO cost structure is used by freelance SEO experts, individuals, and even some agencies. You’ll be expected to pay the amount they’ve spent working on your project. 

Small businesses often use this model as they can’t afford to pay too much money for SEO services. SEO agencies that offer this pricing model tend to do this to increase their clientele. 

  1. SEO Agency Pricing Monthly Retainer

Almost every SEO agency works on this model to bill their clients. You will be paying on a monthly basis for SEO services. You will be expected to pay a fixed price for these services. The price goes up or down based on the services you need. Some common services include: 

  • Keyword research
  • Link building
  • Digital PR
  • Web optimization
  • Technical Audit

The average cost for monthly retainer SEO services in the USA is $2,500 – $5,000.

  1. SEO One-Off Cost

This is the least preferred pricing method by businesses. The way this works is, you reach out to an SEO service and they’ll ask for a one-off fee. Regardless of how much they do for you, you’ll just have to pay a single time. 

Hiring an In-House SEO Team vs SEO Agency

Most businesses consider hiring an in-house SEO team for their needs at least once. There’s no harm in hiring an in-house SEO team. But, you need to make sure there’s someone superior who can look over the team. 

It can be challenging for businesses to compare the pros and cons of in-house teams vs an SEO agency. Here’s how you can do the comparison:

  1. SEO Companies Offer Scalability

Every business owner who wants to grow their business knows that it is more expensive to hire an in-house team. 

Hiring an agency is cheaper, and hassle-proof and you get to work with experts. Another benefit of an SEO agency is that they focus all its attention on a particular goal. Growing your business is a primary concern for them. 

  1. SEO Firms Offer Creativity

An in-house team works with businesses over and over again and doing the same tasks every day leads to repetition. An SEO agency on the other hand has a team of experts with tons of skills under their belts. They can leverage these skills to help you grow your business. 

SEO agencies look like an outsider to your brand, so they know what your brand is missing. 

  1. Agencies Offer Increased Capabilities

SEO agencies come with a skill set that they’ve acquired working with hundreds of clients. No matter how hard you try, in-house teams can’t match that level of skill and sophistication. 

Things to Consider Regarding SEO Service Pricing

Choosing the right SEO agency requires you to do your own in-depth research. Make sure that you work with a service provider that can generate results for your brand. Here are some things to look out for while hiring an SEO agency:

  1. Impossible Guarantees

SEO agencies promise tons of results in a short time period that they can’t deliver. Regardless of the level of expertise, it’s not possible to generate overnight results with SEO services. Real, quality SEO can take a couple of months to generate any real results. 

When you choose a great SEO agency, they will explain the timeline carefully, and also all the steps involved. 

If their sales pitch includes cheap prices and impossible results, it’s probably a sham. 

  1. Spammy Link Building Strategy

Low-end SEO agencies often conduct poor link-building strategies that end up hurting your website’s reputation in the long run. 

When calculating SEO costs, any agency will allocate quality link building a major part of the budget. 

  1. Below Average Market Pricing

A low-cost SEO service solution suggests that a company doesn’t have enough experience. So, if you’re getting a provider that’s willing to work for next to nothing, then chances are they won’t often do anything of quality. 

Do keep in mind that this isn’t the case all the time. Sometimes, start-up SEO companies will offer quality services at low prices because they want to build their reputation in the market first. 

  1. Expensive Pricing with No Experience

Every SEO agency has its own set of prices, and what each one offers varies greatly. Regardless of the price an agency asks for, it should be reasonable and worth the services they offer. 

Whenever you come across an SEO service that costs more than the average, ask them what makes them so expensive. What do they bring to the table, what’s their unique value proposition? 

There are tons of areas in which an SEO agency excels, so you need to find out if that aligns with your needs before you sign up with an agency. There’s no point paying for their services when they don’t have the expertise you’re looking for. 

  1. Who Were the Previous Clients?

SEO companies tend to explain their pricing based on the results they’ve achieved for other clients. But, what may have worked for other businesses may not work for yours. 

This is why custom SEO solutions and pricing models are the best. Every business has different requirements, so one pricing can’t fit every business. 

If an SEO agency focused on social media marketing for a brand, there’s no saying the same will work for you. 

At MNS Digital Flip, we come up with custom pricing for all our clients based on their needs, and the work required to achieve their goals. Ensuring that both clients and we can work in perfect harmony. 


The cost barrier of SEO prevents most businesses from hiring an SEO agency altogether. But, for a business to flourish online, SEO is crucial. If you’re tired of talking with SEO agencies all over the globe, then we can help you out. Just reach out, and we can come up with a strategy and pricing that works in your favor. 

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