Low Budget SEO Services are appealing. I get that. You shell out $350.00 and hope for extraordinary results. It’s temping to offer them and even more tempting to take up the offer of a cheap SEO Service.
But the service fails. Not only is it a failure from the outset, it continues to fail the more you invest in it and can even hurt your small business and shut you down.
Think about your brand for a minute. What kind of brand do you want? What kind of reputation do you want to have online for your small business? If you are only looking at hanging around for a year. Go for it. Cheap SEO all the way! But…
Cheap SEO cannot afford to get you high quality backlinks. It cannot afford to write content that generates traffic or social engagement. And it cannot provide the expertise and marketing you need to actually do well in your industry niche.
It’s generic: Here today, gone tomorrow. And it has ruined many an otherwise decent website.
But if you want your business to be around for the long haul and you want a brand you can be proud of, then Cheap SEO ain’t the way to go, and here’s why.
1. A Top SEO Service Requires Research
A cheap seo service can’t afford research. Which means that you probably aren’t getting any web market research done.
Shelling out $199.00 per month buys you some hours from an SEO Service. That’s all. But a quality SEO Service is not there just to engage in a few hours of pointless busy work.
There are a host of web marketing strategies that need to be implemented for an effective long term SEO Campaign and anything under $300.00 a month will get you little more than a pretty report and a graph.
- Keyword and Competitor Analysis
- Industry Trends
- Detailed Site Audit
- Audit of your Current Position and reputation in the online Market Place
Without an acceptable investment in SEO, your SEO Agency is not going to know any of these things because a cheap SEO budget rules out the time and expertise needed to find out.
And if you don’t invest in knowing where you are, how on earth are you ever going to land where you need to be – or even know when you are there?
2. Good Content Marketing Takes Time
$200.00 a month is going to buy you a few unoriginal sentences for a Facebook Page, half a dozen pointless pins, a comment on a blog post written in 1907 and that’s it.
Content that draws more website traffic, that converts, and that boosts your position in search engines has to be high quality. Nobody is going to write high quality ‘anything’ for $20.00. You get what you pay for.
Content, Blog Posts, Guest Posts and articles that get results are those that are:
- Well written
- compelling to your audience
- Amplified in the Direction of your Target Market
Winning Content requires everything listed above in the SEO Agencys’ research along with an actual talent for copyrighting.
Expect to pay no less that $500.00 per month for a decent content writer to publish three or four articles a month. Such articles are going to be permanent sources of high quality converting traffic.
They are going to be evergreen, or else viral and they are going to be the kind of content that incrementally builds the brand reputation that you (hopefully) want for your small business.
3. First Page In Google Demands High Quality Backlinks
High quality backlinks that actually get you rank are hard to get.
Your SEO Agency knows, and will tell you, that this is often the hardest part of the work. They have done the research, they know how to create and amplify high quality content to your target audience.
Now, how do they get that content on to other quality sites? You could fork out a few hundred dollars and get a thousand backlinks from some blog network buried deep in the internet.
Do this and you might even get a short sharp boost in rankings.
But, links age, and the poorer the quality of the links to begin with, the quicker they will age and become worthless. Three months from now you will be back to where you started.
- Maintain their value because they continue to send traffic
- Are on relevant industry sites
- Are on high quality sites.
And getting a decent answer costs money and hard work from your SEO Service or Agency. If there is no decent money spent on backlinks, you should not expect decent backlinks.
4. Cheap SEO Exposes you to Penalties
Again, I get it. I really do understand the temptation behind hiring a cheap SEO Agency. But what will it cost your business a year from now when you have a Google imposed Penalty because you paid dollars to a shady SEO Service?
How much do you think it is going to cost you to remove the penalty. Don’t under estimate this. Business is shutting down all over the web. Having been bombed from the Panda on high, the cost of recovery made business untenable. They are no more.
Your brand should mean more to you than that, or else you probably should not be in Business.
5. Generic SEO Services Rule out Expert Partnerships
And this is where a good SEO Agency is worth it’s weight in all the Gold you can throw at it.
A Decent SEO Agency is able to provide you with an ongoing SEO and Web Marketing partnership that grows in its value over time. These partnerships will enable consultation and mentoring that will help you to perform many of the long term SEO tasks yourself.
If you allow a decent SEO budget, your SEO Consultant or Agency now has time to give you one on one expert advice and marketing. They can now give you some real clues and insights in to how you can continue to grow your brand in your specific niche or industry.
They will have the time to do more than just email you a pretty report. You will have an expert in your corner. Someone who will keep an eye on the trends, the competition and the opportunities for greater success.
Good SEO is Not as Expensive as Bad SEO.
OK, so we are back to where we started. Good SEO costs money. But not as much as bad SEO.
Good SEO continues to build brand, value and reputation to your business well in to the future. But with every cheap SEO Agency you hire, you are usually heading further down the dunny until you hear the inevitable, and often terminal and Titanic, “Splash!”
The same can equally apply to another quick fix I know. Google Adwords.
Google Adwords costs money too. But a good quality SEO Service has the distinct advantage of paying dividends in to the future where Adwords can’t.
The minute you stop Adwords, the sales dry up. SEO on the other hand can continue to pay dividends well in to the future.
In A Nutshell
Good SEO Agencies Cost Good Money because they Provide:
- High Quality Content
- Backlinks that increase in Quality over time
- Consultation and expertise specific to your Website
Cheap SEO Services, on the other hand:
- Have no budget for decent content
- Settle for poor, even hurtful link building
- Have no time to mentor you in marketing your own business
What You Can do on a Tight Budget
If your funds are limited, then limit the work the SEO Agency can do for you. But don’t limit the quality.
In other words, better $800.00 spent on a single backlink or content campaign tackling one competitive keyword that pays dividends for the next 12 months, than $800.00 spent on a full suite of SEO services that are half baked and poorly done.
Choose one area that needs improvement. It might be:
- Website traffic
- Ranking in Google’s search engine or,
- Social Media engagement
Set measurable targets with your SEO Agency and,
- Be prepared to pay good money.
- Be patient
With this strategy, you should expect results that are far superior to those you would have gotten by spending the same amount of money on twenty SEO services of very average value.
A properly funded commitment to SEO means quality results. Not quick results. Quality results.
SEO and Web Marketing are long term investments. You should not see it as a cost but as infrastructure that is going to make your online brand and small business far more valuable.
Gail Gardner says
I totally agree. I have seen way too many business owners paying for horrid SEO services. I delete scores of spammy comments left by “SEO agencies” (using that VERY loosely) and my anti-spambot plugin blocks 10x more than I see. Small businesses have no idea how dangerous bad SEO is.
Even expensive SEO can get you penalized if they don’t know what they’re doing. Be sure to ask if they monitor all incoming links and whether they have target percentages for each type of SEO. A lot of agencies only place content on sites that have influence that they can get onto so their link building is very unnatural. Finding a qualified SEO is essential and not that easy to do.
David Trounce says
Thanks Gail for the input. Many of us have wasted both time and money trying to dig up the gems in the online marketing industry. You live and hopefully, you learn.
Hi David. Great article.
I love coming across other similar minded SEOs like yourself.
I’m on the east coast of Australia too. Do you attend any meetup groups or SEO events on this side?
David Trounce says
Thanks for the feedback. No, I don’t get out much. I leave that networking to my staff – they do a better job at it. Most of my networking is done online. However, I think the networking they do face to face is hugely helpful, especially to them.
Cheers for letting me know Dave.
Where would be the best place to catch yourself online?
I was running an SEO agency in London last year and I often had to inform prospective clients about them going for cheap quick fix SEO vs building a long time SEO strategy, which would be more expensive upfront, but generate them much more income and referrals over the long term.
It was amazing to see how people just wanted quick results, but they were prepared to put their entire business in trouble by paying for spammy SEO (1000 social bookmarks, 1000 directories, article marketing syndication software, Xrumer, etc) for $250 per month when they are running a $50k per month business. (SEOs would often SMH).
Like I said, I love seeing other like minded people and would love to follow you online. I’ll try to find you on Google + 🙂
David Trounce says
Dave, Click on any of the social media icons and you are sure to find me. Yep, it is good to find others working side by side in the same industry. If there is ever a need to collaborate, feel free to give me a shout.
Hello David! It’s really useful. It’s always good to learn new things and these kinds of blogs help us to increase our knowledge. Thanks David for the useful blog.