Have you looked at the prices that SEO firms are charging these days? Some SEO companies are charging as much as $5,000 a month, and for what they offer it’s hard to justify paying that kind of money.
But have you thought about the fact that Google wants SEO to be expensive.
Think about it. Why do most people try to drive traffic to their sites using SEO rather than paid search or Pay Per Click? After all, you can guarantee a top ranking with PPC and you can get a flood of traffic right away rather than waiting the 1-8 months it might take to climb to the top of the organic listings.
But people go after SEO because it is free traffic once you are ranking. Of course, you also have better click-throughs with organic traffic because people are getting more savvy to Google ads.
So what if these SEO firms only charged $50 a month and you could see great results in a few weeks and be at the top of the search engines. This would absolutely kill Google’s paid search platform. If I can get my website to a top spot in the organic search results and get all of those clicks for free, why would I pay through the nose for every click that landed another visitor on my site? I wouldn’t. And Google knows this too.
They want SEO firms to charge a lot of money because that will keep people using Adwords when they see the ridiculous prices that these firms charge.
Of course there are some offshore SEO companies that charge very low rates, but most of these also offer very low quality service and have a better chance of getting your website sandboxed or penalized than ranking higher in the SERPs.
SEO firms are supposed to offer white hat SEO methods that help your website longterm. Perhaps JC Penney failed to see this part of the equation when they hired their SEO firm. They were looking at the short term boost rather than the long term effects of their profits.
But don’t be fooled. You can do everything that an SEO company does yourself. Only one problem. It’s going to take some work. Sure, you can outsource all the little tasks like writing great content to use as guest posts on other blogs, contacting other websites to ask for a link or doing some quality blog comments, but you can’t always make sure of the quality of this work unless you do it yourself. And if the goal is to save money, you might have to do it yourself.
I am a huge fan of outsourcing and do it on a daily basis. But I don’t think you should ever outsource something that you haven’t done yourself at least a few times. This way you know what to look for when hiring someone and you know what goes into that work.
It might be tempting to just hire an SEO firm to get all those precious backlinks for you and to do some social media work for you too, but you can just pay yourself that $5,000 a month and do it yourself and learn a lot along the way as well. When you hire someone to do your dirty work for you, you don’t tend to learn as much.
Any thought on using an SEO firm? I’d love to hear from you in the comment section below.