April 22, 2024

SEO Cost: How Much Should Businesses Spend on SEO in 2024?

If you’re here, you already know SEO is integral to any digital marketing strategy. You want to include it in your marketing mix, but you aren’t sure about SEO cost.

Depending on your needs, SEO can be managed in-house or by an SEO agency. Naturally, that means the cost can span a wide range, from a few hundred dollars to thousands per month. 

The good news is there’s a sweet spot in that range just for you once you’ve determined your business needs, goals, and timeline. 

Here’s a closer look at what should be included in your SEO campaign, what quality work looks like, how it can impact your ROI, and the costs you might reasonably expect.

Spending Wisely: Should You DIY SEO?

SEO is one of those endeavors that you might be tempted to pursue by building your own in-house team. There are certainly scenarios where this approach makes sense, depending on the size of your organization and how you intend to grow into the future. 

But quality SEO work will require a team of specialists. You’ll have to do the recruiting, build the infrastructure, and support them as they grow. Again, for some companies, this might be a beneficial addition, but in most cases it’s cost-prohibitive. 

Can you afford to hire, onboard, and offer benefits for an SEO Strategist, PPC Manager, Content Writer, and other positions? If not, you’re better off hiring a company to handle your SEO efforts. 

Unless you already have experts on your payroll, it’ll likely cost less in the long run to have an outside company do the work for you.

As mentioned previously, the cost of SEO that delivers meaningful results will vary based on industry, your goals, and how fast you want to reach them. 

If your business is entering a new market or part of a brand-new industry (think CBD a few years back), SEO has to work harder to meet your goals. Although you might hit your goals over time, it could require significant investment. 

On that note, there are a lot of factors that go into a comprehensive SEO plan. 

If you need the whole package—on-site optimization, search engine marketing, PPC, link building, etc.—then your spend will be higher. If you think just a couple of those services will suffice, your costs might be lower. 

But how do you know what’s worth a portion of your budget, what isn’t, and how to decide?

The Building Blocks of a Winning SEO Campaign

A triple venn diagram showing the different types of seo

Before you can appropriately allocate your marketing spend, it’s imperative that you have a basic understanding of the essential elements of SEO and see how each piece fits into the larger puzzle. 

Let’s look at a few SEO pillars and examine how they might drive growth for your brand. Then, we’ll continue to the ROI and cost of SEO. 

Off-Page SEO and Link Building Are Vital to Long-Term Results

Optimizing your brand’s online presence and performance requires a healthy and robust backlink profile. 

This is why off-page SEO and link building are fundamental parts of any solid SEO strategy and the most important thing you can do off-page to boost your site’s rankings. 

A qualified SEO agency like VELOX Media will pair the keywords you want to rank for with your most important landing pages, and then create high-quality content featuring those links. 

As the content is strategically syndicated across the web, it helps search engine crawlers and algorithms see the value in your landing pages and prioritize them accordingly on SERPs.

Use On-Page Best Practices to Enhance Your Site

On-page SEO encompasses all the steps you can take to improve your site for a better user experience. Done correctly, these optimizations essentially show search engines like Google that you have high-quality, user-friendly pages that should rank highly on SERPs. 

The most significant part of on-page SEO, especially after Google’s Helpful Content Update, is publishing world-class content designed to educate and inform the reader. This is the type of content Google wants to rank highly, so it’s the type of content you should prioritize.

Beyond quality content, on-page SEO includes smart keyword placement—and avoiding keyword stuffing—as well as optimizing title tags and crafting compelling meta descriptions. 


RELATED: Meta Description Checker


Get Technical to Boost SEO Performance

Technical SEO is exactly what it sounds like—the technical aspects of your site that impact its overall performance. This includes mobile-friendliness, page speed, and other ranking factors. 

In addition, these same technical elements often play a key role in creating an exceptional user experience, which can only help your rankings. 

Performing the technical work to ensure your pages load quickly can help reduce your bounce rate, which keeps your customers on each page longer and shows Google that it’s a page where searchers find value. 

Create Original, Helpful Content to Drive Growth

Google’s Helpful Content Update isn’t some minor algorithm tweak. On top of the immediate, tangible effects on rankings, the update provides a preview of how Google will change in the near future.

Google is reinventing itself as a discovery engine, and your content needs to be optimized for discovery and conversion. This work, also known as OC/DC, happens to be one of our specialties. 

A successful content strategy isn’t just about reach, but also results, which is why outcome-oriented content is essential to bringing more users into your acquisition funnels. 

These are the primary elements of a comprehensive SEO campaign. Some sites might need more work in one area over another. Still, every successful campaign should have at least some combination of link building, on-page optimization, technical SEO, and content marketing. 

However, as you compare different agencies and costs, you should know the intangible aspects that can greatly affect your campaign’s success. 

What Does Quality SEO Work Look Like? 

SEO work can be complex, but it’s important to know what to look for in a digital marketing agency before you choose a partner. 

After all, quality SEO work can make an incredible difference for your business, so you shouldn’t trust your SEO campaign to just anyone.

Quality SEO campaigns are about results, and leading digital marketing agencies will give you clear projections for the conversion rate, search volume, and revenue you should expect. 

That’s something we emphasize at VELOX. Using our cutting-edge business intelligence capabilities and New Revenue Projection Model, we can help you forecast growth, conservatively targeting 400-800% new monthly revenue capture. 

SEO solutions that drive genuine growth are never one-size-fits-all, and you need a campaign tailored to your business that can scale with you as you grow. 

You should expect a digital marketing agency to keep you apprised of your campaign’s performance, roll out new keyword sets, and optimize your campaign once it’s fully underway. 

In the meantime, your brand should reap the benefits of expert PPC work, which will help you get off the ground without delay as your SEO campaign ramps up. 

SEO can be complicated, but the results should be as clear as day. Expect a white-glove approach and clear reporting on ROI to understand the full impact of your SEO campaign. 

Any agency that hides behind jargon or isn’t upfront about your rankings month over month might not be the best fit for you. 

This leads to an important distinction when calculating SEO cost. Specifically, you should understand the ROI of SEO to gain a better perspective of the cost associated with any campaign. 

The results can be astonishing. 

The ROI of SEO Outweighs the Cost Of SEO

It’s not uncommon for marketing managers to settle for a top-10 ranking and forgo further SEO work. After all, improving by one position increases CTR by just 2.8%, on average. Why keep spending for negligible returns? 

Well, you should know that the top organic Google result averages a CTR of 27.6%. It’s also 10 times more likely to receive a click than a link ranked in position 10. 

SEO campaigns take anywhere from four to six months to gain traction and drive KPI improvements, so you shouldn’t expect to see immediate benefits. When you invest in sound SEO, you’re playing the long game, and you can expect to see exponential results in due time. 

By leveraging PPC in the short-term, your brand will enjoy a rapid increase in visibility and traffic while your SEO campaign ramps up. 

But what should you expect to see after all that time? 

Here’s an example: A women’s fashion brand partnered with VELOX and saw revenue increase by 400% with an average ROAS of 8.81 over the course of the campaign. They kept scaling their PPC and SEO efforts for a total revenue increase of 1,653%. 

Meanwhile, Magline, the world’s material handling equipment leader, grew their total revenue by 30% year-over-year through their partnership with VELOX. The SEO experts at VELOX drove 10 keywords to the first page of Google’s organic results, which translated into an average e-commerce conversion rate increase of 66%. All told, Magline realized—and surpassed—their campaign goal of $100,000 in new monthly revenue within only eight months. 

These are just two of many successful client case studies VELOX has seen over the years. It’s evident that no matter the upfront cost of SEO, a successful strategy can produce overwhelming ROI results. 

How Much Does SEO Cost? 

If you’re hoping for a solid dollar figure or set price for results like these two clients have seen, there isn’t one.

This is because the cost of SEO can vary widely based on industry, keyword difficulty, and your internal timelines. That’s why we work closely with every prospective client to understand their needs and estimate what it will take to reach their goals. 

Still, it helps to have an idea of what to expect and how much of your marketing budget you should allocate to SEO.

Based on recent survey results and marketing reports, companies tend to allocate at least 10% of their marketing budgets to SEO

Keep in mind smaller companies tend to spend more on marketing, and some industries are far more competitive than others, so it’s important that you spend enough for your campaign to gain meaningful traction. 

Small businesses should be prepared to invest $1,000 to $5,000 in SEO monthly, but expanding your budget beyond this range can unlock exponential growth that endures over the long term. 

Remember that while PPC campaigns stop paying dividends as soon as your budget dries up, SEO results outlive the campaigns that drive them—especially those oriented around high-quality content. 

Some companies can spend up to $100,000 monthly for full-service SEO campaigns in extremely competitive industries. But outstanding results are available for far less, often in the $10,000 per month range. 

Ultimately, what you spend will be determined by three factors: where you are, where you want to go, and how quickly you want to get there. 

See How a VELOX SEO Campaign Can Boost Your ROI

At VELOX, we use the latest research and expert strategy to design custom campaigns for our clients. As a Google Premier Partner, we consistently deliver results that exceed client expectations, typically doubling a client’s customer base in 6 to 12 months. Plus, with crystalline business insights, we’ll always keep you apprised of your ROI. 

A full-service engagement with VELOX means you’ll get the power of our advanced analytics, on-site technical optimization, and world-class content creation in a made-to-order SEO campaign, driving organic search dominance for your brand. The coveted top SERP positions are more valuable than ever, and VELOX can take you there.

Contact VELOX today for a campaign strategy centered on your brand and experience exponential growth for yourself.

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