How Much Does SEO Cost? A Guide to SEO Pricing [2022]

Prices for digital marketing services can vary widely. Here’s how to know you’re working with the right agency for your needs and budget.

Updated: May 11, 2023
How Much Does SEO Cost? A Guide to SEO Pricing

Need content for your business? Find top writers on WriterAccess!

They say that you get what you pay for and that there’s no such thing as a free lunch. 

Both sayings are equally true when it comes to working with a professional digital marketing agency. 

After all, good SEO and digital marketing experts aren’t cheap and cheap ones aren’t always good. 

That’s why it is incredibly important to weigh the pros and cons of working with a particular agency or service before signing any contracts. 

Likewise, you should also have a good idea of the general market value for what they cost and why they add value to your overall strategy. 

This is definitely a post you’ll want to read through carefully before you even think about hiring someone to help with your next project. 

Here’s what you need to know about SEO pricing and how much you can expect to pay for services.

    What Kind of SEO Services Can Your Business Purchase?

    There are a ton of different SEO services you can outsource to an agency.

    In fact, there is a good chance you might not have even considered all of the different possibilities for improving your organic traffic

    Hiring an expert can save your business a considerable amount of time and money. 

    Plus, working with a professional ensures you’re getting the best services possible. 

    While this isn’t an exhaustive list, here are a few of the most common options for SEO services:

    Tracking and Analytics

    Keeping track of what’s happening with your SEO campaigns is a critical part of creating a strong strategy. 

    However, this requires using the right tools and knowing what data sets play a critical role in meeting your overall goals. 

    Hiring a professional to help with this process makes it easier to determine what information is crucial and how it relates to your campaigns. 

    SEO experts are also highly skilled at anticipating trends and understanding how Google algorithm changes affect your overall stream of traffic.


    Another area where you can hire an expert to help with your SEO is with content. 

    This can be something as full-service as creating all monthly written and interactive content. Or it can be just reworking or editing current content on your website. 

    Either way, having a team knowledgeable about search engine optimization on hand to assist with all facets of keyword research, content writing, video marketing, and more can be an excellent way to see an increase in your site’s position on the SERPs.


    Without a doubt, one of the more difficult aspects of off-page SEO is building backlinks

    Not only does it take an expert amount of knowledge to try to seek out the best ones for maximum effect on your ranking, but organizing those relationships with other websites takes time. 

    Instead, most SEO companies have certain protocols they use to secure the best backlinks possible for your website. 

    By purchasing this type of service, you can help improve your domain authority and increase the number of high-ranking pages on Google.

    Technical Optimization

    Another service you can buy for your business is technical optimization

    There are numerous aspects of SEO that revolve around more than just content and backlinks, such as page speed, robots.txt files, site structure, and many others. 

    For most companies, trying to handle this process in-house requires too much time and attention. 

    Instead, an outside agency that handles these processes on a regular basis can ensure there’s no detail missed and that the backend of your website is running as smoothly as possible.

    Local SEO

    If your business has multiple locations or a brick-and-mortar element, then you’ll want to invest in local SEO services. 

    What does this include? 

    Usually, it entails management of online reviews, Google My Business setup, and content creation around highly local keywords. 

    The cost of local SEO services can range from a few hundred dollars per month for basic services to several thousand for a full-service approach. 

    However, if your business depends on your website for local lead generation, then this is definitely an investment you’ll want to make.

    Individual Page Optimization

    Finally, there’s individual page optimization

    This is where your SEO service provider goes page by page through your website, looking for areas in which that section can be best optimized. 

    If you haven’t done a lot in terms of search strategy up to this point and you have a lot of different evergreen pages, then you’ll want to look into hiring someone for this type of service.

    Why Should Your Business Pay for SEO?

    When it comes to deciding how to use your marketing budget, you might wonder if paying for SEO services is actually worth it. 

    The truth? 

    Hiring an expert to handle search engine optimization for your website can save you both time and money in the long run. 

    Here are a few reasons to consider:

    SEO Takes a Lot of Time

    Search engine optimization isn’t something that you do once and then reap the benefits from forever. 

    Instead, it is a process that happens on a daily or weekly business, with requirements to add new content and make changes all the time.

    Employees Have Other Things to Do

    There are a lot of companies that opt to delegate SEO tasks to employees who have other duties. 

    The problem with this? There’s just too much to do to try to attempt both at the same time. 

    Instead, it is a much better idea to hire a professional to handle the process, leaving your staff free to focus on other important tasks.

    SEO Best Practices Change Frequently

    Another reason to hire a professional for SEO? 

    The best practices change frequently and Google almost always has an algorithm change right around the corner. 

    Trying to keep up with the latest and greatest tactics is sometimes difficult if it isn’t your primary industry.

    How Much Does an Average SEO Project Cost?

    SEO pricing can vary depending on the scope of the project and how big your website is. 

    However, a good guideline to consider for cost is small service packages with minimal services can start as low as $500 a month, while major enterprise pages with major needs can be as high as $30,000 per month

    If that sounds like a lot, don’t be alarmed. 

    The cost to hire an entire in-house team while paying for benefits, taxes, and other staffing needs is often considerably higher. 

    Plus, there’s the element of having to keep a building with lights, internet, and computers to consider. 

    When you break it down in that fashion, outsourcing your SEO is definitely the more cost-effective option.

    Plan your 2022 marketing budget

    How Much Should Your Business Pay for SEO Services?

    Ultimately, it depends on a lot of factors as to how much your business should pay for SEO services each month. 

    But a good rule is that you shouldn’t be utilizing more than about 30% of your monthly overall digital marketing budget

    But this number isn’t final. 

    In fact, you might opt to use SEO services before ramping up a pay-per-click campaign or for improving traffic a few months before a holiday sale. 

    Part of working with a professional SEO agency means breaking down how much you can actually afford, and any reputable company would be more than happy to assist you with this process.

    Wrap Up: SEO Pricing Depends on Your Context

    When most people think about fixed costs for their business, they don’t always think about digital marketing. 

    However, by working with an outside provider, you can get the best results while saving a ton of time and money in the long run. 

    After our blog post on SEO pricing, are you interested in seeing how well your current website stacks up for optimal SEO? 

    Our Rock Content SEO maturity assessment is an excellent place to start. 

    Not only will it help you narrow down the best services for your needs, but it will offer plenty of tips to help you get started on the path to better organic traffic.


    Human Crafted Content

    Find top content freelancers on WriterAccess.

    Human Crafted Content

    Find top content freelancers on WriterAccess.

    Subscribe to our blog

    Sign up to receive Rock Content blog posts

    Rock Content WriterAccess - Start a Free Trial

    Order badass content with WriterAccess. Just as we do.

    Find +15,000 skilled freelance writers, editors, content strategists, translators, designers and more for hire.

    Want to receive more brilliant content like this for free?

    Sign up to receive our content by email and be a member of the Rock Content Community!

    Talk to an expert and enhance your company’s marketing results.

    Rock Content offers solutions for producing high-quality content, increasing organic traffic, building interactive experiences, and improving conversions that will transform the outcomes of your company or agency. Let’s talk.