How to budget for SEO in 2018!

Want to know how to budget for SEO in 2018? If so, then we’ve got you covered with this definitive guide to SEO success in 2018.

There are two traps we have seen clients fall into when it comes to SEO. 1) They don’t have a clear strategy. 2) No budget is in place. Fall into these traps and prepare to waste time and money on a service that won’t deliver a positive return. For those searching for a clear strategy in 2018, then you’re in the right place.

Today we share five steps to help you budget for an SEO strategy that gets results. But, before any planning begins there are two fundamental facts you need to know about SEO:

SEO is a long term strategy. Don’t expect to see results overnight. We do not have control over Google. We can only look at the trends, evaluate and plan for the future based on our findings. While circumstances differ, a rule of thumb is 4-6 months for a shift in rankings, and 6-12 months for more complete results.

Run a mile from any business that promises “overnight first page rankings on Google.” This may appear to work at first, but your success will be short lived. Real results are earned through discovery, planning and auditing to ensure you don’t miss a trick. Want SEO that works? Play the long game and you won’t be disappointed.

SEO should be affordable. How much does SEO cost? If you’re hiring an SEO agency to manage your digital marketing, you’ll need a budget. There’s no fixed price point when it comes to SEO. You could pay £2,000 to £5,000 per month at one agency, however, a competitor may quote £100. How are you expected to negotiate that kind of price comparison when they both guarantee results. Tricky, but not impossible. Do your research. Take a look at their personal SEO efforts. Are they ranking on the second page of Google? If so, then you are best taking your business elsewhere.

Don’t accept second best. If they have got position one rankings for their business, there’s a good chance their clients are there too. We are currently the number one ranking SEO London agency – don’t believe us? Here’s a search (Incognito 😉) for ‘SEO London Services’:

SEO London Services in SERP's.

Once you understand these factors and are ready to start working with an SEO firm, you can
make a start on the five points below:

1) Choose SEO performance metrics

What are you going to focus on, and why? Don’t place all your efforts on “rankings.” They change all the time. You should monitor them on a monthly basis with a strong focus on headline terms. This way you can see trends in data and optimise your website content accordingly. Use Google Analytics to monitor traffic, leads, sales and any other type of conversion.

2) Set SEO goals for 2018

What kind of SEO activity is going to bring in the highest return? Set a goal for everything you do online. A 10% month on month increase in sales over the next 10 months? Perhaps a higher volume of website visitors? Identify what success looks like.

3) Put a value on achieving that goal

How much would hitting those targets be worth to you? Can you put a price tag on good SEO? How much would you be willing to pay if someone walked into your office and offered you a 50% increase in sales over the next year? It’s all about ROI. Don’t put in what you won’t get back.

4) Put a budget in place

You know what the value of your business is, you have an idea of what SEO services are needed, you just need to crunch the numbers. How much does SEO cost for a small business? (Or large!) Having an online presence is not cheap, but it is essential as Google processes over 40,000 search queries every second. That’s a lot of business coming your way, if you’re smart. Work out your SEO plans and pricing with a dedicated team of experts.

5) Hire a professional SEO agency

You hire an SEO agency the same way you hire a new member of staff – you find the one that presents the most convincing case of wanting to bring more business your way. Once you have hired that firm, here are a few tips on how to build a strong, long term relationship with them:

Make sure you communicate with your SEO firm. Are you prepared to hand over full access to your SEO firm? If not, then communication is key to success. You need to be open to regular meetings with your SEO Executive to discuss your campaign. Is there a particular change you want to implement? If you’re not on the ball, the results will be slower and less effective.

Let them do their work. Yes, they need you input about the business. You have valuable insights they can’t possibly know. But, resist the temptation to micro-manage your SEO firm. The more time you spend on the phone deliberating, the less time will be spent on your campaign.

Read your reports. The vast majority of clients don’t read our reports. This may be because they are busy (we do understand). Or, they may not understand the data presented to them – in which case, we provide a phone conversation to explain further. Without the report, you will have no proof of the results achieved.

SEO is a cost effective strategy with long-term success if you have the right foundations in place from the start, and then take the time to plan and budget. Your competitors will most probably be doing SEO, but they are by no means experts. Get ahead with your online marketing with help from an affordable agency that delivers real results. Get in touch with us and ask for our recent testimonials – we’d love to help your business. Call: 01226 720 755.