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Business & Finances

The Marketing Manager’s Guide to Budgeting for an SEO Plan

A recent survey revealed that only 49% of businesses invest in SEO. SEO is one of the best methods to attract high-quality traffic to your website.

It’s also one of the most challenging marketing tactics to master. Many businesses are drawn to SEO because they think that it means free traffic.

SEO is anything but free. It takes a significant number of resources to execute an SEO plan. Those businesses that budget accordingly are the most successful.

You don’t have to get left in the dark. Just read on to learn how to master SEO pricing for your SEO plans.

Examine Your Entire Marketing Budget

Do you know how much you spend on marketing? Do you know which marketing tactic generates the best results?

If not, you’ll need to do a little historical research into your marketing spend. Look at the last 12 months and calculate the total amount spent on marketing.

Dig a little deeper to learn how much you spent on each marketing tactic. Assign each tactic a percentage of the total amount spent.

What is a new customer worth to your business? Calculate the lifetime value of a customer. This is the basis of your return on investment.

You’ll need to assume how many new customers you’ll get from the SEO plan. This is based on keyword traffic and conversions.

Allocate a percentage of your marketing budget to SEO. Be sure that it doesn’t exceed the amount of money you’ll make from SEO.

In-House vs. Outsource

Should you keep your SEO plan in-house or outsource it. Outsourcing to a company with cheap SEO plans could backfire because you get what you pay for.

On the other hand, there are SEO packages that make your costs predictable and you can focus on your business.

Keeping SEO in-house gives you total control, but you assume the cost of everything.

SEO Tools

SEO requires keyword research, competitive research, and constant monitoring. There are SEO tools that help you do that.

It makes sense to try free tools at first, such as this page that has a backlink checker. There are free keyword research tools to get you started.

As you get results from your SEO plan, you can increase your budget to include paid tools.

Content Production

The majority of your SEO budget gets spent on producing quality content. You’ll need to spend time and resources on producing blog content.

You can just outsource blog writing if you don’t want to invest the time but can’t quite afford SEO packages yet.

If you want to supercharge your SEO plan, you’ll add video content to the mix. This is more expensive to produce.

You can make do with using a mobile phone as a video camera. You’ll need to get good lighting and audio equipment.

Plan on producing content at least once a week. Consistency helps deliver results over time.

SEO Expertise

If you’re keeping your SEO plan in-house, you have to invest in education. SEO changes constantly and you need to keep up with those changes.

Google rolls out algorithm changes at least a couple of times a year. Each change can impact your search results.

Businesses that don’t keep up will get left behind. You don’t want to be one of those businesses, so make SEO education part of your budget.

Your SEO Plan Is a Long-Term Campaign

At this point, you have a general idea as to what your SEO plan will cost, you have to multiply that by 12. SEO isn’t a short campaign that you turn on and off like PPC ads.

SEO requires consistent commitment. The results of SEO compound over time. As you produce quality content on a regular basis, you’ll earn the trust of search engines and the audience.

That puts your content ahead of the competition in search results. Users will recognize your name over time and click on your content.

The click through rate is a ranking factor, so your content appears higher in search results.

The SEO budget and plan should be a permanent part of your marketing budget. You’ll get great results for years to come.

Measure ROI

How do you know if your SEO plan works or not? You have to measure results.

Your site should be connected with Google Analytics and Google Search Console. These free tools give you plenty of insights about your website traffic and SEO.

Use Search Console to find out what keywords your site currently ranks for. You should see the number of keywords increase as you put out more content.

You’ll be able to learn the average search position for those keywords and the number of clicks for keywords. Use this information to home in on specific types of content that get the best results.

Google Analytics tells you what people do once they click on a search result. You’ll find out how much time they spend on your site and the number of pages they visit.

You should set up goals on your site to track the number of conversions from search traffic. You can then quantify the return on investment from SEO.

Make Your SEO Plan Work

Contrary to popular belief, SEO isn’t free. It costs time and money to produce content, research keywords, and perform outreach to influencers and bloggers.

If you outsource your SEO plans, you can find affordable SEO packages with quality providers.

No matter what path you choose for your SEO plan, you’ll need to come up with a budget to cover everything. This guide showed you the basics of SEO pricing so you have a budget that meets the needs of your business.

Now that you know how to create an SEO budget, head over to the Business and Finance section of the blog for more tips to improve the finances of your business.

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