Why is SEO so Expensive?
As an experienced SEO company, we at Webluno often get asked – why is SEO so expensive?
It’s a fair question. After all, at first glance, SEO essentially involves optimizing websites so they rank better in search engines. That doesn’t sound too complex or resource-intensive. But there are good reasons professional SEO services come at a premium price.
In this article, we’ll break down the major factors that contribute to the high costs of doing SEO properly and effectively, so you can better understand where your investment is going when you hire an SEO company like ours.
Labor-Intensive Strategizing & Optimization
At its core, SEO is a highly strategic endeavour that requires skilled human input. The internet and algorithms that power search engine results are always evolving. Google makes over 3,500 changes to its algorithm every single year.
An effective SEO campaign needs to adapt to these constant changes. Our SEO specialists spend hours every week learning about the latest updates and finetuning campaigns accordingly.
On top of this, optimizing a website for SEO success involves assessing and improving many variable elements including:
- Keyword research & targeting
- Optimizing page content for chosen keywords
- Enhancing website speed and performance
- Structuring URLs, metadata, etc for search visibility
- Building high-quality backlinks from other sites
- Producing engaging content that earns traffic
- Ongoing performance tracking and refinement
Our SEO team dedicates vast amounts of time to analyzing websites, strategizing optimizations, producing content, reaching out to websites for backlinking opportunities, and monitoring how sites rank and the traffic they receive.
This requires creative human input and strategic thinking vs repetitive production work. The time and skill that goes into doing this effectively and at scale across client sites is a huge drain on human resources, making expert labour one of the biggest costs.
Specialized Tools & Software
In addition to the expertise of our SEO team, we utilize the best tools and software available to enhance our efficiency and results. We have invested substantially in technical SEO tools such as:
- Backlink analysis software
- Rank tracking and site crawl tools
- Competitor research tools
- Content planning and production platforms
- Automated link-building & outreach tools
The licensing fees for enterprise SEO software runs into thousands of rands annually at minimum. While this provides an edge over DIY optimizers relying solely on free tools, it adds significantly to our operating expenses.
We also use powerful content creation and monitoring platforms such as Buzzsumo, SEMrush, Ahrefs, Majestic and Cognitive SEO. Most of these tools cost upwards of $99/month for a single user license but being able to analyze competitors, find link-building opportunities and generate video and written content ideas is crucial for achieving SEO success.
While free SEO tools do exist, they simply cannot match the depth of data and insights provided by paid enterprise systems – which we pass onto clients by being able to optimize more efficiently. But it comes at a significant SaaS cost.
Dedicated Account Management
Another sizable component of what makes professional SEO expensive is the account management involved.
At Webluno, your website benefits from being assigned a dedicated SEO account manager along with the support of our wider SEO team. Your account manager acts as the main point of contact for discussing strategy, addressing concerns, providing quarterly presentations etc.
Behind the scenes, an SEO analyst will be tracking and optimizing your site’s rankings on a weekly basis while the content team regularly produces custom-written blogs/articles to boost your organic traffic and leads.
Having multiple staff members continually working on your SEO campaign in a structured team setup offers huge advantages but certainly contributes to the high fees, considering their salaries and overheads.
Reporting & Tracking Expenses
As part of our enterprise SEO packages, you get access to detailed analytics dashboards that allow tracking your website’s search engine positions, organic traffic, leads generated, conversions and ROI from the SEO investment.
We utilize online analytic services to continually monitor rankings across major search engines and ensure technical elements like site speed remain optimal. Generating ranking reports also involves extensive use of paid SEO tools mentioned earlier.
On top of this, your successes are tracked within our own CMS system and our account managers need to collate analytics from different sources to provide quarterly presentations on meaningful metrics like lead growth and sales attributed to SEO.
Maintaining robust reporting and tracking capabilities requires both software costs and plenty of staff hours, which inevitably get factored into what clients pay for our services, therefore contributing to why SEO is so expensive.
Unlike paid advertising, SEO success involves earning high rankings on merit rather than paying for visibility. This organic approach makes cost efficiencies from scale far more difficult to achieve.
With paid ads, additional spend brings predictable returns in proportionate visibility. But rankings are relative and zero-sum – improving your own rankings inevitably leads to the displacement of competitors. Optimization best practices also differ significantly based on niches and keywords targeted.
What it takes to rank #1 for an informational keyword like “best martial arts for mma” differs vastly from ranking for a commercial term like “car insurance quotes”. The diversity of sites and keywords we handle makes it harder to streamline efforts.
The organic SEO process involves creativity and strategy tailored to individual websites rather than brute-force budget increases. There’s no shortcut for skill and effort required. These inherent scaling challenges in SEO mean our costs for optimizing additional sites remain high.
Why SEO Delivers An Exceptional ROI Despite The Costs
As explained above, reputable SEO companies incur major expenses across software, tools, talent and management overhead to deliver success. This leads to the high price tags you typically see on SEO services.
However, it’s important to note that when done effectively, the ROI from SEO is exceptional and it kicks in fairly quickly. Unlike intermittent advertising bursts, SEO leads and sales keep growing over months and years.
Strong rankings earned through expert SEOs like us compound over time – giving your business a critical edge against competitors still reliant on paid ads with little organic presence.
While the high monthly costs can be daunting initially, SEO success unlocks revenue growth potential that quickly outweighs the investment. As Google drives over 63% of website traffic worldwide, higher visibility in search results translates directly into exponential gains for savvy businesses.
The choice of an established SEO company that gets you measurable returns is well worth the price demanded – consider the costs as laying the foundations for sustaining long-term growth!
Hopefully, this gives you better clarity on why professional SEO requires considerable investment and the reason behind why SEO is so Expensive. If you have any other questions, feel free to get in touch with our team!