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Cheap SEO vs Expensive SEO – Which One to Choose?

Iskra Evtimova

I know how hard it is to choose the right SEO service. Your email is flooded with different messages from strange people that are promising you the world and you do some research on Google. Now you find yourself frustrated and not knowing what to do because of the endless options. Some companies or freelancers offer a monthly SEO service for $2000-$4000, and others offer you a monthly SEO service for $300.

What is the difference and what monthly fee should you pay for the SEO services?

A lot of people are interested in the cheap SEO options so, let’s start with them, shall we?

It is in human nature to prefer to receive than to give. But sometimes when you don’t give enough, you receive even less. Allow me to explain. Let’s say the company X offers you a monthly fee of $300 to optimize your website. You are happy and think you have made a hell of a deal. Depending on the results you want, this may be true for some cases. Now, the average monthly salary in the US is $ 3428. This is without the expenses for the employee’s office space, computer, utilities, etc. So let’s make it $4000. The expenses the company pays for the employee are around $4000. Let’s find out then how many clients one employee should work on. (And please notice, this is the average and there isn’t any SEO company or freelancer who works for the average salary.) Here is the formula:

Salary / fee per customer = number of customers per employee

In our example, $4000 / $300 = 13.33 customers. One employee should work on 14 customers on a monthly basis. And this is without any benefit for the company.

You would agree that everyone works for profit after all, wouldn’t you?

So, the employer is going to give even more customers to every SEO employee. Let’s make them 16, even though this is still not enough profit from 1 employee.

In average there are 150 working hours in a month. So if we have 150 hours divided by 16 customers this equals 9 hours work per customer per month.

How much SEO work can be done for 9 hours you may ask?

Here are some stats again:

  • To write an article in the field you need to research the topic and find a suitable place to post it – 3 hours (min) – if you have a blog on your website with articles posted every week – 4 articles x 3 hours = 12 hours
  • To create an infographic – 5 hours (min). Sometimes it takes more than 12 hours.
  • Business directory – 20-30 minutes
  • Create a video – 2 hours (min)

You can do the math how much work is going to be done in 9 hours per month. This type of SEO is okay for small locations and businesses that don’t have a lot of competitors.

Now, let’s analyze the expensive SEO.

The following examples are from my point of view. I give 3 customers per each employee. Each employee needs time to familiarise themselves with the particular business. Afterwards, they monitor the sites and work to improve the clients’ web presence on a monthly basis. As mentioned above, there are 150 working hours in a month. So, 150 working hours divided by 3 customers is 50 hours of work for each client. And it has it all – optimization, monitoring, marketing advice, research and monitoring of the active competition of the given business sector. Just imagine how many things can be done in 50 hours, considering the time estimates I gave you above.

We start to be a part of your company and we know that for us to succeed, you should succeed first. We build a relationship with each of our clients.

I don’t say you should always go for the expensive one. As I mentioned above, if you own a small business in a small town, you can go with the cheap option. But if your goal is to rank on Google’s first page in a competitive niche, then don’t waste your money on cheap SEO. It is not going to pay off.

I hope I have helped you to gather a little bit of understanding about the monthly SEO fees. My goal with this article is to properly assist you in the finding of the right SEO company/freelancer for your business to succeed. If you have any question, feel free to contact me.


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