Local SEO Pricing: 11 Factors that Affect the Cost

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A well planned local search engine optimization (SEO) is one of the absolute best ways to enhance the visibility of your business and gain more traffic to your website that in turn drives sales.

While looking for local SEO services it must have crossed your mind that what amount of your hard earned money shall be worth in exchange for an ideal local SEO for you.

There is this one question that we hear the most regarding local SEO; What are the local SEO pricing plans?

Let’s be honest, nobody wants to throw away their hard earned money at something that doesn’t provide value for money. Therefore, below we take a look at how much of your valuable money is worth it for local SEO services.

For local SEO pricing, first and foremost, you need to understand the main ingredients that constitute an SEO quote.

How Much Does Local SEO Cost?

Local SEO can cost from $100 per month to $2,000 per month. There are many factors that influence the price. This post will go over 11 most common factors that affect the price of Local SEO.

Factors That Affect the Cost of Local SEO

Website size

A large website with hundred pages will definitely produce more work than let’s just say a 20-page website. Also, a well built website with sitemap would require less resources. Hence, the size and build of a website is a main factor in determining local SEO pricing.

Your goals

A few basic structural tasks are needed for some websites while others may have more complex result driven goals like number of conversions, thereby requiring to pour more SEO resources into them.

The industry do you operate in

Some industries are more competitive than others thereby requiring more competitive keywords as well. An unusual niche industry would require relatively less effort and resources, as compared to a highly competitive industry.

What type of SEO service do you need?

Some SEO services are designed once and then they just need to be managed end-to-end for optimal results, while others are part of a larger marketing campaign that need to be designed to fit into that marketing campaign.

All these above mentioned ingredients constitute the basics of SEO, however local SEO includes some added factors that influence the pricing.

Other Factors that Affect Local SEO Pricing Include

  • Citations
  • Your competitors
  • Locations
  • Local links
  • Products/Services you offer
  • Current situation of your local SEO

We will take a look at these one by one in detail and based on these we shall provide the general idea for pricing that a local SEO commands.

Citations

Citations are basically references to your business/company that include the name of your business, the address, phone number, and email address. One of the very basic local SEO strategies is to list your business as well as its corresponding locations in the top 50 directories available online. You might need up to a hundred citations depending upon the industry that you operate in. If, however, you are operating in an unusual niche industry these citations may use up fewer resources thereby costing you a lot less than you had initially anticipated.

Whenever Google comes across a place that cites your website or has a link back to your business, it assesses the connection to your business. Therefore, the citations shall be consistent all across the web as Google looks at the whole web to create rankings, not only your website alone. Cost of managing citations may be around $50 to $200 per month depending upon the number of citations required for optimal results.

Your Competitors:

If you are in any unusual business that is considered a niche, you are in luck as far as local SEO pricing is concerned. The reason is simple and very straightforward; being in an unusual business will have less competition for optimizing your search results. That means citations, links, locations etc. for local SEO would be relatively easier to deploy and maintain.

On the flipside, if you have a handful of competitors in your business domain, you would need to out them by increasing your local SEO budget. You will need more of the links, citations, locations etc. for SEO on on-going basis and maintaining them would be very crucial as well. This would lead to an increased local SEO budget. However, this may lead to an even higher budget than expected when you come across a competitor that generally does invest a lot in local SEO. You would  need to out your main competitor by outbidding them and deploying more local SEO strategies than what your competitor is doing. Therefore, thoroughly study your competition before you embark on the journey of local SEO.

Number of Locations

Your business may have multiple locations where they operate. Think of each location for your business as a separate entity with regards to local SEO pricing. This means that each location would require to be treated as a unique case as far as their respective local SEO is concerned.

Each location would have its own citations, website pages, and their own distinctive content. Therefore, the more locations you would have, the more budget would be required to offset SEO rankings for those locations. Number of business locations is directly proportional to the SEO budget, given that you are not in any unusual niche business as mentioned in the point above. Therefore, you may budget your local SEO for the number of your locations you want to include.

Local Links

There is a term that Google loves for SEO enthusiasts known as ‘backlinks’; which in simple words means those links from a page on one website that link to a page on another website. Google basically considers them as votes of good standing for a particular website.

In simple words, while determining the rankings of your website, Google evaluates the links back to your business (website) that appear on other websites. If those websites where your link appears are trustworthy, authentic, and popular (apart from these many other factors play an important role too), the vote that the link to your site gets is probably on the higher side. As a result, your website starts to gain higher ranking based on those links.

Therefore, the value associated with a good link is high and the local SEO pricing is high as well. Moreover, obtaining very high quality links from the local websites is very difficult and therefore the search for them never stops.

Do You Have an Established Online Reputation?

If you have a solid link profile that has come by from other marketing efforts in the past that may lower the cost of Local SEO since you already have an established online presence.

Product/Services you offer:

The keywords that potential customers may use to find your product or services are of the utmost importance for local SEO pricing. Clearly define your products/services and what they offer i.e. what properties do they have; tangible as well as intangible. This would be helpful in assigning them keywords for a robust local SEO campaign. Now, there are two angles of this particular point;

  1. The number of products you offer shall be directly proportional to your local SEO budget. In other words, the more keywords you want to add the more budget you should keep in mind.
  2. However, not always should more products translate to an increased budget. The reason being the extension of point number 2 (Your competition) listed above. If you operate in an unusual niche market, the products and their respective keywords would be easier to deploy for local SEO.

The best strategy would be to make a list of all products and their corresponding keywords and then work towards local SEO. Remember, the products or services that you offer are at the heart of your business, therefore you should not compromise on the budget particularly in this domain.

Current Situation of Your Local SEO:

It may be possible that your website is already a part of local SEO or back when you started, you did pay a little amount for local SEO to test the waters but dropped the idea after a few months into the business. Different factors come into play when the current state of your local SEO is assessed and these may include but not limited to:

  1. You may have an already established business but the website has used very low quality local SEO solutions in the past, therefore a lot of time may be needed to resolve all the existing hindrances and get your rankings back on track.
  2. If your business is established but no SEO was deployed, the outlook may be a bit better relatively but still a lot has to be done from scratch.
  3. However, if you are starting a new business, building a good local presence won’t happen overnight but one can be optimistic given that an ample budget is set for local SEO needs.

In summary, the current situation of your local SEO would play a major role in determining the SEO strategy to deploy techniques and methods for improving your online footprint.

What should be local SEO Pricing?

The answer to this question is mostly dependent on the factors listed above. There is a saying; “You get what you pay for”, and this holds true for local SEO as well. The more customized package you pay for based on your needs, the more vigorous results you shall expect to see.

However, based on certain indicators that we deduced from the market, we can categorize costs analogous with local SEO into three main categories as:

  1. Automated
  2. Small-scale
  3. Comprehensive

Let’s discuss these categories of local SEO one by one with their expected pricing packages:

Automated

Automated local SEO is basically a paid service that automatically ranks your data once submitted to the online directory of information providers. It makes sure your business name, address, and phone number remains consistently in the directory and ranks automatically.

However, once you stop renewing the SEO package, this no longer works. All previous ‘effort’ and money is gone. This is also one of the drawbacks of automated systems. Since they are automated they don’t follow the pure organic growth pathway for a local SEO. Once it stops the automation, everything related to the SEO ceases to exist.

Typically an automated system would cost around $100-$200 per month per location, depending upon your locations and the package you choose. 

Small-scale:

The small-scale local SEO option is best for you if you are starting a new business or are in an already established business with no local SEO history. This is ideal because you get to pay relatively less for an all out small-scale organic SEO growth pattern whilst seeing good results in due time. You can build your future marketing campaigns from data and insights you gather from a small-scale local SEO. Hence, it is one of the best places to start for your brand. One point to remember is that data and insights into the performance of local small-scale SEO is limited i.e. not as comprehensive as you would like it to be.

Typically, such local SEO ranges from $350 to $900 per month depending upon your locations and the package you choose.

Comprehensive

These constitute a wider spectrum of SEO campaigns that include mobile Search Engine Optimization, backlinks optimization, citations, etc. They also look after the maintenance of local SEO services within their package.

The most robust outcome of such comprehensive local SEO lies not only in the SEO services that it provides but the custom reporting feature that shows when and where your hard earned money is being utilized. You can have a detailed report of the breakdown of your expenses in lieu of local SEO and track your Return on Investment respectively.

Typically, comprehensive packages may vary from approximately $900 to $2000 per month.  

Key Takeaways

In summary, local SEO pricings are subject to a variety of factors. These factors alone cannot be attributed to local SEO pricing because Google’s search for perfection sometimes alters the way one might go about deploying the perfect SEO. However, the basics remain the same.

Your size of website, your goals w.r.t SEO, the industry you operate in, the type of SEO service you require, complexity of citations, number of business locations, your competitors, number of backlinks, number of products/services you offer, and the current state of your local SEO – all contribute towards the pricing of local SEO. You may take these points into consideration before setting out your budget as per your appetite.

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Roger Avila
Roger Avila

Roger is an SEO manager at JetRank

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