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    SEO Agency Pricing Philosophy: Keywords or Location or Other?


    I've been doing SEO for quite a few years and I generally price my services based on the number of keywords involved in the campaign. I do mostly local seo for small businesses and healthcare websites, where much of the work is long-tail.

    I was wondering what other SEO Agencies out there do for their pricing (I'm not asking to hear your fees -- I'm trying to figure out the how and why of your pricing).

    For me I:
    1) Pick an hourly $ I want to produce
    2) Set my pricing accordingly
    3) I have 3 plans, which all include the same features except that the higher the plan, the more keywords I will initially research and the more keywords I will track per month.

    This model works for me, but I've come across some other sites where they price based on the population (remember, this is for healthcare websites -- doctors, etc.)

    So if you are trying to optimize in an area with 1,000,000 people, it's going to be more expensive than an area with only 100,000 people. What I don't get is what's the difference in terms of services to offer - other than keywords?

    And if it's keywords, I go back to the 3-5 per page "rule". Even if you have a 50 page site (essentially a page for each service) -- you'd max out at 250 keywords...???...

    So even if you went for the 50 pages/250 keywords, how could you top that in a 1,000,000+ population area? By going with a 75 page site? I mean some doctors don't even remotely have enough content for 75 pages.

    So I ask , what justifies the higher fee charged for SEO for a physician's website in an area with 1,000,000+ people vs one with 100,000 people? And what "increases" in your workload would an SEO Agency need to work on to account for this population difference?

    I'd say link building, but in the medical market, other than local newspapers, local business groups, and national/local organizations, doctors aren't exactly lining up to link exchange with competitors?

    Thanks in advance for any insight!
    W
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    Your first mistake. Plans.

    Each website is different. Has different needs and different competitions and customer reach.

    There's no default rate, (besides hourly consulting) IMHO. Each project is priced (for me) custom and based on the: keywords, competitions, site history, any previous SEO doing harm or good and the actual needs of the clients. Traffic vs conversion. SEO vs marketing. Marketing vs. Brand Awareness.

    What's the clients real world expectation? To rank page 1? To see improvements? What are you promising the client?

    Comments on this post

    • KernelPanic agrees
    • fathom agrees
    • PhilipSEO agrees
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  5. rod@missionop.com
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    Originally Posted by DavidAW
    I've been doing SEO for quite a few years
    Dishonesty is easy to figure out using your posting history and searching Google for your personal nuances.

    You have not been doing SEO for a few years or rather your dumbass newbie questions in the past few days suggests you are incompetent - a Snake Oil SEO using your March 2012 Post as a reference.

    David I do not fault anyone for trying to make a go at SEO Practitioning but you are being dishonest with your customer(s) implying you already know what you are doing while at the same pretending to us you are a peer but asking day one newbie questions.

    The difference... we know what you do not and your customer(s) is not being told the facts.

    STOP LYING!

    ...to everyone.

    Comments on this post

    • DarrenHaye agrees
    Last edited by fathom; Nov 27th, 2012 at 12:56 PM.
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    Originally Posted by fathom
    Dishonesty is easy to figure out using your posting history and searching Google for your personal nuances.

    You have not been doing SEO for a few years or rather your dumbass newbie questions in the past few days suggests you are incompetent - a Snake Oil SEO using your March 2012 Post as a reference.

    David I do not fault anyone for trying to make a go at SEO Practitioning but you are being dishonest with your customer(s) implying you already know what you are doing while at the same pretending to us you are a peer but asking day one newbie questions.


    The difference... we know what you do not and your customer(s) is not being told the facts.

    STOP LYING!

    ...to everyone.

    I have been doing SEO for a while, and while it may not be as "great" as YOUR SEO, or match up exactly what you think encompasses YOUR ideal SEO campaign and techniques, making baseless accusations and calling me names is really unproductive -- especially since I'm trying to learn more.

    And as for the March post, don't flatter yourself. You mistakenly assume that since I asked about pricing in March 2012, that means that I started in March 2012.....and you accuse me of making assumptions!!!

    So putting this all together, I figured it out:

    I asked some questions about long tail keywords and SEO pricing. YOU didn't like it when I said I've been doing it for years, because of a post I wrote in March 2012 asking about pricing. So somehow by me asking about pricing in March 2012, that means I couldn't have been doing SEO before that and therefore I am somehow a liar.

    Brilliant!

    Truth be told I asked so many follow-up questions because I found your answers to be cryptic (though I did appreciate you taking the time to try to help me). It was like trying to understand Yoda. And then instead of trying to help me, your cohorts on the board decided to jump-in and kick dirt in my face, too.

    Your big bold letters and colors are also quite impressive and I will not ask you any more questions -- so don't worry.

    I hope you don't rush to judgement and treat your clients like this.

    Take care, sir and enjoy your pedestal.
    Last edited by DavidAW; Nov 27th, 2012 at 07:44 PM.
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    It was like trying to understand Yoda
    Don't take this the wrong way fathom but...If you don't find that funny, you need to purchase a sense of humor.
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    I have to comment here, fathom - give the guy a break. He is asking a valid question regardless of experience or ability. Put the brakes on man! Wr don't need to personally attack people on this forum. This should be a friendly place for people of all levels and backgrounds.
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    I agree with Fathom.

    The guy is asking questions about SEO that he 100% should know since he is apparently selling the service.

    If you want to learn SEO basics David great, but no way should you be taking peoples money while you're doing it.
    I am always ready to learn although I do not always like being taught. ~Winston Churchill
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  15. SEO Since 97
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    I agree with fathom too, but I don't agree with calling someone a dumbass. And it's the moderators job to keep that in check.
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    Originally Posted by Test-ok
    I agree with fathom too, but I don't agree with calling someone a dumbass. And it's the moderators job to keep that in check.
    He called his questions that, not him, all though the colourful language is not really warranted granted.
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    Originally Posted by DarrenHaye
    I agree with Fathom.

    The guy is asking questions about SEO that he 100% should know since he is apparently selling the service.

    If you want to learn SEO basics David great, but no way should you be taking peoples money while you're doing it.
    Personally I don't think that trying to improve and grow techniques for geotargeting in niche markets is a concept for a novice. Maybe you do, and I respect your right to disagree.

    Further, I think that inquiring about how others price their services is also a reasonable question. You may not like "plans" but some people do.


    And while we are on the subject would you like to tell us all here about your first few SEO jobs? Or were you born an expert with no need for any learning curve.

    And I also guess that you perfectly priced out your first few jobs and you never had to make any adjustments moving forward. I guess you are lucky.

    Besides, now that we are done here, maybe there are some other relatively new users on the forum you two can go around and "apparently" pass judgement, berate and try to humiliate as well.
    Last edited by DavidAW; Nov 27th, 2012 at 10:53 PM.
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    Originally Posted by DavidAW
    And while we are on the subject would you like to tell us all here about your first few SEO jobs? Or were you born an expert with no need for any learning curve.

    And I also guess that you perfectly priced out your first few jobs and you never had to make any adjustments moving forward. I guess you are lucky.

    Besides, now that we are done here, maybe there are some other relatively new users on the forum you two can go around and "apparently" pass judgement, berate and try to humiliate as well.
    I don't know enough or have what I believe I would need to offer a professional SEO service currently.

    I can't say I have plans to offer an SEO service in the future though.

    I enjoy working on my own main business site and some other little projects
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  23. rod@missionop.com
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    Originally Posted by DavidAW
    I hope you don't rush to judgement and treat your clients like this.
    Telling truth to power is what SEO is all about.

    Your intent is to make an income... I get that but you have no serious ability to provide results we all know that as it doesn't take much to review your history (if someone is serious about gathering insight on you as a member).

    Also if my posts are too cryptic for you to gather any measure of understanding then you need to dig deeper into the SEO philosophy before you start testing your amatuerism ways on paying customers.

    My point - learn MORE before you destroy your reputation.

    Clearly none of the senior members (tstolber as an example) will ever use your services so I guess that means it's, no harm, no foul so long as everyone is nice about your inability to do the same to those that believe you are worthy of their financial risk.

    There isn't any issue... get paid an hourly wage or a flat rate to do link exchanges and use automated SEO tools to bolster your value... of exactly $0.00

    Your customers' intent is to use a professional service provider that already provides professional services not a wantabe experimenting on them without their knowledge.

    @ tstolber... YES this is a learning environment. It's better that the incompetent get brow beaten by me than a customer (doctor) in a court of law because the guy misrepresented themselves. Sure... when you're in the US and the customer is in the UK you feel real safe in screwing someone over... or rather... "it does not matter if I can provide results - I tried so I get paid regardless,"

    But anyone that spends a couple hundred thousands on a medical degree will have no problem hiring an attorney in another country just to prove a point.

    @ Test-ok... shame on you! I find nothing funny in a con job! Just because someone can use moniker anonymity to bolster their position does not mean that is the right thing to do.

    Want to become a fair SEO... experiment on yourself first or at least advise the customer you are not a professional.

    Telling truth to power is the best value of a public forum, course when the customer comes here crying foul... I also hammer them for being a moron because they couldn't be bothered to do any due diligence.

    Comments on this post

    • Test-ok agrees : 100 percent. :)
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  25. rod@missionop.com
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    Originally Posted by DavidAW
    And I also guess that you perfectly priced out your first few jobs and you never had to make any adjustments moving forward. I guess you are lucky.
    Your success rate defines your pricepoint.
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    I find nothing funny in a con job
    I don't either, but the Yoda comment made my day, spit all over my monitor...guess you had to be there.

    seriously though I'd much rather see you beat him up here rather than the alternative. Some of the words were a bit over the edge. No?
    And I understand, it's the passion you posses.
    It's all good.
    nomesayin
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  29. SEO Consultant
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    Do you know how many times I've been called out on this forum?

    Stop being sensitive. Either defend your answers/reasons and explain or say thank you for everybody's help and move on.

    You have a couple great SEO's in this thread telling you what to do. I would follow the advice.

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