Sometimes you don’t have the resources to tackle digital marketing for your business by yourself. More and more businesses these days are looking for assistance in this area by professionals. One of the biggest issues faced when hiring an digital marketing agency and marketing professional is the cost involved.
This leaves many people asking the question “how much does digital marketing cost?”. That in itself is an impossible question, but there are ways you can go about managing and putting together a budget. But it is important, to do your research first, you cannot just pull a number out of thin air.
There needs to be justification as to why you are looking to spend the budgeted amount. If you can justify the cost well, then your team is more likely to be supportive of spending money. As well as this, you need to remember that every business is different and so will their SEO, and therefore costs aren’t the same.
Take a look below at some of the best ways to create and manage a digital marketing budget:
1. Expectation vs. Reality
A survey conducted by Higher Visibility in 2017 found that over 70% of small businesses budget less that $100 a month for digital marketing. Now this comes back to doing your research. Just a quick search online will show that quality SEO doesn’t come cheap.
Yes, there are places out there offering cheap SEO, but you need to be wary of those places, as further discussed in the next point. The promise of getting to the first page of Google for cheap prices can be tempting, but in the long run these results aren’t usually sustainable and can do more harm than good.
It also helps if you have some basic knowledge of SEO. That way when you ask a potential agency about the way they do SEO for their clients you will have a better idea of if that is something which aligns with your business.
Also remember that SEO results don’t present themselves in a nice straight line. It can get messy and it does take a long time to see results, especially if you are a new business/ website. SEO is a long term strategy and your efforts need to reflect that.
2. Wary of Cheap Digital Marketing
As touched on above, SEO isn’t cheap and those claiming to offer cheap quality SEO should be approached with caution (if at all). Remember, this is your business and you are the one who will take the blame if something goes wrong because you hired an digital marketing agency that didn’t have your interests at heart.
The issue with cheap SEO and quick results are that the tactics used to achieve this aren’t exactly on Google’s good list. This can result in your website receiving a penalty, and some penalties can be a serious as your website being banned from Google search engine results.
So think about the question, is this something you really want in the hands of an incompetent agency? Probably not! Yes, SEO does cost a bit of money, but the return on investment is quite high considering other forms of marketing, like print or television advertisements.
3. Manage Resources Properly and Set Goals
Have an idea of what you want SEO to achieve and what actions need to be taken to achieve this. Then you need to set measurable goals to understand whether the agency has been successful enough.
There are a few things you should look at as a priority. Firstly, your website needs to be accessible by Google, they need to be able to properly crawl your website. The website speed needs to be fast as well as ensuring your site is compatible on all devices.
Secondly, the content on your website needs to be unique (compared to both other websites and other pages on your own website). Your content needs to be of a high quality and something that users are looking for. As well as this, you should also be looking to update your content regularly, 2-3 times a week.
Lastly, you need to think about how you are going to get backlinks. Backlinks form a major component of SEO and the more high quality and relevant backlinks you have, the better message it sends to Google. When it comes to backlinks you should think about having quality over quantity!
With all these ideas in mind, you need to attach goals to them. In the past, businesses measured success solely on keyword rankings. While this is still an important component, it shouldn’t be the only component.
You should also look at:
- Improving your organic sessions by a certain amount each month.
- Increasing your conversion rate by a certain amount each month.
- Growing your revenue by a certain amount each month.