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​How Much You Should Spend on SEO Depends on Your Target Market

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The Internet is undoubtedly one of the greatest inventions of the 20th century. Because of it, many 21st century citizens spend a great deal of their time online. This is because they can now stream movies and television programs, listen to music, get updated on the news, and make various purchases without leaving the comfort of their homes.

With many people looking to the Internet for anything from diagnosing diseases to shopping around for a good lawyer or doctor, it’s hardly surprising that leading search engines are having a field day. And for companies who want to establish a strong leading presence online, being featured on the initial results listing of a prominent search engine is the main goal.

Thus, the field of search engine optimization or SEO was born. In a nutshell, SEO is all about positioning a website strategically so that it can easily be accessed and recognized by a typical search engine, and so that the same search engine will drive it up near the top of the results page.

And since almost every company today needs to incorporate an aggressive online marketing campaign into their business processes, a going concern for many upcoming Australian companies is how much they should spend on SEO services.

Evidently, a company’s target market should always be considered in the process of coming up with an SEO budget. Fortunately, most SEO agencies adhere to a handful of standard payment models that cater to a variety of markets. These include the following:

1.)Hourly consultancy fees – These are perhaps the most basic payment methods for SEO services. Consultancy fees are generally incurred when a company would seek out an SEO agency’s services or professional counsel for a limited amount of time (e.g., an hour or two). Compared to most payment methods, these fees aren’t quite as substantial, especially since they’re incurred infrequently. Thus, Australian companies with target markets who are usually aged 60 and above (or generally, those companies that cater to a majority of clients who don’t transact with them online) would usually opt for this payment method and its corresponding budget. By only consulting or contracting SEO services when a great need for such arises, Australian companies who opt for hourly consultations with SEO agencies can keep costs at a minimum and still maintain a

visible (though not particularly noticeable) online presence.

2.)Contract services – These types of services offered by SEO agencies often come prepackaged and at fixed prices. Though it’s certainly more intensive than the hourly consultancy sessions mentioned above, Australian companies that opt for contract services would still be taking baby steps towards a full-fledged SEO scheme.

One of the most common contract services offered by SEO agencies is a website audit. This involves an SEO company analyzing a company’s existing website to determine its strengths and weaknesses as well as how it measures up to other websites in the same field. A typical SEO website audit can also reveal the appropriate keywords for a client to use on their website to achieve the optimum number of search hits.

Australian companies with target niche markets that have an active online presence can opt to draw up their SEO budget depending on the costs of the contract services that they would deem necessary. Since niche markets are a very specialized and rather limited group, Australian businesses that cater to them need only to determine their target market’s core needs and wants and have an SEO agency factor that in to their website whenever there is a change in such.

3.)Monthly retainer fees – These are for Australian companies who target a substantial chunk of both local and international Internet users. Since these sorts of companies generally derive a great deal of their revenue stream from online sales, it’s only natural that they should be prepared to spend a bit more in order to maintain a strong online presence and thus keep the sales coming.

Australian companies who opt for this option should prepare a monthly budget for a fixed fee (which is determined by both the client company and the SEO agency it contracts) in exchange for an agreed-upon array of services. In exchange, the client company can avail of regular analytics reports from the SEO agency monitoring their website. In addition to this, the SEO agency will also constantly optimize the website content and its keywords, build helpful links to the website, and make regular on-site improvements as needed.

4.)Project-based costing – The sort of budget that this costing requires is like the kind required for contract services, but on a more upscale level. The main difference between contract services and projects is that the latter is usually more targeted. A client who would want to avail of project-based costing, for instance, would have a concrete and specific goal (e.g., to widen their client base in the local market) that they would commission an SEO company to carry it out in exchange for a fixed price.

Thus, project-based costing is advisable for Australian businesses that have a wider but nonetheless localized target market than the companies who cater to a specific nice market. This is because commissioned SEO projects are more targeted and thorough than basic contract services, but still would not require a business to regularly set aside a substantial budget for such. Hence, companies who generate their income mostly from local online clients can opt to direct the remaining funds towards bettering their business processes.

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