Pay For SEO Or Do It Yourself?

Can you write?

Can you take setbacks?

Or would you rather pay someone and see what happens?

If you want to DIY your website’s SEO, then you will need to consider the advantages and drawbacks. But if you said yes to the first two, you’re already ahead.

However, you’ll need to buckle up. It will be a long road to DIY the SEO.

Pros of DIY SEO

I think there are several benefits to doing SEO on your own.

Firstly, it can be a cost-saving measure, as it eliminates the need to hire a professional, which is particularly beneficial for small businesses or startups with limited budgets.

By the way, as the person who started the business, you are in a unique position where you know a lot about the subject. You just need to get those down onto a blog.

SEO tools are pretty expensive, though, but there are some free ways you can do research beforehand.

Secondly, handling SEO tasks yourself gives you complete control over both the strategy and its implementation, putting you firmly in the driver’s seat.

Lastly, the process of DIY SEO offers a valuable learning experience, allowing you to gain a deep understanding of SEO from the ground up, which can be immensely beneficial for the future growth of your business.

Skills Required for Effective SEO Implementation

Let’s dive into the pool of competencies needed to rock your SEO game! SEO is not just about stuffing keywords — that might have worked in 2008, but no longer.

Google really cares about how people respond to the content you put out and other factors that make up your Domain Authority. It requires a concoction of skills to deliver a potent impact on your website’s visibility.

Here’s the interesting part: you don’t need to be a tech wizard to acquire these skills.

  • Keyword research: The essence of SEO lies in understanding what your target audience is searching for. Hence, mastering the art of keyword research is crucial. Tools like Google Keyword Planner can be your best ally.
  • Content creation: Creating engaging, high-quality content that seamlessly integrates your targeted keywords is a must-have skill. The good thing is that, as business owner, you are likely to be the subject matter expert who can give unique insight into the business.
  • Link Building: This is about getting other websites to link back to your website. It’s part knowledge, part relationship building, and part good PR.
  • Technical SEO: This includes site speed optimization, mobile-friendliness, indexing, etc. A basic understanding of web tech is important here.

Don’t worry if you’re not an expert at all these yet. As with any skill, practice makes perfect. Start with what you’re comfortable with and gradually broaden your SEO skillset.

Cons of DIY SEO

On the other hand, I think there are several challenges to consider when doing SEO on your own.

Firstly, it is a time-consuming task, demanding continuous effort, analysis, and adjustments, often taking up more time than initially anticipated.

If you are starting from nothing, you’re going to wonder if all the time you’ve put in makes any difference. It will, but you might want quicker results. Then, you might be better off thinking about some other method.

Take a look at these screenshots. The red line shows when these blogs posted their first blog post. The graph shows the number of top 10 rankings these blogs had, and the amount of time they needed to see big results.

These graphs were taken from an SEO audit I did for a client to prove that their competitors managed to grow their traffic by producing up to four articles per month.

Secondly, SEO is complex and not a one-size-fits-all task. There are two main aspects to it: backlinking and organic ranking. Backlinks are links from other websites that lead to your site. They act like votes of confidence, signaling to search engines that others find your content valuable, which can boost your site’s credibility and authority.

Organic rankings refer to the position of your website on search engine results pages for specific keywords, without paying for placement. These rankings are influenced by various factors, including the quality of your content, site speed, and yes, backlinks.

Both help you build what’s called Domain Authority.

Lastly, there’s a risk of making mistakes without professional expertise, which could negatively impact your website’s ranking.

The Cost Implications of Hiring a Professional SEO Expert

Let’s talk about money. Ah, yes, that pretty important factor that often determines whether we go the DIY route or hire professionals.

Cost of Hiring A Pro

Well, the cost of hiring professional SEO services can vary greatly. Monthly retainer fees can range from $1,000 to $3,000. One-time project fees can start from $5,000 and go all the way up to $30,000. Let’s not forget hourly rates which can run anywhere between $100 and $300 per hour.

I generally prefer to quote a flat fee, and rarely do SEO projects go by the hour because there are fixed deliverables. Get a free consultation and see if SEO is right for you.

  • Retainer fees are great for long-term projects that require ongoing work. Like all marketing, you will need to continuously do it. If you stop doing SEO, you’ll notice that your rankings will start dropping. Take a look at this graph below, this shows a website whose ranking dropped over time because their content wasn’t updated and nothing new was created. In the end, your competitors will eat up your lunch as time goes on.
  • Project fees are often for specific, one-off initiatives like SEO audits, or website builds, revamp or optimizations.
  • Hourly rates are perfect if you just need a few hours of an expert’s time.

Remember, the quoted fees include a plethora of activities like keyword research, competitors’ analysis, and performance monitoring. They’re not just pulling numbers out of thin air!

So, while the costs may seem hefty, it’s important to consider the value you’re getting for your buck. Is it worth saving the money and going DIY, or will the professional touch generate the kind of results that justify the expense? It’s a tough call, isn’t it?

I’m always happy to help. Get a free consultation and see if SEO is right for you.

Time Investment: DIY SEO vs. Professional SEO

When it comes to SEO, one crucial factor to consider is time. Whether you’re opting for DIY SEO or hiring a professional, it’s essential to understand the time commitment involved.


If you’re doing SEO yourself, be prepared to invest a significant amount of time.

Learning SEO basics, implementing strategies, tracking and analyzing results can be time consuming.

The SEO landscape also continually evolves, requiring regular research and adaptation to keep up. It’s not just a one-off task, but an ongoing commitment.

Professional SEO

On the other hand, when you hire a professional, they bring in expertise and tools to get the job done efficiently. They can handle the complexity of SEO, freeing up your time to focus on core business activities.

But remember, it’s not hands-off. You’ll still need to be involved in strategy discussions and review progress regularly. For example, I work with my clients every month to find out what their business goals are, and what keywords they want to target. You’ll need to relay these business goals to your SEO expert.

If you are hiring a professional, you will need to know how many months and how much money you’re going to put in.

You can’t put in too little or give it too little time. Google takes its own time for newcomers. For results to appear, you will need at least six months to a year and that is with consistent content.

So, budget around $1,000 per month at least for keyword research and content creation. Do this for at least six months. Then you will see where things are going. The bigger the budget, the longer the timeline, the more your results can be conclusive.

Making The Decision: Evaluating Your SEO Needs and Capabilities

Ask yourself some crucial questions. How much is your budget? Can you afford the time and effort for DIY SEO? Do you have the necessary skills and knowledge? These questions will guide you to the right choice.

For businesses with limited resources, DIY SEO can be a cost-effective solution. But remember, it’s not just about saving money. You should also consider the potential return on investment.

  • If you have some basic knowledge about SEO and are ready to learn more, DIY might work.
  • On the other hand, if you’re starting from scratch and need immediate results, hiring an expert might be a better option.

Remember, SEO is a continuous process, not a one-time task. It requires consistent effort and monitoring. So, be clear about your long-term SEO strategy before making a decision.

Regardless of the path you choose, always keep learning about SEO. It’s an ever-evolving field which means there’s always something new to learn and implement for your business success.

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