If you’ve got a limited budget and think that engaging an SEO service is the only way you’ll get more clients, you may want to consider all the options before signing with an agency.
Coming from an SEO company: if you aren’t able to invest at least $1,000/month on SEO (link-building, content, keyword research, and more), you might want to focus on other marketing options.
Want a video of this instead? Here you go!
1. Why you shouldn’t pay someone to do SEO for $500/month*
Time = money. SEO takes time, from the content to outreach. It is hard to do quality work on a limited budget so, with little money, SEO’s will cut corners because they simply can’t invest the time in creating good/accurate content or on outreach to build good links.
Black Hats. Using SEO bank agencies (typically overseas warehouses with people churning out bad links and using black hat SEO techniques) is a bad idea. You know the Facebook issue where Russian companies were spending millions buying ads and creating false content? Well, this is the kind of thing they do. Is that who you want working on your law firm’s marketing? If so, you can stop reading here– I’ll never convince you that’s not a good idea.
Cookie cutter services. A package deal sounds really great, but SEO is not a one-size-fits-all option. You don’t want someone to use canned content for your blog that they’ve used for every other legal client in their roster. There are smaller, legitimate SEO’s that offer packages just go into those aware that you may not get the results with strict limits for account time.
This is why you don’t want an inexperienced SEO. This client’s previous SEO moved their website and forgot to migrate the site’s content. That’s where the drop-off in site traffic happened… oops!
2. What to do with a limited marketing budget:
Networking: Go to lunches, find a networking group, meet other lawyers that you can partner with or get referrals from. This may be a better use of money when your business bank account is less than robust.
Social Media Ads: Social ad spend can vary greatly with practice area but spending $20 to boost a great video or image can get you in front of thousands of potential clients. Spend time curating your list and target audience based on geographical area, interests, and any other information you can gather about your ideal clients so you aren’t wasting clicks.
Create stuff: Write blog posts, record short videos, or insert your preferred other content here. If your problem is money and not time- do this: spend 1-2 hours each day creating SOMETHING that you post on your website, GMB profile, and/or social media accounts.
Use Paid Tools to Help Yourself: Moz, SEMRush, or other keyword tools that can help you craft better content or marketing strategies.
3. Are you sure you can’t afford marketing?
Figure out how much your leads cost and how much you spend on creating content, managing your website, reaching out to colleagues, and other marketing-related things.
Limited service SEO can be an option but be aware of what you’re getting.
Check out this oldie, but a goodie post from Moz on SEO cost from around the world.
No matter what, be an informed consumer.
If you’re in the market for SEO services and know your budget is on the smaller side, use due diligence and spend some time vetting the agencies or contractors you are working with. Ask for work samples. Do they make guarantees? If so, hang up the phone and delete their emails. Unless the SEO is Google, they can’t guarantee anything.
*or similar amount of money