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Starting a Seo Agency- Need help deciding the fees.

Discussion in 'White Hat SEO' started by Xlr8, Jun 28, 2016.

  1. Xlr8

    Xlr8 BANNED BANNED Jr. VIP

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    I'm just getting started with local SEO and will be pitching a few business owners this week.Focusing on doctors and medical practitioners for now.

    I just did some costing and the cost will be ~$1k minimum which includes content,citations,PBNs,Press releases,IFTTT network. This does not include my fee.

    I am from India.

    I was just doing some salary/earning research of the wages of doctors and medical professionals on Payscale.com

    I was shocked to see the difference between the average salaries of doctors in India and the ones in US.

    You can see the data below according to Payscale.com

    Doctor(General Practice)

    US - $140571
    IND - $7907

    Family Doctor

    US - $159809
    IND - $6965

    Neurologist

    US - $197431
    IND- $17879

    Oncologist

    US-$243317
    IND-$16882

    Plastic Surgeon

    US-$260232
    IND-$17890

    Other professions/businesses are pretty much the same.

    I am planning to get them on board on a 6-month contract.I talked to a couple of people who do local SEO. They usually don't take on clients who have an average customer value of less than $1k. This is to ensure that the clients get a good ROI.

    The targets are usually doctors,lawyers etc. But the scenario is different here in India.

    The costs I'm going to incur while doing SEO will be according to the global market. But the local business owners here operate according to the Indian prices/market(which is far less/cheap compared to the US/UK market)

    How do I justify a $1k~ fee for SEO to these businesses?

    Is there a way to cut down on the costs without compromising on the quality?

    If this is actually the scenario then should I drop the plan of targeting local businesses and target countries like US,UK,CA instead?

    Thanks in advance
     
  2. validseo

    validseo Jr. VIP Jr. VIP Premium Member

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    Don't charge US prices in India... you'll lose the customers. One thing almost all businesses do is compare prices and unless these businesses have been living under a rock they have had 10-20 SEOs contacting them every year for the past 5 years. If you want those customers then give them a price that is on the high end of fair and tell them the real value is in the relationship and understanding of their business and you are here to meet with them in person or by phone and you intend to learn about what makes their business special and customize the SEO specifically for the needs of their business. This is something that the white label cookie cutter SEO services can't do because they are only in the game to collect retainers and provide the same scripted treatment to everyone. You're in this to make a lifelong engagement that grows with the business. Let's do that instead.

    That's what I would do. :)

    PS... never turn down clients you can deliver on unless you have better clients to replace them with. Which means if you have no customers then maybe start with the customers you can get.
     
    Last edited: Jun 28, 2016
  3. Xlr8

    Xlr8 BANNED BANNED Jr. VIP

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    Makes sense. But when it comes to doing SEO(buying PBN's,content etc) there is no US price or India price. It is the same irrespective of where you are from.

    If I charge them Indian prices it will be a bit difficult for me to get them leads.Or I will require more time. A lot of these business owners are impatient. 6 months is already a long time frame for them.

    Plus, charging them Indian price while Im incurring the costs online which are US/UK prices mostly means me operating at a loss and making far less than what I would if I were doing SEO for my affiliate website.
     
  4. mariademitrova

    mariademitrova Junior Member

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    on top of your stuff add a bunch of bonuses from fiverr to make your service look like a few hundred dollars more expensive
     
  5. Xlr8

    Xlr8 BANNED BANNED Jr. VIP

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    lol. im in for the long run. I don't want to do shady SEO from Fiverr.
     
  6. Sombrero

    Sombrero Senior Member

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    You are gonna have a hard time. I worked on SEO for a local client in the USA and he was getting 4-6 calls every week about SEO. He was asking me if it was worth it to invest $300 month in SEO of course I rejected all offers.
     
  7. imscseo

    imscseo Newbie

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    Very good advice from validseo.

    Treat your customer's sites and biz as your own and you will know what to do.

    Frankly speaking, US has a high tax rate and this guys give back almost half of what they earn. There is a reason for their premium price.

    A $1000 price tag in local SEO is a price which we pay for branding, results, support and assurance.

    I am in local SEO too and those biz guys are always saying "OH SEO is so easy and cheap and can be outsource to Indians for less than a hundred bucks". Lol .What an irony..
     
  8. Phenomix

    Phenomix Regular Member

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    Your shocked that a first-world Western country has significantly higher pay than India for its medical professionals?
     
    • Thanks Thanks x 1
  9. MartysW0RLD

    MartysW0RLD Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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    If you're in India can't you just hire employees and do the SEO at a lower rate?
     
  10. kittykut

    kittykut Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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    well you have two options

    1. target different countries

    2. lower quality and price of service
     
  11. qazer101

    qazer101 Registered Member

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    Unless you're already a big name and have clients coming to you, you're really going to have a hard time starting up your own SEO company these days. I know many people with small businesses getting almost a call every single day offering SEO packages, which of course are all rejected.

    If you want to get clients, you must stand out. Work on your social image, go buy some nice cologne, a nice suit, a nice watch and spend a lot of time grooming yourself. The more professional you look, the more preeminence you convey. Meet prospects in person, and make sure you've polished up your social skills. To justify the high price tag, you must place a huge emphasis on ROI. If you can, give them some past clients' success stories. Come in with strong hard numbers that you can back up.

    I'm not familiar with India and their IM scene at all, but I imagine it would be a lot more packed than it is in other countries like the US, with such cheap labour.

    Good luck with your venture.
     
  12. Xlr8

    Xlr8 BANNED BANNED Jr. VIP

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    Haha. Ikr. They either think SEO is cheap or SEO is a scam. They don't realize that the cheap SEO that they hire are always snake-oil sales guys who cannot provide results.

    When did I say that? lol. Carefully read what I wrote in the OP

    I wish it was that simple. Hiring employes means hiring a space on rent. I cannot deal with Work from Home type work environment as I wount be able to keep a track of how many hours they are putting in.

    Plus, Im not really good at hiring and managing people and their pay in a way that I'd still profit.

    Speaking of which I realised that I need to work on this skill of mine.

    Thanks mate.

    I don't think its really that hard if you can actually provide results.(which I can).

    I agree that getting the 1st customer may be a bit more difficult. However, once you have a few its gonna snowball into a big lead system. Majority will be referrals coming from your previous clients. I know guys who close leads for $5k 6 month contracts without even meeting them. That's UK though.

    I maybe able to justify my fees in the US,UK. I just don't know how to do it in India. Reducing the price means compromising on the quality which I don't want to
     
  13. Phenomix

    Phenomix Regular Member

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    OK, since you asked.

    The US is a first-world western country. India is not. I also never said that you said that, although, it is exactly what you said without saying actually saying it ;)
     
  14. ben223

    ben223 Newbie

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    You have given yourself the answer you were looking for already. IF you're not able to operate at a better price for whatever reasons you simply don't. (opportunity cost gets you here)

    In addition, if you're not able to figure out a way to cut your costs by yourself don't even think about starting a small local company as there will be soooo many more questions you will have to find an answer for.

    Don't get me wrong, I am all for that "do your own stuff"-thing, but please get some education/knowledge on economics first. Comparing the salary of a first world country with an emerging market just shows that you have zero knowledge about that kind of stuff.

    Let's compare the PPP of India and the US: For 2010-2014 the PPP has always been around 0.3, even going down to 0.275 in 2013 with a slight increase in 2014. This means for every 1000$ you have to spend in the US for product X you only have to spend 300$ in India, therefore your prices have to adjust.
    Your problem is that you are probably buying resources with the PPP of the US in mind and not India. This means you either have to adjust your targeted customer group or find a way to get your resources with the PPP of India if you want to target local businesses.

    Btw, your:
    Neurologist

    US - $197431
    IND- $17879

    becomes:
    Neurologist

    US - $59229
    IND- $17879

    if you compare them with the PPP in mind. This is just basics, there is much more to comparing pricing between two different countries - even when comparing two first world countries. Another problem is that you're thinking in global terms (as the internet seems to have no borders) on the one hand but locally on the other. That's something you just cannot do when you want to start a local business.
     
  15. Xlr8

    Xlr8 BANNED BANNED Jr. VIP

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    You're right. I'm bad with economics and Finance. Just a random guy on the internet who loves doing SEO and would like to use my skills to help local businesses here.

    But I am willing to learn along the way.

    I was thinking about this today and figured out that the only cost-effective way to do this is to bring everthing inhouse. Which means hiring staff to do the mundane work,scraping domains/PBN's instead of buying them off sellers, doing individual press releases instead of doing it through PR agencies.

    Will require quite a bit of groundwork.
    No. You got it wrong. I never said I was shocked that US wages/salary is more than India. I said I was shocked to see the actual difference.
    But let's not fuss on that. I'm sure we both have better things to do with our time
     
  16. Zerzar

    Zerzar Junior Member

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    You need to charge less than your competition at least in the beginning.
     
  17. luminus

    luminus Junior Member

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    You really need to know what the competition is. When I lived in Tennessee, many businesses would balk at paying $130/month for the service of having a website set up and maintained and having basic SEO done. But other companies here charge $100,000 for a website - if it's for a big client with a hugely important website (like a local tourist attraction).

    You need to know

    1) What you can deliver and how much it costs you

    2) What your competition is offering/charging

    3) What your clients have paid, or similar clients have paid, in the past

    The cost you charge is entirely up to you. You might charge 5x the reasonable cost and only get one client, but that might be more valuable than 5 clients at the lower rate. You could try testing different amounts for each client to see if one sticks, as well.
     
  18. Phenomix

    Phenomix Regular Member

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    The fact that the US has significantly higher wages than India IS the difference, buddy. That was the exact comparison that you made. If you have no idea what you are saying and you take other peoples words out of context, how are you going to run a successful business?
     
  19. ben223

    ben223 Newbie

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    That's right - think about what western companies do, we hire Indian workers for that kind of work and pay them (compared to our salaries) almost nothing. I imagine you can do even better (in terms of costs) as you're living in India and can hire them even cheaper than most western companies + you can take care of the quality yourself.

    I really don't know if you guys got something like we do in Germany, but our Chamber of Commerce and Industry offers courses about starting businesses and what to take care of when doing so charing almost no fee at all. So you might want to find out if you guys got something like this in India as well, as it helps quite a lot people without proper economical/financial knowledge to start a business.
     
  20. living2xl

    living2xl Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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    if your competition charges next to nothing even if they dont get the right results...you will have a hard time convincing them of the value if they are not educated on online marketing and seo even if they earn good everyone wants the highest ROI not just you
    those doctors would want to get results so maybe offer them something like x leads or setup preranked sites that you can rent out to them this way you can show direct value and later upsell them