In November 2022, we surveyed members of the search engine optimization trade to learn the way a lot they cost for search engine optimization providers.

Listed here are the highest 10 takeaways:

- 78.2% of SEOs cost month-to-month retainers for some or all of their providers.
- 54.5% of SEOs solely supply one pricing mannequin (i.e., hourly, retainer, or per-project).
- $501–$1,000 is the most well-liked month-to-month retainer.
- $75–$100 is the most well-liked hourly charge.
- $2,501–$5,000 is the most well-liked per-project charge.
- Fewer than 1 in 10 SEOs (9.9%) cost greater than $150/hour.
- Businesses and consultants cost considerably greater than freelancers.
- There’s a transparent constructive correlation between expertise and charges. (Shocking, proper?)
- Native SEOs cost lower than these with international shoppers.
- SEOs primarily based in India, Central America, and South America cost the least.

Let’s check out every pricing mannequin in additional element.

Sidenote.

We had 439 submissions in complete. Nonetheless, after reviewing them, we eliminated 89, as they have been both duplicates or spam. For instance, many respondents provided an internet site they clearly didn’t personal (e.g., google.com) or had nothing to do with search engine optimization. If a respondent’s website didn’t clearly supply search engine optimization providers, we eliminated them from our pattern.

34.8% of respondents worth some or all of their work by the hour.

We discovered that $75–$100 per hour is the most well-liked hourly charge for SEOs, with 24% of respondents charging this charge.

47% of respondents cost between $75 and $200 per hour.

90% cost $150/hour or much less, and solely 4.1% command an hourly charge of $201+.

Right here’s a breakdown of hourly charges by area:

There’s one clear outlier right here: India.

We discovered 85.7% of India-based SEOs cost an hourly charge of $30 or much less. The remaining 14.3% are within the $51–$60 vary.

Sidenote.

We didn’t have a lot information for some areas, so take the outcomes with a pinch of salt. Additionally, the rationale for grouping Germany, France, Italy, Netherlands, and Spain collectively is that they’re the one European international locations (apart from the U.Okay.) with a GDP of 1 trillion or more. I assumed it will be fascinating to see if the numbers for these international locations have been completely different from the remainder of Europe.

U.S. and Canada information in isolation, 66.7% cost $75–200/hour—over two-thirds!

### Do search engine optimization businesses cost extra per hour than freelancers?

Sure.

58.7% and 58.8% of search engine optimization businesses and consultants respectively command $75+/hour, in comparison with solely 36.6% of freelancers.

Nonetheless, the commonest hourly charge for search engine optimization businesses and freelancers is identical: $75–100/hour.

For search engine optimization consultants, it’s $100–150/hour.

If we assume all surveyed SEOs cost the higher finish of their pricing tier (e.g., $150, from $100–$150), then take the common hourly charge for every subset (Company, Freelance, Consultancy), right here’s what we get:

**Consultancies:**$171.18/hour, on common.**Businesses:**$98.90/hour, on common.**Freelancers:**$71.59/hour, on common.

By these stats, the hourly charge charged by search engine optimization consultants is greater than double that of search engine optimization freelancers.

### Do extra skilled SEOs earn much more per hour?

Sure, they do.

$73.05 is the common hourly charge for SEOs who’ve been in enterprise for 2 years or much less.

This jumps to $97.11 for many who’ve been in enterprise for two–4 years, $102.03 for five–10 years, and $118.35 for 10+ years.

So plainly expertise and observe file play a significant function with regards to hourly earnings.

### Do these providing providers worldwide cost extra per hour than these serving native markets?

Sure, barely.

On common, these providing their providers domestically earn $93.89/hour, whereas these serving the worldwide market earn $106.69/hour.

That’s a distinction of 13.6%.

78.2% of respondents cost a month-to-month retainer for some or all of their work.

We discovered that $501–$1,000 per thirty days is the most well-liked month-to-month retainer charge for SEOs, with 20.4% of respondents charging this charge.

42.8% of respondents cost between $501 and $2,000 per month.

68.8% cost $2,000/month or much less, which means solely 31.2% command retainers of $2,001+.

Right here’s a breakdown of month-to-month retainer charges by area:

As soon as once more, India is a transparent outlier right here.

76% of India-based SEOs cost $1,000 or much less per thirty days. The remaining 24% cost between $2,001 and $10,000.

U.S. and Canada information in isolation, 79.1% cost not less than $1,001 per thirty days—some command as a lot as $25,001–$50,000 per month!

### Do search engine optimization businesses cost extra per thirty days than freelancers?

Sure.

57.4% of search engine optimization businesses command $1,001+/month, in comparison with solely 32.2% of freelancers.

Nonetheless, consultants earn probably the most, with 70.6% commanding $1,001+/month.

The commonest month-to-month retainer vary for search engine optimization businesses is $500–$1,000/month. For consultants, it’s $2,501–$5,000.

For freelancers, it’s $251–$500/month and $101–$500/month.

If we assume all surveyed SEOs cost the higher finish of their pricing tier (e.g., $1,500, from $1,001–$1,500), after which take the common month-to-month retainer charge for every subset (Company, Freelance, Consultancy), right here’s what we get:

**Businesses:**$3,209/month, on common.**Consultancies:**$3,250/month, on common.**Freelancers:**$1,348.63/month, on common.

By these stats, the month-to-month retainer vary charged by search engine optimization businesses and consultants is sort of double that of search engine optimization freelancers.

### Do extra skilled SEOs cost much more per month?

Sure, they do.

$1,540.52 is the common retainer charge for SEOs who’ve been in enterprise for 2 years or much less.

This jumps to $2,023.13 for many who’ve been in enterprise for two+ years. That’s round 33% greater than those that’ve been in enterprise for 2 years or much less.

However the huge bounce comes after 5 years in enterprise. The typical retainer for these in enterprise for five–10 years is $3,648.28—greater than double the speed of these in enterprise for 2 years or much less.

After this, issues stage off considerably. Actually, we noticed a decline in earnings for many who’ve been in enterprise for 10+ years. Nonetheless, that is most likely resulting from us not having loads of information for this subset.

### Do these providing providers worldwide cost extra per thirty days than these serving native markets?

Sure.

These providing their providers domestically cost $1,557.08/month, on common. Whereas these serving the worldwide market earn $3,473.74/month.

That’s a major distinction of 123.1%.

48.9% of respondents cost a per-project charge for some or all of their work.

We discovered that $2,501–$5,000 is the most well-liked per-project charge, with 21.2% of respondents charging this charge.

60.6% of respondents cost $1,001 or extra.

50.6% cost $2,000 or much less, which means that fewer than half of respondents command per-project charges of $2,001+.

Right here’s a breakdown of per-project charges by area:

Yep, you guessed it—India is the outlier.

93.75% of India-based SEOs cost $1,500 or much less. The remaining 6.25% cost between $2,001 and $2,500.

Wanting on the U.S. and Canada in isolation, 83.3% cost not less than $1,001. Some even cost as a lot as $50,001–$75,000 per mission.

### Do search engine optimization businesses cost extra per mission than freelancers?

Sure.

73.3% of search engine optimization businesses command $1,001+ per mission, in comparison with solely 64% of consultants and 40.68% of freelancers.

The commonest per-project charge for freelancers is $101–$250. For search engine optimization businesses, it’s $2,501–$5,000. And for consultants, it’s $5,001–$10,000.

If we assume all surveyed SEOs cost the higher finish of their pricing tier (e.g., $1,500, from $1,001–1,500), after which take the common per-project charge for every subset (Company, Freelance, Consultancy), right here’s what we get:

**Businesses:**$9,507.84/month, on common.**Consultancies:**$8,685.53/month, on common.**Freelancers:**$2,348.63/month, on common.

By these stats, the per-project charge charged by search engine optimization businesses is greater than 4X that of search engine optimization freelancers, on common.

### Do extra skilled SEOs cost much more per mission?

Sure, they do.

$1,881.73 is the common per-project charge charged by those that’ve been in enterprise for 2 years or much less.

This jumps to $2,242.71 for many who’ve been in enterprise for two+ years after which to $9,087.31 for many who’ve been in enterprise 5–10 years.

### Do these providing providers worldwide cost extra per mission than these serving native markets?

Sure—considerably extra!

On common, these providing their providers domestically cost $5,723.53 per mission, whereas these serving the worldwide market cost $8,056.56.

That’s a major distinction of 40.80%.

## Closing ideas

My hope is that this information will assist SEOs to cease undercharging for his or her providers. Sure, the financial outlook could look bleak proper now, however know that search engine optimization is a invaluable talent. Don’t be afraid to cost what you’re value.

Received questions? Ping me on Twitter.