How much does SEO cost in the UK? 

SEO stands for Search Engine Optimisation and it’s the process of creating and optimising content (written and visual) to be discovered through a search engine’s results. 

SEO has become an essential part of a digital marketing strategy for brands and business of every size.

Understanding SEO and the UK costs

Before we dive into details, it’s important to keep in mind that the cost of SEO services depends on:

  • the size of your website,
  • the experience of the SEO agency
  • the location of your business
  • the competition in your industry
  • your overall marketing objectives.

SEO Pricing Models

SEO pricing models usually may include:

  • one-time charges
  • monthly retainers
  • hourly rates
  • or project-based pricing model depending on the task

SEO pricing varies, with options like one-time fees, monthly retainers with affordable packages of £500 to  more premium SEO services with £5000 – £7000/month, hourly rates from £75 to £1000 and project-based costs (£1000 to £30,000) based on complexity).

SEO performance audits are an important part of the decision making process when creating an SEO strategy and providing project fees.

seo for luxury brands

SEO services pricing: UK Edition

Local and national/international SEO services have different costs. Additionally, SEO expenses can change as search engine algorithms, like Google’s, keep evolving. Businesses should be ready for potential shifts in SEO costs.

Staying adaptable to the ever-changing nature of search engine optimisation is crucial for businesses. As algorithms evolve, SEO strategies must also adjust to ensure optimal online visibility. 

Things to consider before paying for SEO

This adaptability is especially important when considering the variations in costs between local and national/international SEO services. By being prepared for potential shifts in SEO expenses, businesses can navigate the dynamic digital landscape more effectively and maintain a competitive edge in online visibility.

Before getting a price for an SEO strategy from an SEO marketing agency or from an SEO consultant, it’s important to ask, “How much value can SEO bring to my brand or business?” With this in mind, businesses can invest in SEO based on the potential ROI, rather than looking only at the service cost.

For business owners or marketing managers looking to use their budget wisely, grasping the diverse factors affecting SEO costs in the UK is essential. SEO isn’t a one-size-fits-all service; its cost fluctuates based on the size of the business, the niche and industry, and specific requirements that you need to cover to achieve your marketing goals.

How much does SEO costs in the UK? What are you paying for?

1. Online tools, platforms and resources for research and analysis

SEO is a super competitive field and if you’d like to receive premium SEO services, then it’s best to work with an agency that uses premium online tools and SEO platforms for keyword, market and competitor research.

The insight gathered from all SEO tools is highly valuable during the initial SEO strategy phase since it determines the foundation of the SEO plan and all the implemented tasks. 

SEO tools like Ahrefs, MOZ, and SEM rush have a monthly subscription plan that can range from £79 to £799 monthly, depending on the billing plan the SEO agency or the SEO consultant has selected.

how much does SEO cost
@Ahrefs Pricing

Partnering with an SEO agency that uses premium tools for keyword and competitor research is something to ask for during a discovery call.

You might be asked to be more than initially expected, however it’s an investment that will increase ROI and generate profit by bringing more traffic and leads.

Why should you pay extra if an SEO agency uses expensive tools for research like Ahrefs?

  1. Advanced Analytics: Premium SEO tools often offer more sophisticated analytics and reporting capabilities that will help the team in the decision-making process with access to more accurate data. This allows the consultant to gather and analyse SEO stats more comprehensively, providing deeper insights into the performance of your website and the effectiveness of SEO strategies.

  2. Accurate Data: Premium tools tend to provide more accurate and up-to-date data. This is crucial for making informed decisions and adjustments to your SEO strategy, ensuring that you are working with reliable information.

  3. Competitive Edge: Premium tools often come with features that help identify and analyse competitors. Understanding your competitive landscape is essential for devising strategies that can give you a competitive edge in the online market.

2. Costs that reflect the SEO Expertise and Industry Knowledge

Another important thing to keep in mind is that you are not paying just for an SEO strategy or consultancy hours, but for the industry insights that can make your brand stand out. This is essential in competitive industries such as e-commerce SEO, fintech and beauty and skincare SEO.

This specific industry expertise combined with general SEO experience is the best combination that can help your business achieve top Google results.

The most popular hourly rate for SEO agencies based in the UK is  £75–150/hour.

Sometimes you might want to work with an SEO freelancer instead of an SEO Constant/SEO Agency thinking it will be more affordable. However, it seems that SEO freelancers currently charge the same as SEO agencies for their services.

If you come across an SEO consultancy that seems too affordable, chances are they are inexperienced marketers looking to expand their portfolio and their tactics might not always be white-hat and aligned with Google algorithm updates.

Deciding to go for inexpensive SEO services can come with drawbacks that might damage your brand’s reputation online.

If a deal seems too good to be true, it likely is. Cheap SEO might appear cost-effective initially and might be within your budget, especially if you are a startup, but it often falls short in providing the thorough approach needed to optimise a website for Google’s ever-evolving algorithms. While these budget-friendly SEO services may seem appealing, they often rely on generic, one-size-fits-all strategies that lack customisation, which is essential for organic growth.

This approach can negatively impact your site’s online presence and, in the worst-case scenario, may result in penalties from Google.

seo services

SEO Monthly Cost (on average)

SEO Business Model


£50 — £600 Individuals and hyper-local businesses with low competition benefit from basic on-site SEO and technical maintenance. A dedicated SEO consultant guides the strategy, steadily improving online presence.

£700 — £10,000

Most SMEs fall into this bracket, requiring a comprehensive SEO campaign. Services encompass general copywriting, blog strategy, PR/link building, and potential UX improvements. This level is suitable for both established and new businesses looking for substantial and sustained growth.


£6,000+ Reserved for enterprise-level businesses, large corporations, government agencies, and educational institutions. Tailored for extensive websites handling significant customer traffic, this level addresses high complexity, often involving non-SEO services such as website builds or migrations.

3. Link-Building Fees

What can also increase the SEO costs in the UK is the link-building strategy. No SEO plan is complete without strong backlinks to boost main keywords, so it’s important to invest in link-building from authority websites that will increase not only your keyword rankings but also improve your brand awareness and visibility.

Link-building services can be purchased on their own or be part of an SEO package; they might add an additional £500 per month (or less based on the agreed secured links).

Quality SEO costs but it’s worth the investment

Quality SEO involves a more thorough, bespoke  organic approach that prioritises the brand and its values along with the specific marketing needs. 

For example, a quality SEO approach involves in-depth keyword research tailored to your specific industry and target audience. This goes beyond selecting generic keywords and delves into understanding the nuanced search queries that potential customers use. This level of precision ensures that your content is not only optimized for search engines but also resonates effectively with your audience.

Paying for SEO in the UK: Quality Packages benefits

Contrast this with cheap SEO services that might rely on automated tools for keyword selection, use generic content templates, and overlook technical aspects. While these approaches may provide short-term boosts, they lack the sustainability and long-term benefits associated with a high-quality, personalised SEO strategy.

For instance, a quality SEO approach may involve implementing schema markup to provide search engines with more detailed information about your content. This not only helps search engines understand your content better but also enhances the appearance of your listings in search results, making them more enticing to users.

This  personalised strategy ensures that your website’s visibility on Google is increased organically and sustainably. 

While the initial cost may be higher and it’s normal to be sceptical, the return on investment tends to be far greater in the long run if SEO is properly executed.

 This goes beyond merely boosting your ranking on search engine results pages (SERPs) and extends to increasing your brand’s overall digital footprint, which is the main goal for all brands and businesses we work with. 

The detailed, customised approach provided by quality SEO guarantees an improved user experience, leading to higher organic conversions, a better rate of client retention, and more profitable results overall.

@LinkBuilder Monthly Pricing

It’s not surprising that working with an SEO Consultant that has at least more than 5 years of experience and industry knowledge, will be organically beneficial for your brand when it comes to keyword rankings and online visibility.

However, there’s no guarantee when it comes to SEO so even the most experienced SEO agency might not get you the results you’re looking for no matter their monthly retainer fee.

How much does SEO cost in the UK? Most expensive SEO services

  • Ecommerce/Shopify SEO
  • Local SEO
  • Link-Building
  • Large Corporation SEO
  • International SEO
  • SEO assets (images, infographics, videography)
  • SEO Content Marketing
  • SEO-friendly Website design

More affordable SEO services:

how much does seo cost

How can you tell if the UK SEO costs are worth it?

➡ When evaluating the worth of your SEO investment, it’s helpful to compare the cost of acquiring traffic through SEO to what it would cost through paid search advertising. In essence, you’re conducting a cost-benefit analysis to determine the value of your SEO efforts.

➡ If the cost per visit through SEO is lower than what it would be through paid search, it indicates that your SEO strategy is delivering value.

➡ Beyond cost, consider the quality of traffic. Organic traffic from SEO often includes users genuinely interested in your content, products, or services, potentially leading to higher conversion rates.

➡ That’s why we always recommend having a strong SEO strategy in place to make sure your brand grows sustainably in a way that reflects your values, mission as well as the effectiveness of your products and services.

Appearing on top of Google search is the ultimate flex: 

  • you don’t need to invest in Google ads to showcase your business, your keyword rankings are a digital proof of your success. 

Set SEO Goals before purchasing an SEO Package

By linking SEO goals to concrete metrics like organic sessions, conversions, and revenues, businesses can not only measure the effectiveness of their SEO efforts but also align their digital strategies with tangible business growth.

Setting specific goals for your SEO campaign is crucial for strategic success.

For instance, aiming to improve organic sessions by a certain percentage involves meticulous keyword research, on-page optimisation, and the creation of compelling content to boost website visibility.

The goal of increasing conversions by a specified number per month requires strategic adjustments to landing pages, ensuring a clear value proposition and compelling calls-to-action. 

Lastly, the objective of enhancing revenues by a certain percentage aligns SEO efforts with the overarching business goal, involving a comprehensive approach to drive qualified traffic and optimise user experiences. 

Regular monitoring and analysis using tools like Google Analytics are essential to measure progress, identify areas for improvement, and adapt strategies to achieve these measurable outcomes.

Through these targeted goals, businesses can not only enhance their online presence but also drive tangible business growth through increased conversions and revenues.

Expensive SEO Packages: How to partner with an SEO agency or a new prospect 

Offering a trial package with a lower price and no contract can be a mutually beneficial strategy.

For clients, it provides a low-risk opportunity to assess the quality and suitability of SEO services without committing to a long-term contract. 

This approach fosters transparency and trust, allowing brands to experience the offerings before making a more substantial commitment, especially since SEO costs quite a lot in the UK.

On the agency or SEO Consultant side, the trial period serves as a chance to showcase the value of their services and expertise, potentially leading to long-term partnerships. 

However, careful consideration is needed to ensure the sustainability of such trial SEO packages for the provider and to manage expectations effectively, avoiding potential misunderstandings.

An SEO Agency, we make sure to set realistic expectations for all the brands we work with, focusing on strict timelines that allow them to see the first rankings.

Overall, when implemented thoughtfully, this approach can be a valuable means of building trust, acquiring new clients, and demonstrating the efficacy of services.

➡ If you don’t have the time or the resources to learn SEO yourself (we wouldn’t recommend it if you are a brand/business owner since it can be time consuming), then do your research and talk with a few SEO Consultants before choosing a package that meets your marketing needs.


The diversity in how SEO companies operate leads to differing prices for their services. Elements like the location of the agency, payroll expenses, and external factors contribute to the variations in costs. This customised approach reflects the unique characteristics and circumstances of each SEO consultancy.

The SEO cost per hour can range from around £75 to over £1000 per. Do your research for each SEO service, get multiple quotes and proposals and go with the agency/consultancy that best works for your budget and needs. 

While we strive for the best results, guaranteeing specific rankings is not ethical in the SEO industry. Search algorithms are complex and continually changing. We focus on delivering long-term value, increased visibility, and improved website performance. With 10 years experience in the SEO landscape, we recommend staying away from agencies that guarantee results.


While we strive for the best results, guaranteeing specific rankings is not ethical in the SEO industry. Search algorithms are complex and continually changing. We focus on delivering long-term value, increased visibility, and improved website performance. With 10 years experience in the SEO landscape, we recommend staying away from agencies that guarantee results.

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