How Much Should a Local Business Pay for SEO in the UK?

A vital consideration for any business with a digital presence, SEO, otherwise known as search engine optimisation, is essential for several reasons, ranging from credibility to visibility.

While often considered one of the more cost-effective marketing solutions, SEO budgets can vary depending on different factors. However, knowing exactly how much should a local business spend per month on SEO is often far from straightforward.

What is Typically Included When You Pay for SEO?

what is seo in detail

Whether working with an agency or a freelancer, most SEO packages include several actions. Below is what is included when you pay for SEO with most specialists:

  • On-page Optimisation – all actions taken on the website, such as content and navigation
  • Off-page SEO – relates to actions taken away from the website, such as building backlinks
  • Link Building – the creation of links from other websites back to yours
  • Reporting – regular documents detailing website performance in relation to SEO
  • Audit – the process of evaluating the parts of a website which affect performance relating to search engines
  • Issue Fixing – involves diagnosing all issues connected to SEO and resolving them

Other broader packages may also include content marketing and more sophisticated link-building strategies for an additional cost.

Why Pay an Agency for Your SEO?

Hiring an agency to undertake SEO for your business can provide several benefits. The three key advantages include:


Working with an SEO agency ensures you have access to a team of individuals who all specialise within a variety of particular areas. This collective experience can help to create a more coherent strategy through team connections. An agency will also likely have access to the tools, such as Ahrefs or SEMrush, plus knowledge to use them effectively, to perform the work. 


A successful agency will likely have plenty of experience working with similar clients, ensuring they know what works and doesn’t. This knowledge is also much more likely to help avoid costly and time-consuming mistakes.


Whether creating content or building links, SEO is a time-consuming process. Working with an agency allows someone else to undertake the hard work, freeing up time to focus on more-pressing matters for your business.

why pay an agency for seo

How Much Should a Local Business Spend Per Month on SEO?

The cost of SEO for a local business can depend on several factors, including business and project size (the amount of services and locations targeted) and overall goals. Competition, in regard to area, can also impact costs, as extra services, such as content marketing, may be required to help further boost keywords. Price structure can also affect costs, whether that is an hourly rate, monthly retainer or one-off fee for the entire project.

A small to medium sized business typically requires 5 – 10 hours of SEO-focused work a month, which would have a starting cost of around £500. Ecommerce websites are often a bit more complicated and require extra time for optimisation. As such, an Ecommerce business can expect to pay a starting price of around £1000 for 10-12 hours a month of work.

However, it is important to remember that SEO is an on-going process, so it is essential that this is factored into any budget to ensure success.

Depending on the contracts, there may also be payments linked to performance, with missed targets resulting in reduced costs.

How Much Should Local SEO Cost in the UK: Final Thoughts

When it comes to how much a local business should pay for SEO in the UK, there is no one-size-fits-all answer. Factors such as business size, competitiveness of keywords and objectives all need to be considered when it comes to building an overall idea of cost.

However, with the variety of benefits offered by a well-implemented SEO campaign, including increased visibility and improved credibility, the costs can be a great investment for a business.

If you would like to discover more about SEO for Local Businesses, visit our Help & Advice pages.

More Articles

Join Our Mailing List

Get notified of the latest blog posts