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What is the problem with cheap SEO services?

From my research online, SEO seems much cheaper to outsource overseas. In your opinion, do you think there are any problems with cheap SEO services?

Top voted answer
Keith Rowley

Keith Rowley, Joint Owner and Customer Strategist at

SEO is so poorly understood, that it's difficult to know from which angle to address these questions.
I encounter many customers who've know they need SEO and who have tried it and been 'bitten'. That's not always because they're 'cheap' - many bad suppliers are very expensive. It's because they're amateurs.

So I'll define it in this way - SEO is expensive if you're employong  an amateur posing as a professional and no matter how much momey you spend, you won't get a return on your investment.

Many  reputable SEO suppliers do outsource their actual links and guest posts, press releases and so forth and add a fair margin for their expertise. The expertise is applied to buying high quality SEO product from reputable suppliers (who are also experts) taailored for your business. But if your consultant is an amateur, he/she can buy expensive product that's simply not necessary and/or not suitable for you.

An example - Some websites need very little SEO beyond good on-site metadata, testimonials, good GMB site and a layer of links. There are a host of SEO products such businesses don't need.

So this is it, regardless of price: AMATEUR = EXPENSIVE
 never think in terms of /cheap' or 'expensibe' - think in terms of investment and return. Cheap with no return = very, very expensive. High cost with good return = cheap! This is really all a question of meausing VALUE.
Hope that helps.

Luat Duong

Luat Duong, SEO Lead at

Cheap is not an indicator of whether you should or shouldn't hire them. They might be cheap because it is cheaper to live in their respective country!

The indicator you should check out is the backlink profile of their previous customers and what their practice is.

Do they submit your links to a bunch of spammy websites? Do they do black-hat stuff like insert your link into the comment of some random, irrelevant blogs? Do they write 300 words, plug blog post on their network of blogs and call it a day?

That's terrible, by the way. Google can penalize you and you will lose your investment.

Do they create content for your blog, reach out to relevant contact, do broken link building, do resource page link building, do a site audit, do a PR stunt?

That's amazing, if you get that for cheap, you have a solid SEO freelancer.


Hatty Bell

Hatty Bell, Community Manager at

Great perspective @Luat Duong 

Hatty Bell

Hatty Bell, Community Manager at

It would be great to hear your thoughts on this one too @Rod Wills 

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