Pricing has to be the most difficult part of any business. Seriously folks, I know that all aspects of starting a business are hard, but pricing seems to the hardest. I know this from my past experience in start-ups. It has also been reinforced by the number of SEO resellers who call to talk about our pricing. We understand, we really do. We've built companies too. And we know that a product that is poorly priced is the kiss of death. Too high and your customers leave you for lower priced options. This puts you out of business. Too low and you don't cover expenses or make enough money to keep your interest. Again - Out of business. Neither of these outcomes are good.
So where do we land with regard to our SEO reseller program? We aim right for the middle. There are certainly cheaper SEO reseller options available. Particularly if you search for a tiny sole proprietor shop in India. We've been down that road. Both as a customer (prior to HubShout) and while doing market research. The honest truth is that you get what you pay for. And the very low-end services in India deliver very low-end results.
On the extreme other end, you have really high priced SEO services. Some SEO resellers aspire to service this market. But we don't really aim there either. In a very high-end SEO engagement, you need to put a serious amount of effort into consulting. This is time consuming and you are ultimately selling your time. It is quite difficult to scale a consulting business as the clients all want the most senior member of the team on their engagement. There are only so many hours in the week.
For us, the answer is to aim in the middle. And we tell our SEO resellers this also. When you are selling, be prepared to lose some deals to 'lower-cost options.' But take heart, those people will be great candidates in about 90-120 days. That's about how long it will take for them to realize that their $99 / month directory submission package is getting them absolutely nothing in terms of SEO. A good sales person let's that prospect walk away with a pleasant departure knowing that they may well come back. Follow best practice and log all your notes in your CRM so when they call back you can instantly pick up the conversation as if you've been thinking about them all along.
The other great aspect about being priced in the middle is that your customer retention is solid. On the low end, SEO vendors expect constant customer churn because their tactics don't work. On the high end, there is churn because the service is so expensive. If you can find a little spot in the middle, where you make enough money to really help the rankings, but not so much that you have to re-justify your existence every month, you have found a comfortable home. These are the SEO resellers that really make a dent and build a solid business for themselves.