Are you asking yourself, “How much does marketing cost for small business”? No business can exist without marketing to customers. Unfortunately, the old adage “build it and they will come” doesn’t apply to small businesses. You’ll need to attract customers, grow your business and increase your profits.

Nothing happens by accident.

Deciding how much to spend on online advertising often leaves small business owners scratching their heads. While the big boys like Coca-Cola or McDonald’s have a seemingly unlimited marketing budget, that’s not the case for small businesses.

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That’s where cheap digital advertising comes in. Using a fraction of a traditional advertising budget, you can reach your target audience, generate sales, and save money. Sounds too good to be true? It’s not.

Learning how much marketing costs, the average advertising costs for small businesses, and how to make the most of your marketing firm’s costs with cheap digital advertising below.

How much does marketing cost for small business?

According to the US Small Business Administration, you should spend around 7% to 8% of your revenue on marketing – if you’re achieving less than $5 million in sales per year.

While the figure serves as a useful benchmark, it does not apply to all industries at all times.

What’s more important is the return on investment (ROI). If you generate $6 in revenue for every dollar you spend, investing more in marketing is a no-brainer. Of course, business is never this simple. Nevertheless, with this powerful metric, you can monitor the effectiveness of your marketing strategy.

Marketing strategies typically yield less effectiveness with time. Otherwise, every company would end up a billion-dollar giant. New companies can spend 50% of revenue in marketing to rapidly expand their client base, whereas more established businesses see their marketing budget go from 1% to over 30% of their revenue.

It also depends on your marketing strategy. Pursuing a print and broadcast ads strategy will cost substantially more than cheap digital advertising. Online advertising costs can also differ: SEO, for example, is more affordable than paid search results but takes time to ramp up.

Average advertising costs for small business

Whether you’re a furniture store, restaurant, amusement arcade, or dentist, the average advertising costs for small businesses can differ significantly.

Industry experts recommend earmarking somewhere between 1% to 10% for advertising and marketing – with the bulk spent on online advertising costs.

Here’s a breakdown of the average advertising cost for small businesses by industry:

Source: DoNotPay

Online Advertising Cost by Technique

1. Search engine optimization (SEO)

SEO is firmly in the cheap digital advertising category. For around $1,500 to $5,000 per month, you can generate blog posts, update landing pages, build links, and speed up your site’s functioning to improve your ranking in Google and other search engines.

The logic is simple: people who search for your website or a related term are more likely to buy your services. In addition, unlike paid searches, the cost of SEO is one-off. Once a blog post is written and published on your site, it’s there forever. All you need to do is to keep building backlinks and tracking metrics to maintain your ranking.

Oh, and keep producing SEO content – the more content, the more keywords, the more chance of customers landing on your site.

SEO will devour more of your firm’s marketing costs depending on:

  • The number of site pages
  • The number of keywords you want to target
  • The amount of content you want to produce
  • Your industry’s competitiveness

2. Pay-per-click (PPC) advertising

Pay-per-click advertising (PPC), also known as paid search, involves bidding against competitors for keywords. If your bid is successful, you’ll be shown in the sponsored section at the top of the search rankings.

Expect to spend $2,000 to $50,000 per month bidding on keywords. Depending on your settings, you can automatically blow through that with a few pricey keywords – something you need not worry about with SEO.

However, PPC advertising does ensure you’re ranked at the top of the page. And, best of all, you only pay when a customer clicks on your ad. You can set your budget and max bids, and Google’s algorithm does the rest. Still, you’ll need to keep spending month after month compared to SEO, where content stacks over time.

3. Web design

Your website is the center of your online presence. It’s where all your links and ads lead back. You want an attractive design filled with SEO content. While you can build a website using the online web builder, you’ll receive a much higher quality site through a professional builder. It can raise your firm’s marketing costs by $5,000 to $100,000 – for a one-time project fee.

The cost of the site depends on:

  • The number of pages
  • Level of functionality
  • Quantity of copywriting needed
  • The originality of the design

While web design isn’t cheap digital advertising, it is effective. And considering it’s a one-time fee, it’s worth investing in a quality site.

4. Social media

No modern business is complete without a social media presence. You’ll want to invest in social media, producing regular, informative posts that drive engagement. Like SEO, social media is a relatively cheap digital advertising method with a high pay-off from consistent posting.

You can expect to pay a similar amount, $1,500 to $5,000 per month, for post creation and copywriting. Try to aim for two or more posts per week. You’ll also need to decide where to spend your money – spreading your resources too thinly across multiple social media sites can yield fewer results than focusing on two or three primary platforms.

Need Advertising for your Small Business?

Are you looking for a cost-effective advertising campaign for your small business? The SEO and PPC experts at Clicta Digital understands what it takes to implement an effective, results-driven marketing campaign. Contact us today for a free consultation!