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Website design + online marketing campaign

I decided to bite the bullet and pay some money for a nice website/logo/blog.  I just got off the phone with Scorpion Design, and am interested in their marketing campaign.  For $1500 (split into 2 payments) then $500 a month, they will design my website (custom) and logo, write up to 20 pages of SEO content, create and manage my Adwords campaign plus some other online marketing stuff.

 

Now this seems like a pretty good deal to me, given that I hate writing content and am not real good at it from an SEO perspective.

 

Has anyone had any experiences with them?

Comments

  • samgloversamglover Minneapolis, MN Admin
    Define "20 pages of SEO content."
  • Here is one of their sites, for example, that is related to what I do:

     

    http://www.mydisabilityrights.com/
  • samgloversamglover Minneapolis, MN Admin
    I guess my question is whether the "20 pages of SEO content" are on the website they are designing for you, or somewhere else. It looks like they will be on the website they are designing for you.

    I think $1,500 is a fair price to design a website and logo. (Don't have them start a blog for you unless you are committed to writing for it regularly.) I think $500 per month is a lot of money.

    Will they agree not to represent any other disability lawyers in your state, so that they aren't competing against themselves on SEO? That's the only way I would consider that kind of an ongoing fee, and then only if I were convinced they were able to deliver.
  • Yes, the content is written specifically for my site.  I guess I looked at it this way:  I am spending $500/mo on the YP with absolutely abysmal results.  By the time the site went live and I had to start to pay the $500/mo, my contract with YP would be about over, and I do think it would be better spent on internet marketing than anything else at this this point.

     

    But, good point to find out if they limit who they take by practice area and geography.  
  • Found out that they will take up to four "aggressive marketing campaigns" in an area in the same practice, and that I'd be the first in this area.

     

    Hmm.
  • samgloversamglover Minneapolis, MN Admin
    I don't know what the price for exclusivity ought to be, but I don't think I would want to hire an SEO company without it. There's a huge difference in value between link #1 and link #4.
  • To be honest, living in such a sparsely-populated state, I don't know how many others would sign up with this particular firm in CA.  But you do have a very good point.
  • I'll be careful since they're my competition, but I have had clients who have hired me as a result of bad Scorpion experiences.

    My advice would be to consider your goals - is SEO your ultimate goal? Scorpion's sales pitch is clearly SEO focused and I would argue that while SEO is obviously important, it probably shouldn't be your main goal. Where are your clients coming from now? If you're somewhat established and most of your business is referrals your website needs to look great to convert your referrals. Also, ranking high isn't the end of the process - just because you rank high doesn't mean your website is going to convert a client into calling you.

    I'll also reiterate Sam's comment that $500/month is a lot. In your website's first year you're looking at $7500 (including the initial $1500). What does that cover? All of the items you mentioned seemed like they should be one-time setup costs.
  • When you look at the yearly cost, yes, that does seem like a lot!  Their model does seem to be common, however -- lots of places I looked at or spoke with had a "monthly maintenance fee", even without any extra SEO services.

     Paperstreet wanted $3000 for a template site (choice of about 15 designs) and logo (not custom, either) or $10k for a custom site.

     

    Yikes.
  • You would likely be better off hiring a designer who knows SEO, paying him to set up a site in WordPress and teaching you to update, and then paying him as needed to address ongoing SEO issues. 

     

    This is the route we took, after much research. As a disclaimer, we care little about ranking as the vast majority of our clients come from warm referrals, and we turn down about 50% of the prospective clients who contact us. So I do not bother with the SEO on a regular basis, though it is likely something I should address as we just hired a junior associate and I'm sure she will take some that otherwise we'd have referred out.

     

    Long story short, I paid $2500 for the initial custom design and set up, and got exactly what I wanted. The guy I use makes updates for around $100 (depending on complexity) as I need him to and would do the SEO for around $50 per month the last time we discussed it. MUCH better deal than any of the big services. 

    Feel free to check ours out: http://www.duerlaw.com
  • I ended up hiring Karin Conroy to build my new site.  I'll update with the finished product.
  • gyitsakalakisgyitsakalakis Chicago Admin

    @Inga Stevens said:
    For $1500 (split into 2 payments) then $500 a month, they will design my website (custom) and logo, write up to 20 pages of SEO content, create and manage my Adwords campaign plus some other online marketing stuff.

    Without speaking specifically to Scorpion, it's important to distinguish some things here.

    A logo, custom website, and 20 pages of content fit neatly into project pricing. In other words, a one-time project fee without on-going support, etc.

    Website administration, maintenance, and marketing campaign management tend to be priced on a recurring basis.

    At the end of the day, the value of any of these services should be measured against specific goals defined at the beginning of the engagement. These goals are likely to vary greatly from firm to firm and project to project. For example, design goals might include positive feedback from your target audience about your design and functionality (i.e mobile-friendliness, speed and conversion). On the other hand, goals for a marketing campaign should relate more directly to business metrics (i.e. return on ad spend, etc).

    I'm always a bit skeptical when I hear the phrase "marketing stuff."

    What is that? More importantly, what will do in terms of achieving a marketing objective?

    @Inga Stevens also interested in seeing the finished product!

  • AFFAFF United States

    I think $1500 to $5000 for a website is fair depending on what your goals are for the site, how much you know about what goes into a good site, how much content you want on the site, whether your developer meets you in person, does a skype call, or just has you fill out a form. If you're savvy and want to go with the cheapest person you can find through upwork, you can do it for much less, but then you're not out there practicing law.

    With Scorpion, my guess is that the $500/mo covers managing an Adwords campaign, and a couple of SEO blog posts? Maybe some landing pages and call tracking too? I don't know. That $500/mo is high, but not inordinately high. What do you expect to your adwords budget to be? A lot of vendors will do it on a percentage, which can go above $500 easily.

    A lot of this depends on your goals. If you're in empire building mode, you could easily plan to spend 10 to 20 percent of revenues on marketing.

    If you just want a site to look professional, go with a squarespace design, and get on with practicing law.

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