The Father of Search Engine Optimization Bruce Clay Teaches the True Costs of Content Creation – A Knowledge Bomb

Show Notes

How much does 1,000 words of search engine optimization text content cost? The Father of Search Engine Optimization and the best-selling author of Search Engine for Dummies breaks down the true costs of outsourcing the writing of your search engine content.

NOTABLE QUOTABLE – “People absolutely commit to doing something and then they unconditionally don’t”  – Bruce Clay (Author of SEO for Dummies)

NOTABLE QUOTABLE – “There ain’t no easy button in SEO” – Bruce Clay (Author of SEO for Dummies)

NOTABLE QUOTABLE – “SEO is done when google stops changing things and all of your competition is dead.” – Bruce Clay (Author of SEO for Dummies)

AMPLE EXAMPLE – The Pioneer Woman –  

  1. 18,200 pages of content

AMPLE EXAMPLE – The Art Of Manliness –

  1. 3,830 pages of content

AMPLE EXAMPLE – Momastery –

  1. 1,820 pages of content
Business Coach | Ask Clay & Z Anything

Audio Transcription

Two men, 13 multimillion dollar businesses, eight kids, one business conferences radio show. It’s the thrive time business coach radio show. Get ready to enter the thrive time show.

All right, thrive nation. Welcome back to another edition of the thrive time show and another knowledge bomb. I quick epiphany. A quick little nugget of knowledge chip. Let’s say you’re out there and you’re not using the thrive time show business conferences coaching system and you just want to hire somebody to write high quality content for your website. Let’s just say you want to get to the top of Google and you want to pay someone to write content for you. Um, I would recommend that you would hire an expert. So on today’s show we have the father of search engine optimization, Bruce Clay on today’s show. Now, Bruce Clay is the author of search engine for dummies. Uh, have you ever heard of the concept of disavowing backlinks, a twin, a back link? It’s when some other website links to you and you want them not to link to you.

You can disavow the backlink. Bruce Lee. Bruce Clay is the one who came up with that idea vintage. He worked with Google to do that. He is the one who is a documented the search engine strategies and algorithms that allow companies to get to the top of Google. He is the world’s authority on search engine optimization. So I thought, Jeff, let’s go ahead and ask our good friend Bruce Clay to come onto the show and let’s ask him what he would charge a client with his company. It’s a real company that’s not a theoretical concept. This is what he does everyday. This is how this company generates millions of dollars every day. Um, we’re gonna. Ask him directly, what would, what would it cost to have somebody else write content for your website if you’re too busy to write the content yourself. And so without any further ado, back to our exclusive interview with Bruce, the search engine expert guru play.

Well, we have large projects where they don’t have the team to do it. Uh, under normal circumstances. I would look at you in that particular case and think of you as the subject matter expert. So we would partner with you and we could write the draft, you can finish it, we can editorialize it and make it ready for Seo. And then as a partnership we publish it. That’s the way most of our writing projects are actually structured. Because when you’re doing that for a technical business at all, then you’re not going to be the subject matter expert if you went to somebody and this my opinion. But if you went to somebody and said, hi, I want 200 pages on this topic, you’re going to get 200 pages of absolute garbage.

Oh yeah. Total garbage, complete garbage.

And that really annoys me. Um, you have to spend time to do the page, right, to do the research. The average 1000 word page is supposed to take about three hours and it isn’t just writing, it’s edit editing and it’s, uh, making sure that you have sources in which image do you put on the page? And it’s far more complex. And what we find with our clients, be it good or especially the small guys, what we find is that they absolutely commit to doing it. And then they unconditionally don’t

wait. Repeat that again. That, that right. They’re going to put that on a tee shirt. I’m gonna. Put them in a hat. I want to embroider that on my head and get a tattoo on my leg. Can you please repeat that? That was powerful.

The, the companies absolutely commit to writing the business conferences content because they’re the experts. They want to do that. But then they don’t write it. The company’s absolutely commit to writing the content because they’re the business conferences experts. They want to do that. But then they don’t. Right.


it is unfortunate, but that is the case and we’ve had many projects where we become the company’s writing team and. But if it is technical at all, we still need them to read it.

So what do you charge to write an article? I mean, if you’re going to write a thousand words for somebody, I mean you’re going to charge them $6, $12, seven cents. I mean, because a lot of companies in India right now, and you’re, you’re aware of this Mr Bruce. I mean, you’re a couple companies in India, companies based in China right now, uh, companies in the Middle East will say, I will write you an article right now for $9. I mean, what, what would you charge somebody to write a thousand word page of content?

Well, the, we’re back to the cheaper you want it, the cheaper you get it. I think that one of the problems that you run into internationally is they do not have a shared experience with you as the author. And so they make assumptions about your target persona person. They assume things about what it is that you do for a living and what your product should do and why people should use it. And it hardly ever matches reality in a different country. So we believe that every country has to write their own product, a content. So in our case, what is the right price? It varies. If it’s a thousand words and it’s going to take three hours, it’s a few hundred dollars.

So at 200, so $200, $200 for a quality, you know, maybe thousand word article. You think $200 is that, is that. Is that going to low

average and you think maybe because the low average, if it is more technical, it takes longer. Now when you look at the results in the search engines, typically the top ranked sites have more words on the pages. Then the sites below that

chop. You’ve been teaching the search engine optimization to your clients for years. You’ve seen me do it for over 12 years now. What percentage of the time? Yep. Do clients that you’ve worked with write their own content? He said that almost every time a client will say, I’m going to write my content myself. I want to ride high quality. I want to write a high quality blog. I’m a home builder. I’m a contractor, I’m a plumber, I am a whatever you are, and I want to write the content myself so that it’s good and you point out to the nets. Cool. But in order to beat your competition, you will need 2000 pages. What percentage of the time have they ever written their own content themselves to thus surpass and beat their competition in search engine? The search engine ranks zero, zero, zero times. I have say when you were saying that, I, I, this is what I heard. Maybe you can see. This is why I thought you just said I am your.


did you say something when you talk it through a fan saying the word loose.

I said zero. So I’ve had some clients that have actually written some content, but I have not had any clients that have written the total amount twice as much as their competition has to therefore surpassed them on their own. Good. Tell the listeners a little story about my life story time. Um,

I don’t do well with working around people on things that require critical thinking. So I don’t do well with like deep strategy when I’m around people. So my wife knows this. She could vouch for the story. No one else can except for my kids, but it does because it’s really, it’s a disturbing visual. But I would get in our Jacuzzi bathtub and I would wear, I would type articles everyday with my laptop and I had a little shelter that came out and I would just type and type and type and I wrote every single page on Dj website. This is before I sold the company to. Yeah. And I’m not exaggerating. We had thousands of pages of content and we absolutely got to the top of Google in Dallas and in Tulsa. And then the technology began to become available. Now there’s companies like lucky orange or that will show you what users do when they’re on a website.

And I remember one of the early tools, I put it on the site and I’m talking to a web guy and it was Kinda like I paid a web company the time. I’m no exaggeration, like three grand a month to optimize my site, but I have to write all my own content. Right? Yeah. And I found out later they were doing nothing. But anyway, I was paying them and I remember hopping in a meeting with them and I said, hey, which one, which one of my articles are people reading the most, you know, I want to know, they’ll help me like, strategize what articles and topics, and I’m writing articles about how to do the first dance, how to do the father of the bride dance, had the origins of the cake cutting, how to do a grand introduction, how to roll out the barrel.

I wrote how to do the Cha Cha slide the cupid shuffle that, the chicken dance. I wrote all these articles I wrote about each and every one of our Djs, how we trained them, what kind of speakers we used, how we started the company, um, the history where the company was going and I. True Story. I’m in the meeting and I’m like, so can you show me? And the guy’s like, yeah, yeah, we’ll put it on here. And this is called an overlay. It’s called a heat map. And it’s going to show you where people are reading. You’ll see on there, by the way, you can use a tool today called This will, we’ll do this, but back in the day, my web company had to do this and they said, we’re going to show you right now where they’re, where they’re clicking, where they’re looking, and we’d go to the site and I noticed everyone’s clicking on my phone number.

Then this is back, this is before you could click to call now you can just click the phone number on a website and they’ll call the person is. They would click on it, fill out the contact me form and he goes, and then you’re getting a lot of traffic over here. And I said, put my articles over here where it says articles across the top. He goes, oh, well, um, you have a bounce rate of x percent and what does that mean? He goes, I’m the average person reads about two seconds of your articles. And I said, well, buy blah blah blah. But are you saying because I wrote these all myself and there’s over 2000 and I’m guys, I’m not exaggerating. This is real real stuff. I remember 2000 articles and at the time I got to where I could write an article about two hours. Okay, so it’s 2000 times to for thousands. It’s $4,000 and you divide that by like a 40 hour work week. I was. I spent 100 weeks of my life writing content and the web guy goes up getting all raising and pruned up in the back. I’m not kidding. I mean every morning from like 3:00 AM to like nine and Vanessa. And I remember coming back and I said, Babe, the web guy said nobody has ever did. He can tell, read my articles.

So I thought this truly can. This truly cannot be true. Surely, surely this

surely you can’t be serious. I am serious. And don’t call me Shirley. So I thought

this cannot be true. So I changed the phone script so the DJ connection would say, thank you for calling dj connection. This is a DJ mark. How can I help you? And the customer would say, I’m looking to book a Dj and it’s a great. How’d you hear about us? Everyone would say online or referral. That was pretty much my big two and over time, wedding shows and referrals from venues, but it was at that time it was all internet and it was all referrals and they’d say, oh, the Internet. So I added part of the scripture. It said, well, a lot of people tell us that. Go to our website and read the articles. Which one is your favorite? And I am not kidding. Thousands of people over and over, they have a tally mark. My guys would put a tally mark and I’d say, clay, nobody again this week has ever read one of your articles.

And I’m thinking to myself, gosh, that’s terrible. Because the good thing is no, no, no. Okay. So I started writing better articles. So I started citing things. I started quoting the Dotcom because that’ll help in modern bride did. I’m not kidding. I, I signed it. All these things I really, I got to, I got books about, uh, the, the button, the Bar Mitzvahs, bat mitzvahs. I got books about weddings and decor and I had got all the and and I and then I wrote more articles and I’m not excited. I probably wrote another 500 articles. You’ve got about 2,500 articles on that website, top in Google phone ringing all the time and I’m spending all of my free time, all of it. Writing articles. I go back to the web guy to web guys, I don’t know how to tell you this, but it looks like no one likes your articles.

And I’m like, but how would we know if they liked them or not? They’re literally clicking on them for like two seconds. He goes, well, if you added like videos or pictures, people would spend longer on the site, but you have a high bounce rate. And I said, so his. Now one thing you could do to improve it as you put a video on it. So I put a video on the page. They’ll watch the video goes, yeah, I go, but they’re not gonna read the article isn’t exactly as it. So why the freedom I have to write these articles. And he says, well, because that’s whoever has the most content gets to be top. And I said so, but if you said it has to be high quality content, he said it does have to be high quality, um, but no one’s going to read it.

And it just blew my mind that. So long story short, um, if you’re out there and you have a big brand, like a, I’d say like a pioneer woman, um, and you want to have high quality articles written, you’re going to have to pay somebody who’s going to write an article. It usually takes somebody about three to four hours to write. There’s a blog called the monastery. I want to put it on the show notes. Check the, uh, the pioneer woman and the mom austerity, the monastery or the art of manliness. Put that one too. Let’s put the pioneer woman, the art of manliness in the monastery. There’s the three blogs I can think of that are highly, uh, they’re, they’re well written. Um, so right now the pioneer woman has 15,000 pages indexed in Google, 15,000. So if you wanted to beat her in search engines, you would need 15,000, three hour chunks of time to write those articles, assuming that she never ads any more content that’s 45,000 hours, right years.

So what we do with our clients is we encourage you to do a podcast that you business conferences  transcribe or that you would have our team write those articles for you. Now if our team writes those articles for you, um, we will do them for you and our cost comes in between 12 and $15 per article to write those articles. And that is because our team knows just enough about your industry and one person, it takes them about an hour to write that article and they get about eight bucks for doing it, seven bucks all in. There’s multiple people working together. Then the next phase is someone has to upload the article. Then someone has to weave in the key words. Then somebody else has to qc quality control. There’s four people and then somebody has to provide an office space for those people and to motivate and train those people.

And now you’re talking about 12 to $15 per article, Bruce Clay and his team, right? Unbelievable. Almost like art. Awesome articles. So big brands love using them. So if you can afford to pay $300 per article for great articles, $200 per article for great articles, I encourage you to hire Bruce Clay. But if you can’t, I would submit that we have the best search engine optimization program in the world for small business owners. If you’re big, you’re a big business owner like Forbes, chop, chop, you know Forbes gets older, articles, reach out to people, have people reach out to them, they reach out to people like me and say, Hey, could you write an article? So I did the most recent article I wrote for Forbes. If you Google my name, Clay Clark, Forbes took John and I, I think we went through for proofs before it got approved by the Forbes editorial department.

And I know the person who works for Forbes editing articles does not make 20,000 a year. And I know they’re making a lot more than that. And I know that I specifically spent over 10 hours of one weekend writing that article because I’m a slow writer, so I, if you’re out there and you say, Hey, I’d rather write articles myself. Cool. Then I want you to block out a 1000, three hour chunks of time and go and get started there buddy. So that’s the chip. That’s the reality of search engine optimization is how it works. And Bruce Clay has a quote where he says, there is no easy button for Seo. That’s the way this nation, sorry for this discouraging message, but that is how search engines work. And if you feel overwhelmed about search engines and you want to learn all the details, book your ticket to our next in person, thrive time show workshop today by going to thrive time It is the world’s highest rated and most reviewed a business workshop. Uh, and if you want to attend the workshop for free, you want to save yourself $250. Just subscribed to the podcast on itunes and leave us an objective review. And that email is proof that you did it to info at thrive time show.


Chuck, you know, we almost forgot to do what are we almost. We almost forgot to end with a boom. Great one.


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