Understanding The Costs Of Running SEO Software
When used properly, SEO automated tools can make you a lot of money by allowing you to rank your own money sites as well as the sites of others (if you are a service provider). However aside from initial purchasing costs and/or monthly subscriptions, there are other factors to consider when running software that need to be taken into account. These are as listed below with recommendations:
Cost #1: Captcha Solving
One of the biggest costs in running SEO software is the cost of captcha solvers. If you are not familiar with captchas, they basically are the little squiggly words that you have to enter before registering or posting something. Many of the premier SEO tools on the market registers and posts on thousands of sites, and often these sites require a captcha to be solved that the software itself cannot do. Unless you want to sit there and solve 1,000s of captchas by hand, you are going to need a captcha solver to run these tools.
Thus many SEO tools integrate a captcha solver into the program where you can add your account from these captcha solving services so that you don't have to enter these in manually. If you run a lot of campaigns, you can actually blow through quite a good amount of money in captchas every month. Tools like SEnuke, Article Marketing Robot, and Bookmarking Demon for example all burn through captchas when used.
Captchas are a fairly big chunk of your operating costs if you run SEO campaigns on any sort of medium to large scale. For example, every time I run a brand new SEO campaign for one of my sites, I usually rack up about $1 in captcha solving costs. So if you have a ton of sites, this is a cost that you are going to have to factor in.
Usually captcha solving services sell their service by the 1,000. So for example you would pay say $2/1,000 captchas solved depending on which service used. My favorite captcha solving service is deathbycaptcha.com, and I believe it is $1.39/1,000 captchas solved.
Cost #2: Private Proxies
If you do any sort of posting through software on a mass level you are at some point going to want to invest in private proxies. Proxies if you are not familiar with them allow you to hide your IP address. This is especially useful when you use automated SEO tools as often sites will ban IPs that post too frequently or create a ton of spam. Thus by having a bunch of private proxies, you are able hide behind multiple IPs that will allow you to continually successfully post on these websites as they will think your submissions are coming from a wide variety of places.
Private proxies can range in price from anywhere from $1.50-3.00 each depending on the quality of the proxy and the quantity that you purchase. If you are only doing SEO work on your own sites, you probably will be fine with 10-20 proxies. If you have a ton of sites or are an SEO service provider (like myself), you will probably need a lot more.
I personally use several proxy providers. My two favorite at the moment are Packet Flip and Squid Proxies.
Cost #3: VPS Set-Up
If you are running a ton of SEO tools or a resource intensive piece of software (like Scrapebox), you should probably consider getting a Virtual Private Server or VPS. If you are not familiar with these, think of them as computers that you remotely access. These set-ups usually have much faster internet connections and higher bandwidth allotments than say your local internet service provider, and they are a must have for those that do a lot of heavy SEO work. A VPS allows you to really maximize the power of SEO tools by allowing you to really, for lack of a better word, "abuse" the set-up. Often the internet connection or set-up at your personal residence will not be able to handle the heavy duty lifting requirements of some SEO software, thus a VPS would be recommended.
A good VPS set-up can run anywhere from $50-100 per month, and it is well worth it if you have a lot of projects to run through. I personally like FDCservers.net, but there are a ton of great VPS providers out there.
So again these are the main costs that are associated with running SEO tools that need to be considered on top of the purchase costs and/or monthly subscriptions. This shouldn't deter you from using SEO tools, as again when used properly they can make you a ton of money. However just keep in mind that if you are just starting out using SEO tools that these are the inherent costs that are necessary to running the tools properly. So plan wisely and take these into account before setting up your SEO toolbox.