For some reason, when I get calls from companies with small SEO projects, I simply draw a blank when trying to think, who locally I should refer them to.
Of course several independant consultants come to mind, but the really good ones are always too busy. I don’t want to refer these projects into a situation where they can’t be helped. There are also a number of local agencies that “also do” SEO, but these projects are likely too small. Or the agencies aren’t very good at SEO.
I avoid at all costs just saying, “We’re not taking on projects, or your budget is too small, good luck and goodbye.” I don’t mind referring them on to someone that can help. However, it must be a give and take situation and it must be respectful.