The market of search engine optimization is quite a strange thing. In fact, it has not yet calmed down. Companies offer completely different conditions of work, the price for the services varies greatly, and every company has its own process of service provision. It is difficult for an inexperienced customer to orientate in such a situation immediately. In this article, I will try to help you in this matter telling you about some details of SEO contracts.
Surely, it is impossible to describe all the difficulties and important points of such contracts in one single article. And a lot depends on the nature of a contract, its payment ways. Hence, we are going to speak about an average Search Engine Optimization Company that takes monthly fees for its work.
Not all companies will return your funds in the case of a failure, yet they have to provide at least some guarantees. For example, it may be stipulated in a contract that a search engine optimization service is considered to be provided if 60% (and more) requests stated in the contract came out to the top of certain search engines. If by the date of the service delivery stated in the contract the number of requests is less than 60%, it means that the SEO Company did not cope with the work.
It must be stated in the contract what will happen in such a case. For instance, a studio may not take the subscription fee for the next several months till it gets those 75% notorious queries to the top. After this, the payment is resumed. It’s obvious that this variant is not the most ideal as your budget will still be spent. But if there is not even such a minimal guarantee, the contract begins to raise questions.
It is clear that many SEOs don’t love talks about timing. It’s understood that they are often affected by the search engines that change algorithms. But what will the entrepreneur-customer get from this? That’s right, he is not significantly worried by such details. That is why it is necessary to pay close attention to the work deadlines in such contracts. When does the customer accept the work? This must be a clear date. And if the Optimizer fails to this date, you need to pass straight to the guarantees described above. The change of the Google algorithm is not a problem of the customer – it is the problem and headache of the optimizer.
3) Change of Pages by Agreement
Everything concerning the changes of the site’s text parts must be coordinated by both sides, i.e. if the customer substantially changes the texts, they must be approved by the optimizer. And vice versa. It may seem strange. Why should I approve texts on my own website with the SEO Company?! However, the text information is one of those factors, which affect the search results. The wrong texts can lower rankings and this will entail a failure from the performer’s side. The SEO Company, in its turn, must provide the customer with texts so that there are no semantic problems. In all cases, you know your product better than them.
4) No Hidden Fees
The customer’s costs must all be clearly described in the contract with SEO. i.e. a monthly budget for the promotion period is to be described. The cost for the work and the payments order must be specified there. This is, in fact, all that the customer has to pay. It is important that the contract does not allow hidden fees – for instance, reports, web analytics, and etc. You should have an image what you are paying for and how much. You should approach this with an utmost care.
5) List of Queries
The list of queries, of course, is to be as an annex to the contract. And the customer should pay attention to these queries. First, it must contain those queries that really fit your business – those that can help to achieve your goals. Sometimes, SEOs add to the list absolutely useless, amicably disputable, but easy-to-output queries only in order to implement the “60% rule” (see the guarantee in 1st point). Watch this. Do not focus only on the high-frequency queries (for example, “window”). Low-quality queries often sell even better (for example, “iPhone 7buy cheap in Dubai by installments from the bank”). It is important that the list is approved once and does not undergo changes during the period of promotion.
6) Mandatory Queries
And let’s go back to our guarantees about the 60% of queries brought to the top. It is obvious that not all queries are of equal value for the customer. There are those closer to his proposals and those not so promising in terms of sales or even traffic. It is important that he (the customer) is able to determine and mark the queries, which must be brought to the top. Even if the optimizer brings the guaranteed queries but there won’t be any mandatory queries, the service must not be considered delivered and the point 1 “Guarantees” comes into play.
I listed the most important for customers and, in my opinion, slippery moments of contracts for the provision of search engine optimization services. And what would you advise to pay attention to?