A Brief Introduction About SEO Contract
An SEO contract states the terms on which an SEO consultant shall furnish services to a website owner. Because of the volatile nature of organic search engine results, the SEO agreement must be in writing to make certain both sides comprehend the expectations and to avoid disputes.
Who Takes the SEO Contract?
This is an agreement that sets out the legal relationship between a provider of search marketing services and its customers. It states the terms on which an SEO consultant shall furnish services to a website owner. The SEO agreement must be in writing to make certain both sides comprehend the expectations and to avoid disputes.
Purpose of the SEO Contract
A search engine optimization (SEO) consultant gives SEO services to aid webmasters and businesses to optimize their website’s performance in search engine results and increase website traffic. A written contract makes certain that both the service provider and client have a good understanding of the services offered for the agreed payment. Therefore, it is vital that the contract requires to be composed very carefully to safeguard your brand image.
Contents of the SEO Contract
The contract must specify what services the contractor would provide, for example:
- Researching keywords and key phrases to target rankings;
- Identifying websites towards building backlink profiles;
- Determining content gaps and topics towards attracting links;
- Increasing backlinks towards the website to increase site authority, reach traffic;
- Optimize internal linking as well as engagement metrics;
- Modifying front-end as well as back-end code, meta tags, content, URLs and other on-page factors to optimize the site; and
- Restructuring a website towards optimizing for crawling.
How to Draft the SEO Contract?
The contract must contain;
- Broad terms wherever essential: SEO rules change almost every week, and if you mention something particular, which becomes outdated one month later, then it would be difficult to explain to the client why you are not giving the service mentioned in the agreement. The client must clearly understand what types of optimization strategies you would adapt to on-page optimization.
- Auto-renewal contract: A web design project might end in a month; however, SEO is a continuous procedure. So, it is better to set the contract term length, for instance, three months, and make it auto-renewal towards ensuring the consistency of a project. After three months, the contract would be renewed automatically. However, if your client doesn’t agree, then you might offer him a contract with a fixed termination date.
- Minimum contract length: Most of the SEO agencies state minimum 6-12 months contract period to display positive results to the clients.
- Subcontracting: The tasks of an SEO company are many, and they might hire a third party towards assisting them. Subcontracting is not a bad plan, but it must be mentioned in the contract. If the client thinks that you are hiding something from him, he will stop trusting you.
- Advance payment: State the total amount, advance amount, payment method as well as date of payment.
- Penalty for late payment: There must be a penalty for clients who always pay late.
- Termination terms and conditions: Give customers the flexibility to terminate a contract if they are not pleased with your service.
Parties must agree as to whether the contract has a stated term or automatically renews for successive periods. The contract must also set out minimum contract periods since it could take time to see the results of an SEO contractor. It is also significant to negotiate what level of augmented visitors on the site means you obtain payment in full of your fees or if there is no increase, whether parties terminate the agreement.
Benefits and Drawbacks of the SEO Contract
A written contract makes certain that both the service provider and client have a good understanding of the services offered for the agreed payment. But, unlike any other business, SEO is different since it is a dynamic field, as well as tasks that are vital today for website optimization, might become completely irrelevant six months later. So, the contract requires to be composed very carefully to safeguard your brand image.
[ Also Read: Website Construction Service Agreement ]
What Happens in Case of Violation?
A written contract ensures that there is no misunderstanding between the client and the service provider. Besides, if any of them violates the terms and conditions as stated in the contract, a lawsuit could be filed against the guilty party(1).
An SEO agreement might be terminated by any of the parties on making a written notice towards the other, if the other party had breached any obligation and the breaching party fails to solve such violation within 30 days of receiving of the notice.
SEO is an exercise of improving as well as promoting a web site to increase the number of visitors the site receives from search engines. With contracts, the information is less regarding the legalities and more about outlining the duties, goals, and expectations of your agency and your client. Each section of your contract must be well-thought-out and drafted to make sure you do not miss any vital details.