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Performance Based SEO

By Edited Jun 3, 2014 0 1


Are you paying your SEO vendor before seeing the results? Is there a fixed contract that cannot be broken? Do you feel that you are not getting enough visits/traffic even after you have hired a strong SEO partner?

Then you need to look back and reconsider your decision. An ethical SEO package should always come with a pay for performance pricing model, whereby you should pay the service provider only after they deliver results. That’s Performance Based SEO

Explaining Performance Based SEO

Basically it’s a SEO practice where a vendor agrees to deliver results first and then accept payments for the same. It’s like a post-paid service model in the domain of SEO. It’s not just the payment model that makes performance based SEO different from a standard one. Even the whole delivery model is somewhat different.

The first difference being in the way a performance based SEO company works. Unlike a traditional company, who charges its clients from day one and there is fixed revenue that is assured, the performance based SEO vendor has to prove its ability and competency in the domain of SEO. This brings in more challenge for the vendor and thus compelling the company to be absolutely sure of what it is doing and how it is doing.

The second difference is in the fact that the SEO project for a performance based SEO company is strictly governed by milestones. These milestones are pre defines by the client and are the trigger points that the client evaluates before releasing payments. So, being a client you are precisely sure of where the SEO campaign is heading and how your vendor is performing.

The SEO process workflow

SEO Process

Delivery of Performance Based SEO

Performance based SEO, is delivered based on millstones. Let’s take an example that a website is supposed to be optimized for 10 keywords and the whole project is estimated at a cost of say 500 USD. Now the whole project is split into 3 milestones.

So, in each milestone the SEO vendor is supposed to optimize the website for a certain number of keywords from the list of 10 pre agreed list. When the optimization is done, and the website ranks in top page of search engine for the 1st set of keywords, the milestone is agreed as completed by the client.

Once this happens, the client evaluates the performance of the vendor. If the vendor becomes successful to deliver up to the agreed level, then the client released the payment.

Pricing of a Performance Based SEO

This form of SEO is often referred to as pay for performance SEO. Hence the pricing is obviously tagged to the performance of the SEO service. This is achieved through keyword based pricing. In the previous example, let’s assume that of the 10 keywords for which the client’s website needs to be optimized, there is a mix of keyword competition of High, Medium and Low.

Keyword competition is a measure of how tough a keyword is, in terms of optimizing a website with that keyword. Usually, the keyword competition is determined by search engines. There are lot of things that are taken into consideration by search engines in order to determine the competition. Some of them are:

  1. Total Number of websites / search results on that particular keyword
  2. Search trend / pattern of search on that keyword
  3. The geography where the keyword has maximum search
  4. The relevance of the keyword with the website in question and lot more…

Coming to keyword based pricing; the cost of optimizing a website is tagged to the competition of the keyword. So for a high competition keyword the price will be higher and for a low completion keyword the price will be low.

In a traditional SEO delivery a client hardly enjoys the luxury of paying based on the competition of the keywords she opts for.

SEO Myths exposed



Jun 4, 2012 3:05am
There are many 'scams' in the SEO business. I am convinced that scams can be avoided by means of a performance based pricing model, with payment after the delivery of results.
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