SEO is undoubtedly one of the best ways to gain visibility online. If done properly, it can help a business to not only gain new customers but also to retain the ones they have. One of the most common questions surrounding SEO is how long it will take to see any result.
While it is next to impossible to figure the exact duration required for SEO to work for a website, generally results can be seen in six months or so. You may see a huge spike after the sixth month due to higher visibility online. How much time you will be able to retain the increased visibility will be up to you and how you continue using SEO.
It is important to note that speed won’t be useful without sustainability. If only speed is prioritized, then you may hit a peak and then trail off to where you were before. Several factors determine SEO results and it is important to keep up with the changes to maintain your improved visibility.
There are a few factors that determine how long an SEO strategy will take to bring visible results. They are:
What Determines How Long The SEO Strategy Will Take?
- Website Age and Authority – The impact of the age of a domain in SEO results is a divisive topic as it usually doesn’t have a significant impact on ranking. However, several studies have shown that older websites tend to have quicker benefits from SEO than those that are only a few months old. This is primarily due to the number of backlinks an older website tends to have. Over time, as more quality content is uploaded, the number of links will increase. So whether your website is an old one or a new one, having plenty of backlinks will help you to see results of SEO faster.
- Link Building – Link building takes a lot of time to do and therefore can pose a challenge if you want to see results quickly. However, this is not something that should be done by any means possible. Black hat tactics can be devastating for the growth of your website and must be avoided at all costs. By utilizing the full potential of social media for marketing and engaging with audiences, you will be able to focus on link building. Do note that paid links will not be considered when it comes to SEO as they are considered to be deceptive. By building an extensive backlink profile and high-quality links, you will be able to get closer to seeing SEO results on your website.
- Errors and Penalties – One of the first things that need to be done is to fix existing SEO errors and Google penalties (if any). Both can prevent your website from seeing any significant gains for a long time if they aren’t solved as soon as possible. Any 404 errors, 301 redirects or broken links will have to be dealt with to see any positive results from a good SEO strategy. It is important to note that sometimes this takes time as Google will have to recrawl the updated pages but once it’s done, it will help the website to see results properly.
- Website Architecture, Design and Structure – The architecture, design and structure of a website also play an important role in ranking results. All of the above have to be properly optimized to ensure the SEO strategy works as intended. Today with more people viewing websites on their mobile devices, having a responsive design helps to not only retain customers but also to determine page ranking. Once everything is in order, you should be seeing small changes to the overall visibility of your website.
- Keywords and Analysis – Unlike earlier, keywords cannot be used in abundance to get better visibility in website ranking. Stuffing the web pages with more than necessary keywords can even end up hampering its SEO. The key is to have organic and relevant keywords that help the user to consume content more comfortably. One way to do this is by analyzing the competition and discovering what keywords they use. This will take time but in the long run, it is necessary to do for the growth of the website.
- Content – Quality content is one of the most important factors that determine how a website fares when it comes to ranking. With a sound content marketing strategy, a website may see up to or more than an 8 percent increase in traffic. To do so, you will need to know more about Google’s quality rater guidelines and the latest updates to its algorithm. While this may have one of the biggest impacts on visibility, it’s also something that takes a lot of time to develop.
As long as you execute a sound SEO strategy properly, you should be seeing improved traffic in a matter of months. The exact duration will be impossible to predict. However, an improvement is almost always guaranteed. SEO is not something that should be done for the short term as it needs to be updated and worked on from time to time. If your website falters in one aspect, the results will take more time to manifest. The average cost of hiring an SEO expert can be anywhere between 60 and 150 pounds per hour. While this may seem a lot, it will help you gain a lot more money over time. Think of SEO as an investment but never spend more than what you can handle.
How Long SEO Takes vs Competition
The ultimate goal of executing a sound SEO strategy is to preferably get a higher or better ranking than your competitors. If you are selling a niche product or service, then the greater chance you have of appearing high in rankings. This is because of less competition. However, when a business exists in a highly competitive market, it becomes a little more difficult to gain more visibility. Demand and supply all play a pivotal part in determining the online visibility and growth of a business.
As the website gains in the ranking, it will take longer and longer to reach the next higher level. This is because of other websites also employing sound SEO strategies to appear higher in search results. Hence, to truly maximize the potential of SEO, a proper analysis of the competition must be done. This will help to not only understand what works for them but also how to reach their level and potentially beat them. SEO is a marathon and not a sprint, so patience and consistency are very important for success.
It’s not possible to gauge the exact time it will take for a website to see the results of good SEO. If everything is done properly, then you can expect to see changes in four to six months but the journey only begins from that point. Once improvement is seen, it is vital to consistently maintain good SEO and keep track of changes made to the search algorithm and the ranking system.
If the basics are sound, it will be easier to grow your businesses from there on out but effort and time will still be required on your part. Sometimes, an educated guess can potentially slingshot your website into the stratosphere but without consistent tweaking and high-quality content, it will drop sooner or later. You might consider hiring an expert SEO company like Nettonic.co.uk to take care of your website’s SEO. This will save you valuable time and money and let you focus on other important things.