One of our most commonly heard questions relating to SEO goes something along the lines of ‘how quickly can I hit Google’s first page for my important terms?’
Whilst we would love nothing more than to provide a simple answer, the world of SEO is rarely that straightforward and answering this question is always more complicated than we would like it to be.
A Changing Landscape
As people continue to become more proficient at using the internet, search engine optimisation is becoming increasingly driven by natural language search, i.e. people entering searches that are based on normal questions.
Why Is This Happening?
This change in the way people conduct their internet searches has taken place because of the movement towards tools such as Siri and Google Now to voice their searches, rather than manually typing them into a search engine.
This in turn has led to the addition of more detail to their typed searches and as a result, they are generating more accurate results at the first time of asking.
The good news is that by tapping into this shift of searching emphasis, the opportunity to increase conversion rates is excellent due to the fact that the results being generated are becoming increasingly relevant.
Don’t Focus Too Hard on Rankings
Achieving excellent rankings is an output that many SEO firms can easily sell because they look good! However, it is an increase in relevant visitors which is often the most important SEO factor.
Without an increasing number of visitors, you are highly unlikely to generate leads or sales–the outcome you need and this is why you should place your trust in SEO firms with a focus on delivering outcomes, rather than outputs.
But How Long Does It Take For SEO To Start Working?
We could tell you that it takes a week but that wouldn’t be true. We could tell you that it takes a month and that wouldn’t be true either. The truth is that it depends on a variety of factors and there is no set timescale to hit your SEO goals.
Obviously, we will do all that we can to ensure that results start to take a positive turn at the earliest possible stage but there is no ‘one size fits all’ strategy to effective SEO.
Some of the many factors which we must take into account, include how long your website has been live, how much (good) SEO work has been completed previously, what shape the website is in, is the content fresh and interesting, does it have a good link profile to name just a few.
Please Note – For more information relating to some of the many factors relating to SEO please see the Search Engine Land infographic* below.
A Helpful Guideline
We understand that no-one wants to hear ‘how long is a piece of string?’ when asking about SEO timescales though and as such, our experience tells us that there is every chance it will take between 4 to 6 months to start seeing results.
What is important to note though is that when done correctly, SEO results grow over time. This means that no matter how good the results may be after 6 months, there is every chance that your website will be generating significantly better results after another 6 months.
Don’t Stop Too Soon
SEO should always be viewed as an investment rather than an expenditure, however, many companies do not come in with that mindset.
We have experience with companies who start the right way but look for the exit door at 2 or 3 months because they ‘just weren’t getting the results we needed to justify the cost.’
This tells us that, unfortunately, they entered into the SEO campaign with unrealistic expectations and as a general rule, if you are not in a position where you can budget for 6 to 12 months of SEO, you may be better exploring other opportunities with your marketing budget.
This is not to say that there is no chance of achieving fast results for you and one thing that we can guarantee is that our entire service is geared towards achieving the best possible results at the earliest possible stage.
An Accurate View
To ensure that you enter an SEO agreement with the most accurate view, we recommend looking at SEO as an effective long term marketing tactic, and not as a method to generate quick sales.
However, if you make the proper investment, and plan on being in it for the long haul, SEO is a marketing tactic with the potential for one of the best ROIs out there.
*Infographic courtesy of Search Engine Land
If you would like any more information, please contact the Footprint team on Tel. No. 01883 372488 and we will be happy to answer any of your questions.