The advantages of SEO are well-known, and every marketer involved with content creation is aware of the impact proper search engine optimization practices can have. SEO has the ability to drive organic traffic, increase presence, improve reputation, and capture more leads — in short, changes that can have a significant benefit to your bottom line.
However, many marketers fail to realize that the effects of SEO won’t take place overnight. Changing your website content one day won’t lead to higher rankings the next, and new local landing pages won’t contribute to a spike in conversions in an hour or two. Due to the nature of SEO, the process moves slowly, and results may take time to see. This is why SEO requires time and patience.
The Reality of SEO
Search engine optimization is a great way to improve the performance of your website, but it’s an investment in the future. It’s not a solution for immediate results, and this can be frustrating for marketers who are new to the digital landscape. After all, most business decisions are designed with rapid responses in mind. For example, layoffs result in an instant reduction in salary costs, while closing a production plant immediately cuts overhead expenses. So why would SEO be any different?
In reality, SEO is governed by many outside factors that are not under your control. How your ranking results will change varies based on numerous factors, like:
- Keywords, use and their relevance to your topics
- Onsite optimization
- The age of your domain
- Your backlink profile
- Physical location
- The quality of your content
- Competitors and how strong their SEO tactics are
- The quality of your content
- Social media profiles and post frequency
Google search results may seem like magic, but that’s not actually the case; Google utilizes sophisticated technology, but due to the size and depth of the web and the quality controls in place, the process of ranking is a marathon, not a sprint. A new site may take time for Google’s crawlers to find, and the audience response to your updates will likely be a slow process as well.
Google takes rankings very seriously. Rapid changes to performance are often looked at with suspicion, and it takes time to verify that growth is organic and not the result of black hat tactics. Sites that use legitimate techniques will rise slowly; those that do not will rise quickly but temporarily. In time, as customers find your site, visit your pages, and use your keywords as they search, your presence will steadily build.
How Long Should I Wait?
So, results take a while, but what does that mean?
In short, somewhere around four to six months to move the needle.
This may sound like a long time, but it’s not like a light switch; you’ll begin to see changes gradually on the road to the final outcome. While you wait, don’t be afraid to make tweaks, either; if Google changes algorithms or your company branches into new spaces, your SEO campaigns should reflect this.
If you hit six months and nothing has improved, it may be time to re-evaluate your efforts. Yes, there’s a chance things will still turn around, but if your traffic level, leads, conversions, and sales are flat, there’s a good chance your changes made little to no impact.
Patience is a virtue, and this is especially true in the realm of digital marketing. Getting results can be slow, but with a well-educated approach and a little patience, you’ll see big changes in how your website performs. If you want to be sure your SEO strategy hits the mark the first time, a professional can make all the difference. Get in touch with RivalMind to learn more about SEO success.