How Long Does SEO Take to Work?

August 27, 2023
By Fahad Zahid

If you're running a business & planning to do SEO marketing, you must be wondering how long it actually takes to see results from SEO.

As an marketing agency, Social Gravity hears this question all the time from our clients & prospects.

Generally speaking, you can see initial rankings within 6-8 months, while you'll need to wait at least a year to see prominent improvement in your website's traffic. However, this is an estimation and there's a lot of variables that dictate how long it takes to see results from SEO.

In the blog post, We'll discuss what SEO is, why it's important for your business, and the various factors that influence how quickly you can see results from your SEO efforts.

What is SEO?

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) involves optimising your website’s content and structure to make it more relevant and user-friendly for search engines AND visitors.

SEO helps increase the traffic to your website through organic search engines such as Google & Bing and the results are based on several factors:

  • Relevance: How well your web page matches the query or intent of the searcher
  • Quality: How well your web page provides value and information to the searcher
  • Authority: How well your web page demonstrates trustworthiness and expertise in your industry or niche
  • User experience: How well your web page performs and satisfies the searcher’s needs and expectations

Why is SEO Important for Your Business?

SEO is a powerful marketing strategy that helps your business establish a strong online presence, build trust and credibility with your customers, and generate more leads/sales for your business.

  • Increase Your Online Presence: Ranking higher on search engine results pages (SERPs) for relevant keywords helps attract your target audience to your website.
  • Build Trust and Credibility: Showcasing your industry expertise through high-quality content can cultivate trust with your potential customers, making you the preferred choice over your competitors.
  • Generate More Leads and Sales: By aligning your website's content with the search intent of potential customers, you can increase the conversion rate and revenue from your website.

According to a BrightEdge study, organic search drives 53% of all website traffic, highlighting the need for a strong SEO strategy.

Aspects of SEO You Need To Optimise For

There are four main aspects of SEO you should try to optimise your website for:

  • Technical SEO: This focuses on improving the technical aspects of your site, such as website speed, mobile-friendliness, crawlability, indexability, and security. Technical SEO can significantly enhance your site’s performance and user experience.
  • On-page SEO: This involves optimising elements like meta title tags, meta descriptions, content, images, and internal links on your website. On-page SEO helps boost the relevance and quality of your site for your target audience.
  • Off-page SEO: This type of SEO looks at external factors, including backlinks, social media engagement, and online reviews. These elements can enhance your site’s reputation and authority in your industry.
  • Local SEO: This is the process of optimising your site for local search queries to try ranking your Google Business profile within Google Maps section, which can increase your visibility among potential customers in your local area.

For a successful SEO strategy, it's crucial to consistently and strategically apply all four aspects of SEO. Monitoring and measuring your SEO performance using tools like Google Analytics, Google Search Console, Ahrefs, or SEMrush can provide insights into your site's ranking, traffic, conversions, and other critical metrics.

How Long Does SEO Take to Work?

SEO is a long-term investment that usually shows results over time. Generally speaking, you can expect to see initial results within 6 to 8 months, though this timeframe can vary depending on several factors such as:

New vs. Old Website

Typically, older websites have more authority and, hence, can show results faster than newer websites that need more effort to establish their online presence.

The Competition

If you're operating in a competitive industry or targeting highly competitive keywords, it will take much longer for your SEO efforts to bear fruit. For some keywords, they're so difficult that it can even take 2+ years of consistent SEO efforts to rank the keyword in top 3 results.

Your Resources

The more resources you can invest in SEO, like hiring more content writers or investing in SEO tools, the quicker you'll see results.

Your Strategy

A well-planned strategy, considering factors like target keywords and their competition, can make your SEO efforts more effective and potentially speed up the results. This is where you should look for an SEO agency to execute a well-planned strategy, as they've been doing it for years and know what works best.

The Dynamic Elements of SEO

The dynamic nature of SEO further complicates the question of how long it takes to work. Three significant dynamic factors include:

  • Algorithm Updates: Search engines regularly update their algorithms to improve the user experience. These updates can have a positive or negative impact on your site's ranking.
  • User Behaviour: The way users interact with your site and content influences factors like click-through rate, bounce rate, and dwell time. These factors play a role in determining your site's relevance and user satisfaction, thus affecting your ranking.
  • Seasonality: Trends and seasonal changes can affect the demand for certain topics or keywords, leading to fluctuations in your site's traffic and conversions.

Given the nature of these factors, staying updated with the latest SEO trends and regularly analysing your site's data are necessary to keep your SEO strategy on point.

Measuring and Refining Your SEO Performance

Evaluating and enhancing your SEO performance is an ongoing task that involves:

  • Setting up tracking tools: Install tools like Google Analytics, Google Search Console, Ahrefs, or SEMrush on your site. These tools can provide valuable data about your SEO performance & where to focus on.
  • Monitoring and analysing data: Regularly review the data from your tracking tools, looking for trends, patterns, and opportunities.
  • Implementing and testing changes: Based on the data and insights you gather, make necessary changes to your SEO strategies.

Social Gravity's SEO Timeline: What to Expect

With Social Gravity, here's a general SEO timeline you can expect:

  • Month 1: Competitor Research, Keyword Research & Mapping: We conduct a detailed keyword research, competitive analysis, and technical SEO audits on your website to identify all keywords that we need to rank and identify technical SEO issues on your website that require immediate attention.
  • Month 2: Technical SEO & Website Speed Optimisation: We implement changes identified in the SEO audit to make your website as search-friendly as possible.
  • Month 3: Content Creation: We begin creating SEO-optimised content in the form of landing pages & blog posts.
  • Month 4: Content Creation & Link Building: We continue creating content and start building high-quality backlinks to build your website's authority.
  • Month 5 and Beyond: Review, Refine, Repeat: We review the results, refine our strategies, and continue improving your SEO. Regular content creation & link building is a cricual part in long term SEO success of your website.

Please note, SEO is not a one-time task but an ongoing process. The timeframe above is a rough estimate, and actual results can vary. Also, what we cover in an SEO plan depends on the SEO package you choose.

Get Started With SEO Marketing with Social Gravity

Ready to enhance your online presence and drive more sales for your business? Considering hiring a specialised SEO agency like Social Gravity. With our dedicated SEO team and innovative SEO strategies, we can help you get SEO results much faster & at a cost much lower than doing SEO yourself.

Get started by contacting us here.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why Can't I See Immediate Results With SEO?

SEO involves several tweaks and changes that search engines need time to recognise and evaluate. Also, with the sheer volume of websites out there, it takes time for search engines to crawl and index each one. Hence, seeing immediate results with SEO is unlikely.

Can I Do SEO Myself?

While you can certainly learn the basics of SEO, it is a complex, ever-changing field that requires technical expertise and a considerable time investment. Hiring an expert like Social Gravity can free up your time and ensure the best results.

How Much Should I Spend on SEO?

The amount you should spend on SEO depends on your business size, industry, and competition. At Social Gravity, we offer customised packages that cater to a range of budgets, ensuring that every business can benefit from our expertise.

What If My Rankings Drop?

SEO is a dynamic field, and fluctuations in rankings are quite common. If your rankings drop, it's crucial not to panic but to analyse the potential causes and address them.

How Can I Measure SEO Success?

You can measure SEO success through various metrics, such as organic traffic, keyword rankings, and conversion rates. Tools like Google Analytics and Google Search Console can provide valuable insights into your SEO performance.

Does Every Business Need SEO?

In today's digital age, every business can benefit from SEO. No matter your industry or business size, SEO can enhance your online visibility, attract quality traffic, and increase your conversion rates.

Contact Social Gravity!

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Author Fahad Zahid
Co-Founder @ Social Gravity

As a passionate Digital Marketer & YouTuber, Fahad Zahid, co-founder of Social Gravity, is known for helping home service & construction companies shine on the web with Paid Advertisement & SEO.