Man on phone in front of SEO search bar.

Written by: Colin Cieloha, Skilled.co

Search engine optimization is one of the most important things that businesses need to consider when building or maintaining a website. The problem is, very few people fully understand the term, and what it is they can do to improve their own SEO.

Many businesses struggle with the fact that achieving a good SEO ranking is not an overnight thing. It can take a lot of time and effort to achieve one of the top rankings on websites like Google, and the fact stands that many businesses may never get there. However, with a lot of great content, regular blog posts, and link building, it is possible to get somewhere in less than a year, possibly even 6 to 12 months.

A study was taken in 2016, and out of the 20,000 researched URLs, it was found that on average it only takes 3.39 months on average for a page to reach their top position, a time frame that is very achievable for the majority of businesses. However, only 5.7% of new pages will get to Google’s top 10 within the time frame of a year. To get this sort of high SEO ranking will take a lot more time and effort.

The time frame will also vary greatly depending on whether the company is working on their SEO rankings themselves or if they are employing an outside company to work on it for them. Outside companies are masters of their field, and they know what works and what doesn’t. Therefore it is likely that businesses will start to see results faster if using an outside company. However, this will end up costing the company quite a bit more, so it is worth considering it is worth it. Many SEO firms will tell companies that it will take between four and six months for them to start seeing results. People are now almost speaking to search engines using sentences rather than just using one or two keywords, which makes achieving good rankings a lot more complicated. This is why sometimes it is worth investing the money and handing the job over to someone in the know.

It is hard to tell exactly how long it will take for SEO strategies to start working because it depends on a large number of factors. It depends on how long the website has been around if any SEP work has been done on it previously and what, how much content is on the site and its quality, what kind of state that the website is in and how many links the site has to name just a few. Because no website is the same, and it is rare for them to be starting at the same point, you can’t put a number on how long it will take for SEO to work.

The fact is, SEO results will grow over time, and the more a website is worked on, the more results will start to appear gradually. Sometimes these results might start off slow, which can be very frustrating, but soon these results will pick up. At some point these results may start to taper off, then it is just a matter of trying to maintain these results rather than improve them.

Many companies underestimate just how much time, and money must be put into getting a good SEO ranking. Overall it is a long-term marketing tactic, and providing the time and budget for just a few months of SEO improvement may not make any effect on the website at all. SEO is not a way to generate sales quickly, but it is definitely worth it in the long run.

Infographic on SEO