How Long Does It Take to Improve My Google Search Ranking?

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Walk West

There are a lot of questions about search engine optimization rankings and SEO techniques. The most common one that we often receive is: “What is the turnaround time to improve my Google search ranking?” We also hear from many people who wonder why they aren’t seeing instant SEO results–the next day.

Why am I not seeing results? It’s been a month.

SEO is more of an art than a science, making it hard to give a definite answer in terms of days, weeks, or months. In fact, the answer is longer than most people think or expect. You are not going to gain a few great links to your site and then magically see your page skyrocket to the top of Google. That’s not how SEO works.  

Google has made many algorithm updates and tweaks over the years to make it almost impossible to get around the system. Any SEO agencies that tell you otherwise and promise quick results are not being honest. However, we can tell you one thing with absolute certainty—it’s not going to take only a week or a month to see real progress.

This is especially true with new sites or pages. Last year, Ahrefs conducted a data-based study using 2 million pages chosen at random. The study found that only 5.7 percent of pages ranked #1 for even just one keyword during their first year. In addition, it stated that the average “age” for #1 ranking pages for a keyword was approximately three years. If you pause and think about everything we know about Google’s search engine—both from what Google has shared and what we’ve seen with our own eyes—consistency is very important. As a result, that’s hard to fully demonstrate in a short period of time.

Why won’t I see instant results?

While there are best practices and techniques that can help improve your SEO, high SEO ranking really comes down to consistently creating great content that is relevant to your audience. Remember, this takes time and dedication.

But most importantly, Google rankings are based on traffic and that takes time to build. First, you have to make the changes to your site in order to help your target audience find you. As a result, your traffic will begin to grow. Only once this occurs will you then start to see your ranking rise.

Are you sure you can’t tell me how long?

You aren’t the only one. Everyone really wants a number to hang onto. We do understand wanting a point in the sand to tell if you are on the right path or not.

If you push us for an answer, our standard answer is four to six months. This is in line with most other experts’ experience as well as Google, who says you will likely see results in 4 to 12 months. It will probably—almost assuredly—be longer if you aren’t using SEO best practices on your page.

Instead of being discouraged about the duration it takes to produce results, use that as motivation to get started today. We can say two things about SEO results with absolute certainty: you will never see results if you don’t take the first step; and the sooner you get started, the sooner your Google search ranking should start to rise.

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