When you spend countless hours optimizing and improving your site, it’s easy to feel impatient. When will you start seeing SEO results? The keyword research, writing the alt tags, composing the meta descriptions, cleaning up links, and revamping content…it all takes time. But you want SEO results, and you want them NOW, right?! Well, we’re here to set the record straight. Here are important insights to help keep your expectations for immediate SEO results in check!
Not to get too metaphorical (or cheesy) but think of search engine optimization like planting a garden. When you plant a seed, do you immediately expect a bunch of blooming pink hydrangeas to sprout out of the ground the next day? Of course not!
Or to offer another example, when you decide to whip yourself into shape and shed a few pounds, do you expect that one trip to the gym will yield six-pack abs? We wish, but of course, the answer’s still nope.
Like killer abs and pretty flowers, good things in life take time. You need to do the work, offer optimal conditions, weed, water, and do crunches (to mix metaphors). Good stuff takes a while and SEO results are no exception. Optimizing your site is an ongoing concerted effort but if you do it well, you’ll get results!
Getting antsy for some SEO results? Let’s check your process and expectations.
First: Identify the Current State of Your SEO Efforts
Ready for a pop SEO quiz? Mark each that apply:
- Do you conduct keyword research for every single post?
- Do you always research a user-friendly, searchable focus keyword relevant to your content?
- Do you consistently produce specific, authoritative, well-written, quality content?
- Is your website free of old, dead-weight content and have you done content clean-up lately?
- Do use a unique and descriptive alt tag for every single image?
- Do take the time to write unique meta descriptions for every single post?
- Do you check your blogs site speed regularly?
- Do you maintain a clean back-end of your site?
- Do you stay on top of repairing broken links and broken images?
- Have you ever conducted a site audit to check the overall health of your blog?
How did you score? Even the top bloggers probably won’t get 100% but if you want to follow all the important SEO tactics, these items should be high, regular priority.
Now, there’s no shame in your game if you missed a few items on this list. Simply continue to educate yourself on best practices and DIY SEO tactics to set yourself up for success and you WILL see those SEO results when the time is right. Do not pass go. Do not collect $200. Roll up your sleeves and get to work.
On the other hand, if you think you scored a perfect A+, you’re officially on the right track, nice work! (Virtual first bump!) Implementing SEO into your daily routine is no easy task and should absolutely be celebrated. (Yay! Virtual party!)
Okay, enough virtual roughhousing for now. Back to business. So, you’re doing everything you should be and now you’re thinking, “Shut up and tell me when I’m going to see some SEO results and show up on the first page of Google! Is it two-months, a year, 5 years, 100 years?! Will I ever live to see my page ranked on Google?! I NEED ANSWERS!!!”
Deep breaths. Here’s the scoop, you want an exact number? I’ll give it to you (kind of).
Google’s very own Maile Ohye said: “In most cases, SEO experts need four months to a year to help your business first implement improvements and then see the potential benefit.” Again, that was four months to a year to see any SEO results. Side note: check out Maile’s whole video because it’s full of fantastic info.
Whether you decide work with a specialized company like Posts By Ghost (cough, cough, which we highly recommend) or you decide to keep on that solo grind, the answer is the same. Good SEO takes time–at least months–before you see results.
In the words of the iconic Tom Petty, the waiting is the hardest part. We get it, but optimization is necessary and well worth the effort. Here are four important ideas to keep in mind while you’re waiting on your SEO results.
Keep These Four Items in Mind When Waiting for SEO Results
If you’re feeling like SEO is a waste of time then ask yourself: was the Declaration of Independent a waste of time? Was the first man on the moon a waste of time? (We know, we’re a little dramatic.) Forbes writer Michelle Gray said it best: “Websites without SEO are like brick-and-mortar businesses without doors.”
Good SEO (or the lack of) will make or break your blog or business. So keep at it and remember:
1. Your SEO Potential is Dependent on You
SEO is a powerful tool, but SEO results will only be as good as your blog, small business, company, or idea.
Google’s Maile Ohye said, “One’s SEO potential is only as high as the quality of his/her business or website.” Meaning, SEO isn’t a magic cure-all. It won’t turn a poorly designed blog viral or your failing business into a success. Good SEO practices on a post don’t automatically catapult you to the number one spot in Google’s search result rankings. YOUR work must be good too.
“Google only loves you when everyone else loves you first,” advises entrepreneur Wendy Piersall. You cannot rely on search engine optimization as the sole driving factor to improve your overall business. Perfecting your SEO skills AND improving your business are both equally important.
Main Street ROI reported, “Google’s algorithm takes into account many factors, but one of the most important signals is the number of websites that reference, or link to the information.” Again, many of these are easily accumulated as your business thrives in your industry. Main Street ROI continues on to explain that every single link Google takes into account is like a vote for your blog or website. The more votes, the higher you’ll likely rank in search engines like Google.
So, what does all of this mean? Patience is key, young grasshopper! Grab a comfy chair, a tall glass of hot chocolate, and cozy up with a book near the fireplace (or the fireplace app on your iPad) because just as growing a business takes time, so do quality SEO results.
Put as much energy into establishing your company and growing your brand as you do into everyday SEO practices and before you know it, your SEO results will likely rise to the same level!
2. If You’re the New Kid, Be Patient
NKOTB might qualify as the coolest boy band of the 90s, but being the new kid on the block (or blog) in the web world isn’t quite as groovy. When your website is new, it’s going to take longer to see SEO results. As a new brand on the market, you’re competing with well-established names and influencers who’ve been doing this “blogging thing” longer than you have.
There are several factors search engines consider when ranking your site and ideally, the longer you’re around, the better these will look to Google. A few of these on-site ranking factors include:
- Number of Pages Within the Site
- Freshness/Uniqueness of Content Across the Entire Site
- Use of Media (vidoes, picture, graphics, etc.)
- Average Time Users Spend on Site
And (drumroll please…) DOMAIN AUTHORITY!
Domain authority is a special type of score (ranked on a scale of 1 to 100) originally developed by the savvy thinkers over at Moz. The main idea is this score will likely give you a prediction of where your website currently stands among the competition and where you’re likely to rank in Google’s search results. The more established your site, the more domain authority you carry and the better your search engine rankings will likely be.
Remember, you don’t walk in your first day on the job expecting the title of CEO, a high rise office, and a company car. You need to put in the work first to earn those luxuries and SEO results are no different.
If you’re just launching a new food, business, or travel blog, remember patience. Starting from scratch means it WILL take you longer to see any SEO results or benefits. Keep your perspective and wait it out, but never quit. Work your butt off to connect with your blog audience and it will happen. As your company grows, so will your online presence and your SEO results!
3. SEO is NOT One and Done
There’s no one-time fix with SEO. You can’t check SEO off your to-do list, wash your hands and say, “that’s that.” Generating quality SEO results is an on-going practice that takes hard work and consistent dedication.
In fact, studies conducted by Forbes found that for SEO efforts to qualify as successful, the strategy had to be continuous. “Because the internet is fluid, not static, constant changes are a given.” As the internet moves forward, you must adjust your SEO efforts too.
Mastering your optimization for a week straight then hitting the brakes is like learning all the words to just one Mama Mia! song and expecting to perform the entire musical perfectly. Hello! there are at least 18 other songs on that soundtrack! Similarly, there’s A LOT more you need to learn and implement to earn the SEO results you want.
Google is constantly evolving. In fact, Google typically goes through about 500 to 600 different algorithm changes every single year. With all the changes taking place, optimization is never one and done. Quality SEO results take time and consistent effort. As Google implements changes, you must adapt accordingly.
If you want your blog to be easily accessible and visible to web users, you must keep adapting and moving forward to shine through all the clutter. Continuous progress and incremental improvements are best for SEO. Even if you’ve been blogging a while, there are always areas to improve. Stay consistent with your site optimization efforts to guarantee SEO results in a timely manner!
4. The Competition is Fierce so Keep Your Expectations in Check
We hate to be discouraging. If you have a blog and a dream, you can make it out there, but it’s tough, especially as the market becomes more and more saturated.
There are literally almost 2 billion websites out there including millions of bloggers with millions of blogs and millions of different ideas (some good, some not so good). Your business may be AMAZING (and we’re 100% sure it is) but the competition is intense, and you need to keep your head in the game.
This is final rose time, someone’s getting chopped, Tyra’s holding only one model’s photo in her hands, and Heidi’s ready to say auf wiedersehen to one designer. Manage your expectations if you’re just starting out with blogging and especially with SEO. You need to understand that the awesome, career changing SEO results everyone’s blabbing about do exist but (not to sound like a broken record) TAKE TIME.
So yes, the competition is tough, but your best asset is you. There’s no one out there like you and no one with your same perspective, ideas, and insights. Use your uniqueness to your advantage!
Discover your special, one-of-a-kind niche. Get to know your audience and share what they want and need to know. Be specific. Be different. Be real. Continue to create killer content and implement good optimization tactics and you’ll steadily grow your business.
Get a New Perspective on SEO
As an online professional, recognize SEO results come in many different forms. A sign your SEO efforts are working may go beyond search rankings alone. It’s not just about the first page of Google. Consider other successes, like the growth you’ve accumulated in your new business with increased website traffic, the large number of social media followers you’ve amassed, or the increased views on your YouTube cooking videos.
Instead of asking, “When will I be number one in Google?” Josh Steimle of Forbes says to flip it and ask yourself, “How long will it take for SEO to start generating leads and sales?” This fresh view on SEO results will help you see the benefits of driving traffic to your business.
If you’re overwhelmed by SEO, no worries! We’re here to help! An SEO audit is a great first step toward better SEO results. Your audit will help you drill down and dissect every aspect of your blog and website. Discover what’s working, assess the health, and get a road map to navigate on your journey. An audit tells you where you stand in internet popularity and what areas of your blog need improvement.
We’ll pinpoint any issues needing immediate attention and provide you with clear, easy-to-follow recommendations you can use to reach the SEO results you want. Whether you’re running a small business, you’re the CEO of a corporation, or a you’re just a quirky blogger with wild ideas, we want to help you succeed!
You CAN have the SEO results you want, and we’ll help you get there! Schedule your personalized SEO audit with us today and we’ll walk you through the rest.
Is it time to make real changes to the content on your blog? Are you in need of major help to increase website traffic? Do you have a thousand random questions about everything you read? No worries, we can’t wait to help you! Contact Posts by Ghost™ or leave a comment below!