How Do I Know My SEO Is Working?

How long does it actually take for SEO to start working?

You engaged the services of a trusted SEO company. Together you created a killer SEO strategy, and put it into place. You’ve ticked every single Whitehat box and you are confident your SEO methods are legit. So why aren’t you on the front page of Google yet? Have you done something wrong? Or is it just a matter of waiting it out? How long does SEO take to work, anyway?

Time to mature

The online world is an incredibly fast-moving one. Social media, especially, can give the impression that things happen on the turn of a dime. That’s why it can feel counter-intuitive to sit back and wait for a strategy to take effect – you want to see results now!

SEO, however, is not an overnight game. By its very nature, your ranking will take time to grow. You need time for people to start reading all those great articles, blog posts and guest articles, listening to podcasts and watching videos. You need time for your content strategy to start gaining momentum and attracting engaged readers, listeners and viewers.

As we’ve discussed before, your specific goals and objectives can vary, but the aim of most SEO is to establish you as a trusted source of information. Again, this doesn’t happen overnight and, unfortunately, it’s impossible to give an SEO results timeframe that works for everyone. Niche industries could see results really quickly, while broader industries could take longer. It’s what you do with that time that’s important.

Growth and learning

Rather than worrying about how to rise on Google search – in fact, that’s not really what you should be worried about at all – take the opportunity to study your analytics and see whether there is growth at all. Consistent, steady increases in website visits, content interactions, social media shares, backlinks and so on are much more important than appearing on the first page of Google.

If your strategy doesn’t show any growth in any of these factors over a few months, then you know it isn’t working, but if the growth is there, however slowly it may begin, your SEO is doing its job.

Maintaining momentum

The most important thing when it comes to SEO is to not lose momentum. It may take some time for your initial efforts to start having an effect, but if you don’t keep adding to your optimization efforts, it’s going to fall flat. 

Your SEO strategy shouldn’t be a one-off, but should be an ongoing plan for continuously adding to your content and growing your outreach. Make sure you have at least a six-month plan, but be ready to update it as and when things change in the world of SEO. If you have engaged the services of an SEO specialist, it’s worthwhile to keep working with them for at least one year. The first six months will primarily involve developing and building your SEO strategy and implementing it, and the next six months refining it and analyzing it. 

What are your SEO results timeframe expectations? Tell us in the comments.

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