Why Does it Take so Long to See SEO Results?

Written by Nick Stamoulis

One thing that white hat SEO practitioners will always preach is that SEO is a long term process. It’s a marathon, not a sprint. Unlike other methods of marketing, where there is a more immediate result, it takes time to see the results of an SEO campaign. Understandably this is frustrating to most clients. They are spending money and time on SEO and they want to see that ROI. The ROI will be there, but just not in the short term.

Here are 3 reasons why it takes time to see SEO results:

The amount of content on the web

Think about the massive amount of content on the web and the rate at which that continues to grow over time. Content is being uploaded every second of every day. For example, 72 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube every minute. And that is just one website out of the billions that exist! That’s a lot of content out there. While it certainly may feel like publishing a few blog posts a week is a lot (it’s definitely a lot of work!), in the grand scheme of things it’s really not much at all. You will need to be publishing a few blog posts a week for an extended amount of time in order for them to really gain traction.

The search engine indexing process

While it seems like everything on the Internet should happen instantaneously, unfortunately it doesn’t work that way. Even though it may only take seconds for a blog post to go live, it doesn’t mean that the search engines are going to find it, index it, and include it in their rankings as soon as it’s published. It can take some time for the new content to be found. This was very apparent when Google made large algorithm updates like Penguin and Panda. Site owners took action ASAP and made vast improvements to their site to make it more “Google-friendly”, but it may have taken months to see an improvement in search presence and traffic because Google wasn’t immediately recognizing that change.

The website trust factor

The domain age of a website plays a large role in conveying trust to the search engines and the search engines are known to favor content that is published on a website that has aged as opposed to on a relatively new site. This isn’t great news for new site owners but it’s one of those SEO factors that is completely out of our control. Over time as a site continually posts quality content and becomes more established, it will see that content gets indexed and shows up in search results more quickly.

While there is no surefire way to get around the “slowness” of SEO, one tactic that is worth trying is to become more active on Google+. Many people in the industry report that content gets indexed more quickly if it is shared in Google+ within an account that has many connections within its circles. Given that Google+ is a Google product, it makes sense that the search component pays attention to data within the social component.

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