Are You Expecting the Impossible from Your SEO Program?

Written by Nick Stamoulis

One of our full-service SEO clients has experienced tremendous SEO success this year, with a 210.27% growth in organic traffic. I wish we could deliver such incredible reports to all of our clients because I know as a site owner if I saw that kind of YoY organic growth I’d be jumping for joy. But I have to preface that number with a huge caveat—that kind of organic growth is the exception, not the rule. You can’t expect or demand that kind of organic growth from your own SEO program because each website and each industry presents its own unique challenges. Here are 3 ways you know you are expecting the impossible from your SEO program:

1. You are comparing yourself to the biggest players in your industry as opposed to you real competition.

We used to work with a B2B software client that had some products that competed with Oracle, one of the biggest B2B software companies around. They were always comparing their organic presence to Oracle even though their online marketing budget was probably 1/100th of what Oracle spends, they had a much smaller marketing department, and they had only just begun a content marketing campaign (Oracle probably owns dozens of thought leadership based sites and communities)…and they wanted to know why their organic numbers weren’t at the same level as Oracle’s. While this company may offer the same products as Oracle, Oracle is in a totally different league! Comparing your SEO program to the industry leader (when you aren’t on equal footing with them) could lead to unreasonable expectations of success.

2. You aren’t willing to give your SEO program enough time to take effect.

The client I mentioned above really saw a surge starting in organic growth after about 4 months of link building. It’s so important to remember that what you do today might not really have an impact for several months and if you are expecting overnight success you are in for a surprise. We worked with another B2B company that was unhappy with their results after 6 months of link building and content marketing so they decided to part ways…and of course that last SEO reports we ran for them showed double-digit organic growth month-over-month! Because they worked in such a competitive niche it took that much time to start carving out a spot for their own website. I would say that most websites can expect to see some kind of organic growth within 6-9 months (provided they are consistently building/earning quality links, creating great content, and staying involved in social media), but for some sites it just takes a little bit longer. Time is something you can’t rush so buckle up for the long haul!

3. You want maximum results for minimum efforts.

Like it or not, SEO requires a lot of work, a ton of time, and a serious commitment if you want to succeed. You can’t build a link here and there as you have time and then not do anything to grow your online brand for 6 weeks and expect real results. When it comes to SEO, you get out what you put in. If you are writing fresh content every day and properly promoting it you’ll typically see noticeable results a lot faster than someone who just writes one blog post each month. True SEO success cannot be faked and the last thing you want to do is rush through the process so quickly that your actions actually come back to haunt you in the end!

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