You Can’t Predict or Forecast SEO Results

Written by Nick Stamoulis

When you implement an SEO program, it’s only natural that you want to find a way to predict results. In fact, people ask me this very thing all the time. They wonder if they can not only forecast their SEO results, but also their website visitor growth and the ROI of their overall SEO program. While this is certainly desirable, it isn’t possible.

The answer is NO! No matter how smooth talking a sales person at an SEO firm makes it sound (no doubt to sell their SEO service), there is no way to predict results. If a firm is trying to convince you otherwise, it’s important not to take their claims seriously. In fact, it should make you question their tactics. 

Why can’t you predict or control SEO results? Here’s an overview of why you should never trust people who tell you it’s possible:

There Are Factors You Can’t Control

The main reason why you can’t predict results is that there are so many factors that you can’t control. When it comes to getting organic results, your only choice is to do all the right things and follow a white-hat strategy. After that, you just need to let things take their own course. Factors such as Google algorithm changes, industry and competition changes, and how quickly the SEO program takes root will all be a factor in determining your results.

We Know Our Strategies Do Work

However, when an SEO firm is confident in their skills, you should pay attention! While we can’t predict results, we do know what works and what doesn’t. Typically, most of our B2B full service SEO clients see a good long term ROI and improvement in their organic traffic within a 9 to 12 month range.  This is providing an established website has great user focused content is properly optimized and has a long term marketing effort in place.  Marketing efforts could include:  link building, content creation/marketing, blogging, social media, etc. We have a strategy that works, but we simply don’t know when it will work!

Focus on Things You Can Control

You can control certain things about your SEO program that will lead to greater results in the future. For instance, you’ll want to follow white-hat tactics for your SEO and avoid anyone who will use black hat SEO strategies, which can cause a lot more harm than good. You should also make your efforts consistent. SEO is one of those things that need to be done consistently, even if you aren’t seeing the results you want as quickly as you want. Over time, consistently following a white-hat SEO plan will yield the results you want, it’s just impossible to predict how long it will take! If someone tells you that they’re able to forecast your results, question their motives. Chances are pretty good that they’re just giving you a sales pitch to get your business.

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