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Am I wasting my time & money on SEO!?

September 24, 2021
Tom Maynard
Am I wasting my time & money on SEO!? - Web Choice UK

Google's goals are to provide relevant, quality search results that are easy to view. Google does this by evaluating online content, which is continually developing in their algorithm updates. These algorithm updates can instantly affect website rankings, which can catch you unaware and leave you scrabbling to update your own SEO efforts to reflect the changes.

SEO doesn’t typically deliver overnight results, but with time and patience you will see measurable results.

Here’s a quick breakdown of the SEO process

  • 1) Keyword research
  • 2) Onpage optimisation
  • 3) Optimising your link profile
  • 4) Monitoring your site rankings
  • 5) Reputation building

This is the same process that Google follows, which is why SEO works gradually over time. Think of it as organic evolution.

Traditionally, organic search results are produced when all the elements of an online marketing campaign combine to deliver results. When all factors align at the same time, they produce rapid results for your business, but with SEO, this happens incrementally over an extended period of time, but you can still see real, measurable gains at each step of the way, and with each new update.

So SEO isn’t instant?

No, sadly not! SEO takes time because it is a natural process of development, not an instant ‘one button’ fix.

It can take a few months for an SEO campaign to work effectively. As mentioned above, in the optimisation stage each stage influences the next, this is how organic results are produced.

For example, if you have optimised your on-page content but have no backlinks pointing to that page, all of that effort would be wasted. The same principle applies if all of your backlinks are coming from websites for spam. Therefore, it is vital to understand the whole process before you decide to make an investment in SEO.

The first six months are crucial for building up your site's foundational structure and content, but don't expect results right away; instead look for measurable progress during each step of the process, and with every algorithm update that Google rolls out.

Watch your back!

As you move through the optimisation stages, remember to keep an eye on your competitors, take note of changes in keyword search trends and follow industry blogs for updated information on upcoming updates. With every update, try to learn about your competitors as much as possible. Learn what your competitors are doing and what kind of strategies you can implement to outrank them.

During the initial months, long-term goals should include building up enough quality content that will eventually start to rank naturally, whilst maintaining a competitive edge over similar businesses in your industry. During this time focus on building and optimising your site's foundational elements (i.e., on-page optimisation, link profile and monitoring progress), rather than looking for short-term results or instant gratification. You want a greatest hits album, not a one-hit wonder!

Another tip is to use ‘Google Trends’ to monitor search trends and reposting content after a similar topic becomes popular, in order to catch the peak of the wave at just the right moment.

Why does SEO take so long to work?

The process of natural search development is gradual, where elements work together to create an environment where relevant content will naturally be shared amongst users. Each step of the process affects the next in order for organic results to be produced over time, which happens incrementally through every update that Google rolls out. This process simply can't be forced or accelerated, it works gradually… Just let the cake slowly rise!

Yes, SEO takes time but produces long-term sustainable results that won't disappear overnight.

SEO begins with keywording your site, before creating quality content through good research. Once this is done, other elements such as link building and on-page optimisation need to be enhanced to strengthen your site's foundation. As these aspects relate to other key factors that Google uses for ranking purposes, you can't expect quick results all at once.

And finally: how long does it take SEO to really start working?

You need to be patient with the search engine optimization process. Sometimes results may appear sporadically which is why people get easily discouraged when they see little progress. This does not mean that you should give up, but rather stay not track and use this period of six months to improve your site.

In order to create a successful SEO strategy, it takes time for website optimization to produce real results that will work with every update Google rolls out over time. It is always necessary to create a strong foundation that supports organic search rankings through natural processes. Depending on how often websites are developed and what goals people have set in their strategies, this may take less, or even more time.

The only way to know for sure what’s working is by scientifically testing individual elements. If you want to see your website move up the rankings, take the time needed to do it properly, applying SEO techniques correctly, whilst avoiding shortcuts and quick fixes that will only muddy the water. Be patient and focus on creating a strong foundation by using high-quality content that directly connects with your customers.

This process takes at least six months to do properly because every factor affects another for organic results to occur naturally with every Google update.

Remember: don't expect overnight success, because when it comes to SEO, slow and steady wins the race!

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