How long does it take to get results on Google? How soon to be first on Google ? How quickly will I be present on this keyword in the search engines? Here are the kinds of questions that many clients ask SEOs and SEO agencies when they start SEO work, mainly for a brand new site that has just been put online.
There is no exact or ready-made answer to this important question . The natural referencing of your website is a discipline that requires time, patience and continuous actions over time in order to see your sites appear in the first places on targeted requests.
Many SEO specialists will tell you that it takes 4 to 6 months to start getting good SEO . That's usually correct, but remember that's when you start to see results, and it increases over time.
The results you get at 6 months should be significantly lower than those you get at 12 months.
The success of your natural referencing strategy will depend on many factors: niche, competition, age of the site, allocated budget, continuity of actions over time, perseverance, quality netlinking...
An SEO agency like Net Offensive will be able to carry out an Audit of your competitors in order to assess the difficulty of the SERPs and give you an approximate duration to start measuring the first returns from the work of natural referencing.
The investment, the result and the ROI of an SEO strategy are measured over time. Here are some tips and statistics to better understand what to expect.
Do you know how Google finds, analyzes and ranks billions of web pages in order to display the results when a keyword is typed on the search engine?
The process is broken down into 3 steps:
- The crawl: follow the links to discover all the content.
- Indexing: storage of information on all retrieved urls for later retrieval.
- Ranking: Determine the content of each page and its rank for relevant queries.
The content may vary (a web page, an image, a video, a PDF, etc.), but regardless of the format, the content is discovered through links.
The more links you have to your site, the more likely you are that they will crawl your site more often.
Search engines process and store the information they find in an index . It is a huge database containing all the content discovered by robots and that the algorithms deem good enough to be offered to Internet users.
Google crawls and caches urls at different frequencies. Well-known sites that publish articles frequently will be crawled more often than much less popular websites.
To determine the relevance of a page on a keyword, search engines use algorithms to analyze and classify the information stored on sites and pages.
Google's goal is always to provide the most relevant content for its users.
In order to deliver relevant results to the user of his search engine, he must perform some critical steps:
- Interpret the intent of the user's request.
- Identify the pages in the index associated with the query.
- Rank and return them in order of relevance and importance.
Not all companies start natural referencing with the same objectives and ambitions, the same resources and budgets…
How long it takes for a new domain and website to rank in Google is highly dependent on the unique circumstances of the situation. Each case is unique.
There are, however, lingering factors that influence ranking time, including:
- Is the website new or old?
- What is the investment in the SEO strategy?
- Does the brand or company already have a reputation to exploit?
- Is the level of competition with competitors high.
- Is the industry and niche exploitable in SEO.
- Does the site have popularity (name of incoming links and netlinking).
- Site technical health audit.
- SEO expertise/resource.
- Content quality and semantics / volume / frequency / targeting / type.
- User experience.
- Local or national referencing.
- SEO techniques and advanced optimizations or not.
The company that publishes the Ahrefs SEO monitoring tool carried out an interesting study in 2017 based on 2 million random keywords and the pages present on these keywords in the Top 100.
Knowing approximately the date of creation, they were able to obtain interesting indicators on the performance of these pages according to their age and various other criteria such as keyword competition, site popularity, etc.
The purpose of the audit was to provide concrete elements to the question:
How long does it take for my site or page to rank on the first page of Google?
Of the 2 million randomly selected queries and analyses, these statistics emerge:
- The average age of the pages positioned in first position on the keywords is on average more than 3 years.
- Those in the Top 10 are on average 2 years old or more.
If we focus on the age of the pages present in the Top 10:
- 59% in the Top 10 are 3 years and older.
- 19% are 2 years old.
- 22% are less than a year old.
Of the 2 million keywords tested, it appears that only:
- 1.3% of those less than a year old are in first position.
- 4.2% are in tenth position.
The study then focused on 2 million pages that had been created a year earlier in order to follow their evolution in Google's ranking.
Only 6% of all those studied rank in the top 10 in less than a year for at least one keyword.
Despite being one year old or less, those sites with a domain name with significant popularity generally rank better than the others.
Domains with a history and already developed popularity will have an easier time positioning new pages . A new or unpopular site has an 80% chance of not even being in the Top 100 after 1 year.
Positioning speed of the top pages that ranked in 1 year based on popularity.
If we focus on the 6% who managed to reach the Top 10 in 1 year and less, we can see that it took between 2 and 6 months for the majority to rank in the top 10.
Positioning after 1 year according to the competition.
If we observe the 2 million pages studied, but this time according to the competition on the targeted keywords, little has been found that:
- On a competitive keyword, only 0.3% of pages ranked in the Top 10 in less than a year.
- 4.8% enter the Top 10 for low-competition queries.
- Of the most competitive, 98% are not in the Top 10 after 1 year. Positioning speed of the best pages that ranked in 1 year based on the competition.
If we focus on the 6% of pages that managed to reach the Top 10 in 1 year or less, we can see that it is faster for these pages to position themselves on low-competition keywords, whereas for those who are the most, it will take 1 year in 69% of cases.
The study shows several things about the 2 million pages and keywords that served as benchmarks for the study:
- 95% of news are not present in the Top 10 after one year.
- Positioning is faster on non-competitive expressions.
- The popularity of the site plays on the speed.
It is still not possible to answer the question of how long it will take to rank on a keyword , but the study at least has the merit of understanding that it will take patience and time.
It would have been interesting to know the profile of the sites having fast performances, and obtaining positions on the first page in 1 year and less. Are they largely optimized by SEO professionals?
Publishing on a site that already has authority and seniority will have an advantage over a new site that needs to gain trust with Google.
Positioning yourself on less competitive and long-tail keywords will eventually lead to faster results. New content can also have the chance to position itself in a few hours or days on those that are not very competitive.
Natural referencing strategies are built over the long term. Google's SEO criteria are numerous and the competition can be fierce.
Ranking on Google takes work and discipline . Even once the objective is achieved, nothing is acquired and each result obtained must be maintained.
Do not expect to put in place a lasting strategy in a few weeks or months , the first effects are obtained after a few months and efforts must be prolonged over time to maintain traffic.
Run away from dream sellers who offer you quick web referencing formulas to get ahead of all your competitors quickly and cheaply. SEO responds to well-known rules
If you would like to receive sound advice and increase the chances of succeeding with your online traffic acquisition strategy, do not hesitate to contact us.