It’s understandably one of the most frequently asked questions that most seo agencies will get asked.
After all, that’s the whole purpose of an seo company, to get a business to rank as high as they can on Google, right?
That’s true, however before any agency owner pauses for breath, and then attempts to answer such a question, there are several things that each agency should consider first.
Therefore, the purpose of this article is to explain to business owners what a marketing agency should be considering, that’s before making an estimate for how long it will take to get a website onto the first page.
The level of competition
As you can imagine, there’s no point in entering a sports car from the 1960’s into a race today up against a brand-new sports car. As you would expect, there would be no contest.
The more sophisticated car, with its complex and modern engineering would win hands-down.
And this is the same when it comes to assessing a new website up against the established competition.
Of course, there’s no point in having a defeatist attitude, yet that said, its of paramount importance to be realistic as well.
What we mean by this is that both client and agency have to be is realistic about their chances of getting on to the first page, that’s within the constraints of their marketing budget.
Therefore, to enter the race, the agency and client must have thought about if their chances are realistic. As otherwise it can mean that a business is wasting money.
So, in a nutshell, if you do have a phone call, or a meeting with a local seo company, and they start repeatedly comparing your website with your direct competitors, well this can only be a good thing.
Comparing your businesses website, with your direct competitors is not an exercise in displaying how weak your website is in comparison, but instead an exercise of weighing-up how much seo work is actually needed.
Therefore, setting a benchmark that needs to be met, and then exceeded is indeed a very important factor that your seo agency must consider.
This comparison of your website, with your direct competitors is essential in determining how strong your websites “ranking signals” are.
There are thought to be over 200 signals that can be optimised. Google, as well as the other major search engines keep which signals they use, and which ones are the most important secret to their business.
This is with good reason, as if seo companies knew how the algorithm works, well some companies would try and cheat the algorithm.
Instead most seo businesses look at which businesses are the strongest, then spend great deals of time working out how that business is holding such a high position.
New websites are simply much harder to optimise
You may well be launching a new business, and therefore your website is therefore likely to be new as well.
It’s something that some marketing agencies do not make clear from the outset, and that is new websites are much harder to optimise.
This means it normally takes considerably longer to optimise a brand-new website. The reason being is a new website is somewhat of a blank canvas, it will most likely have no backlinks, no onsite seo and therefore it will take much longer to catch up with the competition.
Be realistic about how much you will have to spend
There are some seo agencies that advertise their services in the form of fixed priced packages.
Now this is all well and good, as often the potential customer would like to have a vague idea of costs prior to picking up the phone.
However, its worth keeping this in mind, if say you work in a competitive industry, you really do have to be realistic as to what you can achieve for a low set fee.
By this we mean, some agencies will take the fee from a business knowing full well its going to be a drop into the ocean of what’s really needed.
Imagine for example what some car insurance companies spend on online marketing per year, then a car insurance broker who wants to get onto the first page for say £300.00 a month, well how realistic is this? Not very is the answer.
Therefore, your seo agency would sit down and carefully evaluate the competition, as we earlier mentioned, its only then a price should be delivered.
Don’t forget that your competitors can step up seo activity at any time
There will be those businesses that have occupied the top positions within the SERP’s for many years.
They have grown accustomed to the high volume of sales that can come from ranking high in Google.
So, when a new company, or a company that has ambition to knock such a company off the top spot comes along, its often the case that some companies will ramp-up seo activity.
That’s to say a business may well break-through and get into the top three positions, yet the businesses at the top may well come back by investing even more time / money to ensure that they once again occupy the top position.
So, with this in mind, this is often why most seo agencies are reluctant as to state how long it will actually take to get to the top.
Not all agencies are equal
In seo there’s the term “white hat” that’s used to describe doing the job properly. So, a business owner may think that all they need to do is find a white hat agency, that offers what they want at an acceptable price, right?
Well, the answer to that is no, and the reason is some rubbish seo companies call themselves white hat, knowing full well they are not using white hat methods.
So, here’s the thing, how long it takes to get onto the first page we believe depends on two factors, that’s the strength of your competitors, and also whether the right agency has been hired.
Does your business need help with its online marketing?
There are so many businesses out there to choose from, yet we are trusted by many companies because of our honest approach to seo.
We simply explain things simply and honesty, so if you like our approach, then why not give us a ring?