How Long Does SEO Take?
Insights from Peppermint Soda

As an experienced digital marketing agency, we have guided numerous clients through the complex yet rewarding journey of Search Engine Optimisation (SEO). One of our most frequent questions is: "How long does SEO take?"

While there’s no one-size-fits-all answer, our SEO experts explain how it works, the average timeline, and when you can expect results.

It’s A Marathon, Not a Sprint

At Peppermint Soda, we emphasise that SEO is a long-term investment rather than a quick fix. Unlike paid advertising, where results are immediate but temporary, SEO builds a sustainable foundation for your online presence. This process involves optimising your website’s content, technical elements, and off-site factors, gradually earning the trust of search engines.

How Long Does Search Engine Optimisation Take?

Key Factors Influencing SEO Timelines

Several factors determine how quickly you can see results from your SEO efforts. Here’s what we consider essential:

  1. Website History and Status

New vs. Established Websites: A brand-new website typically takes longer to gain traction than an established one. New sites start with no domain authority or backlinks, requiring time to build credibility with search engines.

Previous SEO Efforts: If your site has been optimised, we can build on the existing foundation, potentially shortening the timeline.

Penalties and Recovery: Recovering from penalties due to past SEO malpractices is a complex process that can extend the timeline.

  1. Industry Competition

The competitive landscape of your industry affects SEO timelines. Ranking for popular keywords in highly competitive sectors takes more time and effort, while achieving high rankings in less competitive niches can be quicker.

  1. Keyword Strategy

We emphasise a balanced keyword strategy. Targeting highly competitive keywords requires significant time and resources. Therefore, we also focus on long-tail keywords, which are easier to rank for and can drive targeted traffic.

  1. Quality Content Creation

Content is at the heart of SEO. High-quality, relevant content is essential for engaging users and signalling that your site is valuable to search engines. This process is ongoing and requires continuous effort and creativity.

  1. Technical SEO

Technical aspects, such as site speed, mobile-friendliness, and secure connections (HTTPS), are critical. Ensuring your site meets these criteria can expedite SEO progress. Technical issues need to be addressed promptly to avoid hindering performance.

  1. Backlink Profile

A robust backlink profile is crucial. Building quality backlinks is a gradual process that involves creating valuable content and strategic outreach. This aspect of SEO can significantly influence how quickly your site gains authority and ranks higher.

SEO Timelines: A Peppermint Soda Perspective

From our experience at Peppermint Soda, here’s a general timeline for SEO activities and when you might expect to see results:

  1. First Month: Laying the Groundwork

In the initial phase, we focus on research and planning. This includes:

SEO Audit: Evaluating your website’s current performance and identifying areas for improvement.

  • Keyword Research: Identifying relevant keywords that align with your business goals.
  • Competitive Analysis: Analysing competitors to understand the competitive landscape.
  • Content Strategy: Develop a content plan that addresses user intent and keyword opportunities.

You might see little changes in rankings during this period, but we are establishing a solid foundation.

  1. Second to Third Month: On-Site Optimisation 

Next, we focus on optimising your website’s on-site elements, including:

  • Content Creation and Optimisation: Developing and optimising content such as blog posts to target identified keywords.
  • Technical SEO Enhancements: Improving site speed, ensuring mobile-friendliness, and addressing technical issues.
  • On-Page SEO: Optimising meta tags, headers, and internal linking structures.

You may start to see some improvements in rankings and traffic during this phase, but significant changes are still to come.

  1. Fourth to Sixth Month: Building Authority

At this stage, we shift our focus to building your site’s authority through:

  • Content Marketing: Publishing high-quality, relevant content consistently.
  • Link Building: Acquiring backlinks from reputable websites.
  • Social Media Engagement: Leveraging social platforms to drive traffic and engagement.

During these months, you should start noticing more significant improvements in your site’s rankings, traffic, and overall visibility.

  1. Sixth Month Onwards: Continuous Improvement

From the sixth month onwards, SEO becomes an ongoing process of refinement and adaptation. Activities include:

  • Content Updates: Keeping your content fresh and up-to-date.
  • Ongoing Link Building: Continuously seeking quality backlinks.
  • Performance Monitoring: Using tools like Google Analytics to track performance and adjust strategies as needed.

If your SEO strategy is well-executed by this time, you should see substantial improvements in search engine rankings and organic traffic.

Real-World Success Stories

To illustrate how these timelines translate into real-world success, let’s look at a few case studies from our portfolio:

  • E-commerce Client 

An e-commerce client specialising in barbecue products began their SEO journey with Peppermint Soda in early 2024. Focusing on a complete website audit, which resulted in many duplicate page removals, before starting on long-tail keywords and a robust content marketing strategy, the brand saw a steady increase in organic traffic within three months, thanks to improved rankings for targeted keywords.

  • Blogging Success

Our Mergers & Acquisitions business client partnered with us to enhance their PR & SEO efforts. The brand has seen increased engagement and enquiries by consistently publishing high-quality, optimised content and engaging in strategic outreach. 

Patience and Persistence with Peppermint Soda

At Peppermint Soda, we understand that SEO is a long-term commitment. While the timeline for seeing results can vary, our experience has shown that consistent effort and a strategic approach yield significant rewards. You can typically expect meaningful improvements within six months to a year. Remember, SEO is about building a sustainable and long-lasting online presence.

Partnering with us can accelerate your SEO success. We specialise in crafting tailored SEO strategies that deliver tangible results. 

Contact us today to discover how we can help you achieve your SEO goals and drive your business forward. Email [email protected] 

You can find out more about SEO in our other blogs, too:

How to boost your visibility and traffic with SEO

Does a blog on your website contribute to SEO?

SEO versus SEM – what should you use and when?

Why is SEO important for small businesses?

6 top tips to boost your local SEO

Read all about it...