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  • Aidan Bennett

How Long Does SEO Take to Work?

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Whenever you start a Search Engine Optimization (SEO) project, you will be informed that it takes a moment to start affecting your search traffic results. While most digital marketing agencies warn you of this, not many will explicitly tell you how long SEO takes to work. We're going to answer a few questions in this article including why digital marketing agencies don't give exact timelines for SEO, why SEO takes so long to start affecting your traffic, how long SEO takes to work for your website, and what steps you can make to improve your SEO.

Why do marketing agencies not say how long SEO takes to work?

While most agencies mean well by not telling you an exact timeline, their motives aren't entirely selfless. Here are a few reasons why agencies

1. They don't know how long it will take

It happens more often than you think. While many agencies will talk a big game of their SEO skills, how much it will increase your traffic, and other benefits of their service and experience. They simply don't know how long it will take to work. Whether this is from lack of experience or the individual case, a lot of agencies will avoid answering the question directly. Instead giving you a loose estimation or an intangible timeframe altogether.

2. They know but don't want to tell you

Sometimes an agency will know how long the SEO will take to work on your website but are afraid of your possible reaction. To avoid any conflict or possibility of you leaving the project, the agency simply won't give you a straight answer and will sometimes even lie to you about the estimated length of time the SEO will take to work. This is the most malicious out of the three reasons and is a red flag for any agency you're thinking about working with.

If you find out an agency lied to you about their knowledge of the timeline, the best course of action is to confront them and discuss reworking the project's price if you are no longer satisfied with the timeline.

3. They don't want to give you unrealistic expectations

While some agencies are malicious, others just want to be honest. Even though an agency may know a reasonable timeline, things can change. Due to their experience of how volatile SEO can be on a website's traffic, they will let you know that it isn't always smart to expect results within a given timeframe.

This is the route that most agencies you encounter should take when you ask about a timeline for results.

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Why does SEO take so long to work?

SEO takes a long time to work for one big reason. As search engines grow their results with more websites, blog posts, images, and other indexed resources, it becomes harder and harder for the search engine to figure out how to rank you among all the other results.

While SEO is meant to help raise your ranking among other results, changing all of your on-page SEO like the headings, image alt-text, page titles, and more, just takes time for the search engine to process. If you update your content, the search engine has to update its thoughts on your content and re-evaluate where to rank you against everything else.

How long does SEO take to work?

Generally speaking, SEO should take 3-6 months to begin showing you results. This information is readily accessible from websites like,, and other reliable SEO information hubs.

The next question you may be asking is how we know it takes this long. Well, the digital marketing community knows that the search engines take this long by studying thousands of SEO projects from a ton of different agencies and complying and comparing the results to find an average range of time that those projects saw a change in search traffic.

Ready to start your SEO project?

At NoiselessMarketing, we love to help our clients reach their digital marketing goals. A part of doing this is offering top-tier SEO services and consultation to businesses around the nation. If you'd like to be a part of our clients who are ready to tackle search engines then get in touch with us here and let's talk about your project!

We've helped businesses from all over the country increase their search engine traffic with our modular SEO strategy. Since you read to the bottom of this blog post, we'll reveal our secret... it's adaptable! No matter the shape or size of your business, we can adapt our SEO strategy to it and get you the results you deserve.


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