Improving the visibility of your website is crucial for its success. These days unfortunately it has become a lot harder due to increase competition and therefore many are looking for a shortcut.

When it comes to SEO you can’t really take shortcuts and you need to think of the strategy long term. Quick results are usually attributed to dodgy tactics being used and if caught you could receive a penalty from Google.

The one thing many business owners want to know is how long it will take to improve rankings in Google. There is no exact number to answer this question because there are a number of different factors that come into play.

For example, level of competition, budget and skill are all factors that will determine how quickly your rankings improve. On top of this, you should be looking towards sustainable tactics that once your ranking does improve you look to keep your website there and not forget about it.

You need to always be looking to improve. If you get to top position for a competitive keyword, there are many other websites that will be fighting to knock you off that spot. Getting to the top is the first step, then you have to work on maintaining your position.

So how long does it really take to rank on Google? Well, research conducted by Ahrefs revealed quite a few interesting statistics:

  • On average, if a web page is ranked in the top 10 positions then it was over 2 years old.
  • The web pages that ranked in the top 10, there was only about 22% that were less than a year old.
  • About 94% of the web pages in the study didn’t make it to the first page in the first year.

This is why SEO needs to be thought of as a long-term strategy. Google does favour more established websites. If you are a new website all you can do is follow Google’s best practice and ensure your website meets the needs of users.

Now that you have a better understand of how long it takes to improve your rankings, you need to know what tactics you can take to do this. Take a look below at some of the best areas to focus on in order to improve your rankings:

1. Solid Foundation

First things first, you need a sound foundation to build up from. If your website has poor information and/ or structure it can unravel even the highest quality SEO strategies. 

As well as this, your website needs to be easy for users to navigate and for Google to crawl. Understand that the way users read and look at your website is completely different to the way that Google bots crawl your website, so you need to be accommodating to both.

It is vital that you preform a technical SEO audit of your website on a regular basis, so you can pick up on any issues and resolve them in a timely manner. This is something that many businesses seem to forget about, so if you do this often you will already probably be ahead of the game.

2. Speed

In this day and age, speed is vital. The longer your website takes to load the more people will give up and look elsewhere. Speed is crucial no matter what device users are viewing your website on. 

It is important that you check the speed of your website often and fix any issues affecting the speed. Google has a tool for this which makes things a lot easier, it is called Google PageSpeed tool and it is used to benchmark performance.

This tool clearly shows your site’s speed for desktop and mobile devices and provides you will details about any potential issues, as well as how to fix them. The best thing about this tool is that it is free!

One of the main issues is usually images or videos. Google has an option for you to re-download the images on a page as a smaller file without compromising on the quality.

3. Mobiles

With Google’s mobile first index, you can no longer ignore the importance of mobiles. If you do not have a mobile friendly or mobile version of your website, your site will effectively be pushed to the back of the queue, with mobile sites taking priority. 

Be sure to check your website on Google’s Mobile Friendly Test. This tool gives you a quick indication whether or not your website meets Google’s mobile friendliness standards. 

Also, you need to have a think about how mobile users will be interacting with your website. The way mobile users interact is usually different to the way desktop users interact. This is why it is a good idea to have two different versions of your website, and not just a site that is mobile friendly.