If you know some of the basics of local SEO and you understand what to do to get results, and now you might be wondering: “How long does it take for my Local SEO strategy to show effective results?” As with all things, there isn’t just one correct answer. It will depend on your industry, location, target keywords, etc.
The time needed to see positive SEO results varies depending on how competitive your keywords are. The less competitive your keyword is, the fewer people (and websites) there would be trying to rank for it; therefore, the easier it should be for you to outrank them.
Long-tail keywords are less competitive, which generally means that you will get your first-page ranking results much quicker than if you were targeting a head term. Work with a reliable local SEO agency to see effective and fast results.
- 1 Focus on Head Terms
- 2 What Other Factors Come into Play?
- 3 Can You Use Both Types of Keywords?
Focus on Head Terms
A head term would be a single word intended to target a particular type of customer. For example, ‘online marketing’ can be considered a head term, whereas ‘marketing agency’ will be a long-tail keyword because it precisely targets the customers.
If you are looking to get results quickly, go for long-tail keywords rather than head terms. However, using head terms might be best if you have the budget or want to target large companies or higher-end clients.
What Other Factors Come into Play?
1Your Geographic Location
It is easier to rank for head keywords in smaller towns than in cities, where more people are trying to rank for the exact keywords.
Head terms, if optimised correctly, should typically outrank long-tail keywords, so this is where some research comes into play.
Specific industries tend to fluctuate better than others on search engines, meaning that they get more searches and attract more competitors trying to rank for the exact keywords as you are.
If your industry changes on an annual basis, this could also affect how quickly you see results with both keywords (head and tail). You will need to identify a good head term with low competition and keep optimising it every year to get around this.
3How Well Your Website is Optimised for Local SEO
Ensure that your website is optimised for the main keywords you are going after. Otherwise, your website ends up with a poor domain age and authority, which means that it’ll be much harder to rank as quickly as possible for those local keywords.
Bad reviews can also affect how long this process takes because Google values those more highly than others.
4How Competitive are Your Keywords – Head or Long Tail?
Long Tail: Easier to rank and less competitive
Head: Harder to rank and more competitive
5Your Website’s Domain Age and Authority
How many links does your website have pointing to it? The number of links can influence how quickly you see results with your local SEO strategy, but the age of the domain name will come into play too.
Google has always valued older websites much more than newer ones, so this should be considered when optimising your head terms.
6The Voice of the Customer
Ultimately, reviews and testimonials will be a significant factor in ranking for local keywords too. The number of reviews you have and your company’s reputation amongst potential customers is something to consider when optimising for head or long-tail terms.
If you are not currently getting reviews from clients, this should be one of the first things you focus on. It ultimately has a significant effect on your website’s rankings within Google Maps. It doesn’t matter how good an SEO strategy you have if nobody knows about it!
How many competing websites are there? The number of competing websites plays a massive part in whether or not you’ll see positive results as quickly as possible. If you have a powerful head term that your competitors are not currently bidding on, this could be your golden ticket to rankings.
Can You Use Both Types of Keywords?
If you decide to target both types (head and long-tail), you are taking a risk. If you only target one type, then there would be less chance of seeing results quickly because you wouldn’t be attracting as many competitors, which therefore means that your strategy would take longer to work.
Plan out the process with your local SEO agency before you start spending money on it. Remember that you should consider both types of search words as part of a local SEO strategy.