How Long Does it Take to Rank Locally?

Linda Buquet

Moderator
Joined
Jun 28, 2012
Messages
13,307
Yes, thanks for sharing Joy!

What's funny is I covered the original post that PDF was in and we had a pretty lively discussion here about it back in 2013. BUT I don't think I ever actually clicked over to see that full PDF. So it's even new to me.

Here's are original post with 18 or so great comments from the pros:
<a href="http://www.localsearchforum.com/local-seo-ranking/2119-how-long-get-local-search-engine-optimization-ranking-results-answers-inside.html">How Long to get Local SEO Ranking Results? Answers Inside</a>

So thanks for bringing it back up Joy. This is one of those things everyone should have in their arsenal.

This is Phil's original blog post that PDF was in. I link to it because as always, the replies are often as valuable as the original post is.

<a href="http://www.localvisibilitysystem.com/2013/01/31/how-long-local-seo-takes-the-short-version/">How Long Local SEO Takes: the Short Version | LocalVisibilitySystem.com</a>

Oh and here is his previous post from the year before where 10 experts weighed in with answers:

<a href="http://www.localvisibilitysystem.com/2012/10/02/how-long-does-local-search-visibility-take/">How Long Does Local-Search Visibility Take? | LocalVisibilitySystem.com</a>
 

Andy

Member
Joined
Jun 17, 2014
Messages
34
This is an older post that I must have missed when Phil posted it originally.
I am a little surprised, given the speed at which things change in local SEO and also given the changes observed over the last years (pigeon etc..), that this information is still valid and not considered outdated (?) Any reason why you all seem to think it is trustworthy?
 

JoyHawkins

Administrator
Joined
Jul 18, 2012
Messages
3,004
The approach I take to getting clients ranked on Google over the last few years has definitely changed but I wouldn't say the length of time it takes to show a client results has changed at all. I would still agree with the different scenarios and time lengths in this article.

If you find any of them to be different than what you've experienced, I'd be curious to hear about it.
 

JoshuaMackens

Local Search Expert
Joined
Sep 12, 2012
Messages
1,824
Joy,

No website and no GMB page: 4-6 months seems a little short.

Is Phil talking about ranking on page 1? Is he talking about for your main terms or just minor terms?

I would imagine this also differs wildly based on competition.
 

Laustin1878

Member
Joined
Sep 27, 2012
Messages
412
The only tried and true way to show 1st page results in a short amount of time (under 6 months) is either AdWords, direct search for the business name or for terms that have little to no competition.

I usually say approximately 6 months as you need to get the site visible on Google's radar and that takes content, social media to syndicate the content, Google Webmaster Tools so you can submit sitemaps and fetch pages in Google, etc.

There are a lot of variables clearly but 6 months is usually the starting point. Doesn't usually go over well though...lol
 

Susan

Member
Joined
Aug 15, 2014
Messages
57
And to me 6mos - is ONLY if they doing all of the above mentions. If there is even one piece missing it will take longer to rank locally.
 

JoshuaMackens

Local Search Expert
Joined
Sep 12, 2012
Messages
1,824
I have to agree.

6 months to Page 1 for main keyword with no website or prior GMB page would potentially be feasibly in a market with maybe 100,000 people or less living in it. Anything above that population-wise, in my experience, is tough. I would also more than likely extend the timeline 1-2 months per 100,000 population count after that.

Joy, curious to hear your take on this.

This has been my experience but if people are doing much better than this, I need to up my game even more than I realize.
 

Phil Rozek

Local Search Expert
Joined
Jul 26, 2012
Messages
1,558
@Andy

Joy nailed it.

The basic process of local SEO hasn't changed in the past few years - and arguably not even the "changes observed" in Google have amounted to much.

In any case, those timeframe estimates assume that you (or your client) have been doing everything that you're supposed to do (e.g. get links, get reviews, etc.).
 

patrice

Member
Joined
Jul 11, 2015
Messages
27
I'm quite surprised by the delays in this document, from my perspective it really depends on your "authority", let's say that you're a new local business from Austin Texas AND you can get featured on the front page of the Austin chamber of commerce for a couple of days you can be pretty sure to rank very well very fast... I've managed to have successful local rankings in 5 days (that was a magical score, i don't always get that lucky and yes sometimes i even fail, i had so many doors that were opening to me that it was like i won the lottery for this specific customer).

Just saying that it's possible to be fast with the right tools and the right timing and the right connexions (lots of "if" "and"). It also depends on the competition and the adwords cost (it's pretty certain from my perspective that it's harder to rank naturally on something that costs $50 cpc) , i'm pretty sure a "plumber in austin" is way more competitive than "french bakery in austin"
 

JoshuaMackens

Local Search Expert
Joined
Sep 12, 2012
Messages
1,824
I'm quite surprised by the delays in this document, from my perspective it really depends on your "authority", let's say that you're a new local business from Austin Texas AND you can get featured on the front page of the Austin chamber of commerce for a couple of days you can be pretty sure to rank very well very fast... I've managed to have successful local rankings in 5 days (that was a magical score, i don't always get that lucky and yes sometimes i even fail, i had so many doors that were opening to me that it was like i won the lottery for this specific customer).
Just saying that it's possible to be fast with the right tools and the right timing and the right connexions (lots of "if" "and"). It also depends on the competition and the adwords cost (it's pretty certain from my perspective that it's harder to rank naturally on something that costs $50 cpc) , i'm pretty sure a "plumber in austin" is way more competitive than "french bakery in austin"
It would be hard for Phil to cover all of the caveats. I think his post was done with an "all things considered" approach, which is how a post of that magnitude would have to be written. So kudos Phil.

But yes, you're correct. There are a ton of caveats and every client is different.
 

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