This is a difficult question to answer. As a general rule, I suggest that we go for at least a 6 month campaign to ensure we get the results to grow your business.
Having said that, you will definitely see some positive movement within the first two months.
The timeframe can vary wildly on your industry and the competition levels. Think about a local plumber servicing a few suburbs versus a company selling medical aid.
For a local plumber, there is far less competitors. On top of that, chances are there are few other plumbers in his area doing SEO on their websites. This is what we call a low competition campaign.
For the company selling medical aid, you will be going up against some very big companies. Imagine what those companies are spending on marketing, you aren’t going to compete with them in the search engines unless you have deep pockets.
If you have an established website, and have some decent on-page optimization with some links pointing to your site, you could see results faster than the 6 months I mention above.
What is the best way to determine if you have a solid foundation to start from?
Take your service, add the location you serve (e.g. plumber pretoria east). Do a Google search for the term, and see where your website is currently ranking.
If your website is ranking anywhere on page 1, 2 or 3, you can expect results much sooner than 3 months. If you can’t find your website, we need to lay a proper foundation which can take up to 6 months for us to see great results.