Infographic: How Long Does It Take To Rank In Google?

by Sean Work

Last updated on October 7th, 2017

Ah, the keyword game. One of the greatest achievements for a search engine optimizer is to get their web pages to appear on the first page of Google search results for their desired keywords.

As Google ages, more and more of the optimal slots for these prized keywords are taken. And the more a web page ages, the more links from around the web will point to it and the harder it becomes to unseat.

For instance, when someone wants to reference or link to a certain topic, it’s a typical habit for someone to do a quick Google search and link to one of the top results. This just further cements the positions of those already at the top. I personally think this is a fundamental, although perhaps small, flaw with Google, and with popularity-based search results in general.

So what’s a content marketer supposed to do these days if most of the top keywords have been taken? Here’s what I say:

  • Don’t worry about keywords or rankings. Just create content that needs to be created for whatever you’re doing. Make a list and stick to it. You might need FAQ content, content to help your customers out, content to help your sales team. Think about how you can help.
  • Don’t forget to optimize in other areas. Do an on-page SEO audit, focus on PR, do some internal linking that may have been glossed over. Be sure your website is mobile-friendly and provides a good user experience. You never know, if you work on your other SEO areas, you may start ranking!
  • Keep producing content… and prepare for the next economic downturn (if there is going to be one). I’m not trying to say there is doom and gloom on the horizon – but there are business cycles, so just think about how that will affect your organization. In some spaces there may be a future “shake-out” and some websites might cease to exist. That means your content will have a chance to take those top spots.

Today’s infographic is a shocking look at how hard it is to rank for top keyword results in certain categories. Check it out below and feel free to share it.

how long does it take to rank in google

This infographic was originally published on



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Sean Work

Between rocket science and space shuttle design at Boeing and NASA to building the Kissmetrics blog to 1 million monthly readers, I’ve also helped dozens of online businesses with PPC, SEO, and Conversion Rate Optimization. If you have any questions about generating success online, write me a question now at


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  1. Helen says:
    October 25, 2017 at 4:42 am

    This is interesting, we’re a new starup and for some of the keywords we’ve chosen we have managed to get ranked on page one for some keywords and within the top three pages for most others. We only built the website in September.

    However, I’ve noticed that a lot of our competition have been around for a long time and one that recently changed their website had a drop in rank.

    Thanks for insightful information.

  2. Anonymous says:
    October 9, 2017 at 8:10 am

    Thanks for the info. I am webmaster doing SEO for my clients website and they are already coming on top on high ranked keywords. Your article will definitely help me in building strategies for my SEO work.

    • Sean Work says:
      October 9, 2017 at 1:48 pm

      Well it seems that you are beating the odds! Keep up the great work :).

  3. Anonymous says:
    October 9, 2017 at 1:49 am

    Sean, it is not really a “small flaw” on Google’s side to keep the popular boys always in the front even though some of them are way dumber than a few really bright but quiet kids sitting in the back of the class.

    • Sean Work says:
      October 9, 2017 at 1:48 pm

      I don’t think that’s intentional. Like I said, it’s common for people to keep linking back to the top 3 or more results.

  4. Ubed Shaikh says:
    October 7, 2017 at 7:13 am

    Yes it surely is one of the first question, people ask “How long does it take to rank my website in google?”

    The study (as claimed by ahrefs) is extensive and can be relied upon. Meaning you generally have to work super hard and wait for your site to show in google. It’s not that you create a site and it shows in google within days or week.

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