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  • How Long Does it Take to Earn Rank from Links?

    by Dan DeRoeck on October 11, 2011

    When a website links to your site for the very first time, that's considered a new link.  However, some people believe that the link is given instantaneous credit.  Not so at all.  In fact, there are many links that could even go unaccounted for, or at a minimum take time to be discovered by search engines.  This depends on numerous factors, many of which are out of your control.

    link buildingWhile it would be fantastic if links were recognized instantly, things just don't work that way on the web.  For example, let's assume you attain a link in your desired vertical, and was placed on their site today.  That link would not be considered until Google crawls that website and that page, and picks up the link.  Note, I said considered.  There's still much more to this picture than meets the eye.

    Google uses what is referred to as Google bots that essentially do nothing but crawl web pages.  These bots work the web at unbelievable rates.  But when you consider the vastness of the Internet (billions of pages), it's not likely or even reasonable to think links are updated instantly in Google's vast database.  And even if the link were picked up quickly, there still remains countless analysis that will be done to that link to determine relevancy and whether it should be considered "earned." 

    Here is an example.  Suppose you earn a link from a website that links to an article on your client's site.  After going back and forth with the webmaster for two weeks, the link is finally placed on the site.  Now, if we determine the crawl rate of the site where the new link was added to be two weeks, there is a very good chance, the new link will not be indexed for a full month! 

    And it's still not that easy.  As I mentioned, there is additional analysis done on each and every link to determine if it passes a slew of Google criteria.  On the flip side, things can also happen very quickly, you may see credit for links happen in as little as a few days. 

    The key takeaway here is you must explain to your clients that organic search ranking takes time and patience.  Most clients will ask you how long will it take to get high rankings for their keywords?  The honest answer is it can take a couple days, all the way up to several weeks.  It depends on the credibility and update frequency of the sites where the links are appearing in the campaign.


    { 15 comments… read them below or add one }

    Jorge October 14, 2011 at 3:29 pm

    These Google bots you speak of are they same thing as the web spiders? You have to have links on your web site in order to get ranked but you also have to be careful how they get there and how fast. Google picks up on these things if the links get there to fast and the next time it reviews your site there is nothing it makes them suspicious and they can and will sandbox you for thinking you are setting up spammy links. Be careful and heed the advice in this article I it is worth it.

    I. Clement October 15, 2011 at 1:44 am

    I strongly agree with what you have written here. Your post is very thorough and well thought of. It isn’t easy to rank high in search engines but with information’s like this one, makes the task easier. Thanks

    Robert October 16, 2011 at 1:48 am

    This is an excellent post. I enjoyed reading your article. This is worth sharing! Thanks for this.


    Kay October 17, 2011 at 2:35 pm

    Google is starting this campaign where they are going to start making updates to your web site based on information they find in the search engines. So if your page doesn’t get noticed by the Google Bots because of lack of links or updated content, maybe it would benefit you to wait a little bit and see what kind of update Google performs. These updates could help your ranking as well.

    yoga holidays October 18, 2011 at 3:50 am

    This is really helpful for me. I’ve been working with my rank. And this post really get into the point. So thanks!

    online background check October 19, 2011 at 9:13 am

    I’ve been wondering about that. I have many sites and I don’t know how I earn ranks using links. This article is very helpful.

    Russell October 20, 2011 at 5:28 pm

    This explains a lot, your post is put together very well and the content is great information. I understand now that it is all about the links, back links and traffic that gets you the ranking on the search engines. Now through your article I finally understand why that is. Thank you so much for your information.

    David October 22, 2011 at 5:13 pm

    From what I understand it can take quite a while to get a quality ranking on say Google search engines. It Is a time consuming effort but it is well worth it in the end. The trick will be once you get the ranking you seek you have to constantly monitor it so that it stays where you want it. You will have to make updates to your content frequently etc. But it will pay off for you believe me.

    Natalie October 24, 2011 at 7:18 pm

    From what I understand it can take quite a while to get the ranking you probably want and it has to be managed daily to keep it at the ranking you want. Is it true that certain companies can pay for a good ranking on search engines? Say a company has enough money they can pay Google for a number one spot on the first page, then is it true that it doesn’t matter what your ranking becomes, because this other company paid for their spot on the page they won’t get bumped? I read this somewhere so I wanted to ask someone about it. Thank you for the information you posted I appreciate it.

    Miguel November 1, 2011 at 6:12 pm

    Why does rank earning take so long? It would seem the sooner the search engines could get it ranked the better off it would be. I also don’t understand why you have to update your content so much in order to keep your ranking high when you finally get it where you want it. Who has time to do all of these updates and run a business? This basically forces your hand at hiring a company like an SEO service to do this stuff for you.

    Helene November 3, 2011 at 12:27 pm


    Francis November 10, 2011 at 7:50 pm

    The issue of how long it takes Google to update your web site is a question every web site owner wonders about. We are all familiar with the Google spiders, which were symbolized in the film, The Matrix, as those hideous mechanical search and destroy robots. As a web site owner, I sure wish the Google bots would work as voraciously as the spider bots hunt deviant humans in the matrix movie. Since that doesn’t appear to be the case, we’ll have to exercise patience along with methodical diligence by keeping our web pages updated. We shouldn’t just wait for the bots to find us either. I recommend webmasters use RSS feeders to submit new web pages and updates to those pages. It’s kind of like a squeaky wheel getting the oil first.

    edu backlinks November 15, 2011 at 3:20 am

    Google now keeps track of not only the age of your site, but the age of your backlinks. For this reason, the effect backlinks have on your SERPS may take even longer. This does not hold true for MSN and YAHOO. I have had sites ranking well at MSN, YAHOO (top ten for specific searches) in under 14 days. Google on the other hand usually requires a full year to see significant results.

    John November 30, 2011 at 10:14 am

    I have found this to be very true, backlinking is not immediate and you need a strong SEO strategy to see results within a few weeks.

    I have a semi-related question though: I have a site for which I had an SEO guy build a huge multi-thousand backlink pyramid. I thought it was a good idea and my site shot up to the very top (and for some keywords multiple top spots) of Google. But after about a week, my site fell.
    I later learned that if you start off guns a-blazing and go from a ton of backlinks to much less backlinks Google may ‘slap’ you for unnatural activity and can’t regain your ranks.

    Is there anyway for me to know for sure if I’ve been knocked down? Can a solid, gradual SEO strategy bring me back to the top or do I need to move all my content to a new domain and start over?



    Karen December 1, 2011 at 8:31 pm

    I am glad that Dan DeRoeck has addressed this topic because I am sure I am like many other people in wondering how long it takes for Rankings to take effect from back links. I have heard that if you use RSS feeds and then submit your RSS feeds to RSS directories, you can get the Google bots to read your site faster. I also wonder about the Google webmaster tools which enable you to submit pages whenever you update or create a new page. I wonder if this actually helps in speeding up the process of Google updating your Page Rank.

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