In the real world, most people are in a rush to see results from their digital marketing efforts. They automate content, manipulate search algorithms or use black hat SEO tactics to get results fast. But are these the shortcuts you should be taking and how long does it take before you see results from digital marketing? The truth is, good things take time. Some tactics take longer to build and see the results from. The rest of this post gives details on how long it takes to see results from some of the most popular types of digital marketing.

Social Media Management (SMM)

how long before you see results from social media marketing?

The time it takes before you see results your SMM will depend on where you are in terms of social media presence. If you’re starting from scratch, it could take 6-9 months. This is enough time to push for followers and start your engagement campaigns. And be sure to decide on the metrics you want to track. You can focus on the number of followers or likes, if you like. But focusing on engagement is key to success.

The time needed to see results from SMM will also depend on the industry. You’ll take longer to see the results on a business-to-business industry than a business-to-consumer industry.

So, what is the realistic time to build your social media presence? The time it takes will depend on planning and investment. The first few months should be for cultivating a relationship with readers and reaching out to new prospects. To achieve this, you should share great content that interests your target audience.

If you publish new content every week, you’ll see quicker results than if you only published content once or twice a month. But frequency alone will not guarantee success – you must publish high-quality content too. Consider reading our blog post titled Best Practices for Posting Content on Social Media for more tips about this type of marketing.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

This digital marketing strategy requires patience to achieve the desired results. Experts agree it can take 3-6 months for you to start seeing good results from SEO.

However, search engine optimization results typically get much better with time. While you may see an improvement in organic ranking in just a few weeks, competitive topics could take months. The time it takes for your SEO strategy to deliver results will depend on how long your website has been around, the content on the website and the quality and quantity of backlinks coming to your website.

When you first get started with SEO, you will begin with keyword research and auditing the website. Then, based on the this, you will probably need to make some updates to the website.

Once the website is cleaned up for SEO, you should focus on creating core (pillar) pages. These core pages usually focus on the key services you offer. For example, if you’re in commercial real estate, you may want services pages for tenant representation, landlord representation, office space, retail space, industrial space, etc. Create a page for each primary service or product you offer.

Once you have created all the pages you need, for your website, you should continue creating quality content in the form of blogging. You can expect to see more traffic, lead generation and an increase in rankings by doing this.

After you’ve spent some time creating good blog content, you will want to start sharing that content through social media. This will definitely help boost your exposure and credibility. This all takes time and effort, but this is what leads to success with SEO, and ultimately greater sales.

Pay-Per-Click (PPC)

Compared to other digital marketing strategies, PPC brings in results almost instantly! It increases brand awareness, web traffic and profitability. As you refine your PPC strategy, you can expect to see optimal results in about three to nine months.

To realize the full potential, you should manage the PPC campaign carefully. So, why does the time vary? There are several factors that impact the results you get from PPC.

One factor is the keywords you target. If you’re a coffee shop, you might make your ad show up for people who search “coffee shops near me.” Then, after a few months, you might learn that “coffee places near me” get’s better results. It takes time to test and add new keywords to your PPC campaign.

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Another factor that takes time is the landing page. When someone clicks an ad, where do they go? And, how can you improve the landing page so they are more likely to convert into a lead or sale? It could take a while to get this landing page just right.

A third factor is the wording of your ad. What is in the headline and what is in the body of the ad? What you start with may not be what you’re using a few months down the road. You will want to experiment with ads to see what gets the most clicks and the highest quality traffic to your website.

Of course, your PPC advertising will instantly start generating more awareness and exposure for your brand. And it’s quite possible for you to make a sale on the first day of running PPC ads. But, the best results don’t usually come until after a few months.

Content Marketing (Blogging)

It takes about 6-12 months for your content marketing efforts to show. Generally, companies with more published blog posts get more traffic compared to those with fewer. It’s estimated that companies that blog 16+ times a month get 3.5 times more traffic than those who blog 0-4 times a month.

So, how consistent are you with your blogging efforts? Although you may have great content, it doesn’t guarantee that you’ll get immediate results once you publish it. With some consistency, you can produce lasting results. That being said, there’s no specific formula or a magic number to predict how long it will take to see the results.

Unless you have a larger audience, it will take time for on-site content marketing to rank in search. But if you publish fresh content consistently, you can expect to start seeing some good progress from your blogging within about six months. Also, if your content strategy for the blog is in alignment with your SEO strategy, you should expect to get much quicker results than if your blogging works independently from an SEO strategy.

Final Thoughts

It can take time to see results from digital marketing. But, digital marketing is the most effective type of marketing for most businesses. The cost is far lower than traditional marketing (billboards, flyers, commercials, etc.) and the conversion rates are typically much higher. SEO, for example, is about 750% more effective at conversions than traditional media. Also, digital marketing can be scaled to almost any budget. If you’re preparing to start a businesses, then go ahead and start planning out your marketing approach. The sooner you begin marketing, the sooner you can start seeing great results.

If you need help with your digital marketing strategy, or execution, let us know! You can connect with us through the contact form at the end of this post.


Joshua Lyons Marketing, LLC was established in 2015. Since that time we have provided digital marketing services to business and professionals. We help our clients increase their online exposure as a means to increase sales and revenue. Our core services include search engine optimization (SEO), website development and content creation. We also provide other online marketing services, such as email marketing, marketing consultations and various types of advertising. Our team is based in the Milton, Pace and Pensacola, Florida area. However, we work with clients throughout the United States. Read More



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