How Long Does It Take a Website to Rank on Search Engines?

09.03.2019 / Posted in Articles, Digital Marketing

You just purchased a domain, built and launched your new site, and then went skipping along to Google to see your site turn up in the search engines… and it’s not there.

Why isn’t my site showing up? Isn’t there a button you can push that makes the site show up on Google? When will the site show up? Why isn’t it on the first page?

These are questions that we receive frequently.

Spoiler Alert: There’s No Quick Fix

First, there’s no “Easy Button” when it comes to search engines. Nothing will magically make your website suddenly appear, and there is no way to manually change your positioning. We’re sorry if this isn’t the answer you were looking for, but it’s the truth.

Okay, then what must happen to get a new site to show up on search engines and to start to rank well on its own?

Alert Search Engines to Index Your New Site

Search-engine algorithms need to crawl your site before it can show up as a search result.

There are ways to notify Google and other search engines that you have a new site and that it needs to be indexed, but you can’t control when this crawl happens. Typically, it happens shortly after submission, but search engines don’t make any promises as to when it will actually take place.

Once a site has been indexed, it simply means that this site is on search engines’ radar and can now start to show up in search results.

When Does the Domain “Gain Traction” on Search Engines?

How long does it take a site to gain traction in search engines’ organic rankings, with minimal effort to promote it?

The leading research says that it really takes about six months. Is this true?

To test this notion, we built a site, launched it in July 2018, and then didn’t touch it for six months. This site had decent content (roughly 100 pages) and a basic SEO setup, and we sent its sitemap to Google for indexing when we posted it live.

For the first six months, traffic was low. Then, around January 2019 (the six-month mark) things started to pick up—and dramatically. After seven months, traffic was on a much steeper upward incline. Each month, the organic traffic to this site continues to steadily grow.


This experiment proves that it does, indeed, take roughly six months for a brand-new site to get traction with how it ranks on Google organically.

Six Months is a Long Time to Wait!

What do you do if you need your site to start seeing results before six months passes?

A marketing strategy that combines content marketing and paid and organic search marketing can help boost your website’s performance and traffic. The benefits of marketing will help in the short term and will improve your long-term site performance as well.

Don’t Settle on the Quick Fix

A good strategy marries short-term and long-term goals.

Paid search is a great short-term solution. (Paid search can be a good long-term solution as well, yet your plan will need to evolve as your site gains traction. In the short term, focus your search ads on gaining immediate visibility.) Depending on your near-term goals, paid search can get your domain listed in the first position for your company name and can get you some early traffic to your site.

Your content and organic strategies are longer-term investments. The results are not instant, but they will last longer and, in the long-term, they can have a more lasting impact. When developing a strategy, it’s important to consider both goal types.

In Short: Have Patience

It will take time—roughly six months—for a new website on a new domain to gain traction on the search engines without any marketing efforts to help push it along.

A strong and well-balanced strategy can help you to see results sooner and get results that are longer lasting. For a free consultation on how FrogDog can help you to improve your digital marketing strategy, contact us.


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