How long will it take to appear on page 1?

I was asked this question again today.  A local small business owner that I met at a networking meeting was interested in online marketing (“SEO” he said…).  He asked me how long it would take to get his business listed on page one “…of Google”.

My response to him was simple and direct  – ‘we can get your business on page one within a few days‘.  Of course… I then went on to explain our managed search engine marketing program, e.g., AdWords, Bing, etc.

This small business owner’s reply was all too typical.

Nobody clicks on those ads…

I have become accustomed to this unenlightened (I’m being kind here…) reaction to paid search advertising.  While mid- and large- sized businesses know the massive revenue generating power of search engine marketing, many small business owners don’t.  Yes, I quoted all the usual stats to him. I told him how upwards of 40% of clicks on a search engine results page (SERP) go to the paid ads (for commercial-intent queries).  But it didn’t matter.  That he “…never clicks on those paid ads.”, was enough evidence for him to  conclude why “…nobody clicks on those ads”.

Nope, he wanted to be on page one organically. Too many small business owners are driven by ego. They are willing to spend thousands of dollars on search engine optimization (SEO) for the lure of page one, when they should be investing first in paid search advertising. (Why wait months, years, for inbound sales leads?) Of course, you should optimize your web site with good SEO practices.  But if you’re like many small businesses (especially new ones), unless you fix typewriters, you probably won’t show on page one for a while (if ever).

So once again, the answer to the question is this – ‘we can get your business on page one within a few days’.

Now check out this awesome infographic on paid search.

About Mike Cancell

Mike has been a thought leader in the area of mobile communications and digital marketing for the past 20 years. He is the principal partner of Adverscan, a small multi-channel marketing agency located in the Raleigh-Durham area of North Carolina. When not daydreaming about skiing in the Rockies, wind surfing in the Caribbean, and dating supermodels, he can be found at home trying the patience of his wife and kids.