When you set out to get a website ranking well on the search results pages, it can be a good idea to set out goals and a timetable for your search engine optimization activities. There are times however when individuals set goals that are unrealistic and timetables for events that are out of their control.
Every webmaster would like to see their sites ranking at number one for their preferred keyword. In niches that are highly competitive, achieving number one may rather difficult. I have no problems with an individual setting that as a long term goal. In the short term you may only make page two or the bottom of page one despite a concentrated search engine optimization program.
Over time, with a lot of hard work and little relevant link building luck, you may reach that number one spot. In the meantime you need to set realistic milestones that are achievable. Your SEO program can only achieve so much.
Timetables are one area that can be a concern. Having a timetable of when you are going to have components of your SEO program completed by is fine. Setting a timetable of when you expect to see results can often be demoralizing and frustrating.
Achieving your timetable of task completed is a smart move. The results however are generally out of your hands. Yahoo! for example often takes longer to index new pages than Google. There are so many components that can affect your results that setting a timetable is not realistic.
The most important component is the search engine itself. You have little control over when and how often they visit and index your pages. While you may be able to prompt them, in reality they come and spider and index a site in their own good time.
Part of an effective search engine optimization campaign is to set goals and to establish a timetable. You should also understand that some of the components that go into establishing rank, components such as indexing and the discovery of inbound links can take time. I have seen pages rank well after only a couple of weeks while a similar page elsewhere has taken several months if not longer.
SEO is an activity that, like a fine wine, takes time to mature. As it matures it will grow and as your PageRank climbs, so too will your inbound links. One of the most important virtues to SEO is simple… patience.