SEO / Why SEO Is A Long-Term Game

Why SEO Is A Long-Term Game

Andy Thorne
hands on a laptop

We often have clients ask us why our search engine optimisation (SEO) packages are done on a retainer basis rather than as one-off projects. 

Here’s the thing:

SEO is a long-term game. 

In order to see real, impactful results from optimisation of your website for search engines, you have to be patient. 

“Good things come to those who wait” comes to mind. 

But why?

In this blog we cover the reasons why SEO packages are best as long-term retainers and the issue with one-off SEO projects. 

Let’s get straight into it. 

Short Term SEO Is No More Than A Band Aid

Band aid illustration

Short-term SEO is nothing more than a band aid.

Can SEO work be done as a one-off project? 


Will you see sustainable results?

Probably not. 

Short-term or ‘one-off’ SEO is nothing more than a band aid – it covers over the cracks and fixes outstanding issues. 

It’s keeping your head above water.

The benefit that long-term SEO packages have over one-off projects is the long-time benefit. It’s about optimisation, rather than fixes. 

SEO Is An Iterative Process

Quick wins aren’t what they seem. 

Any agency that promises you results off the back of a one-off project should not be trusted. 


Because they’ll probably be using unethical or ‘black hat’ SEO methods that will result in your website being penalised by Google. 

The reality is that SEO is an iterative process.

The work you do one week may need building on the next. 

There’s no end point when it comes to SEO. It’s an on-going process and there’s always optimisations to be done. 

The Search Landscape Is Always Changing

Illustration of key points from Google's algorithm update

The most recent Google update focuses on mobile usability.

Building off the previous point, the search landscape is always changing and you’re always having to react to updates. 

The first ever-changing factor to deal with is Google’s algorithm updates. The search engines ranking factors are always changing and it’s robots are getting smarter all the time. 

Don’t forget – the algorithm’s goal is to show the most relevant and helpful information to searchers. 

The impact that can have on the search engine results page is huge.

With every algorithm update, Google is placing greater emphasis on a different factor. The most recent update has been focused on mobile usability. 

If you don’t have a long-term focus, you’ll struggle to optimise for these updates. 

The second factor that’s always changing is your competitors – and they can be fierce. 

There’s a never-ending list of websites online and there’s a good chance that a new website is entering your space.

The way your competitors leverage their keywords and on-site optimisation may change in an instant, so you have to be ready to react.

Building Authority Takes Time

The ultimate goal for any SEO is to build a site’s authority – that is the quality of a website in the eyes of search engines.

But what contributes to a site’s authority?

Google aren’t exactly clear about this, but experts across the industry point to two factors: 

  1. Quality of content
  2. Backlinks

The bad news?

There’s no shortcut to achieve either of these. 

Building your site’s authority takes time. It takes endless optimisations, hundreds of pieces of quality content and a number of credible backlinks from high-authority websites. 

SEO Is A Long-Term Game

Graph showing how different marketing tactics vary with traffic and time

We can have a greater impact on your website by optimising it for SEO on a regular basis.

The reasons we outlined above contribute to our decision to offer our SEO services on a monthly retainer basis. 

A website requires regular updates to keep up with Google. SEO implementation includes updating pages with keywords, writing and implementing meta descriptions, technical fixes, URL redirects, finding and fixing broken links, and much more. We also ensure content is added regularly, as Google expects sites to be up to date and updated regularly. 

Our goal for each and every client is to increase organic traffic to your website by 25% per quarter and, ultimately, we know that we can have a greater impact on your website by optimising it for SEO each and every month, rather than quick fixes.