If you think of your overall SEO as a snowball being pushed uphill, the larger the snowball is to begin with, the more snow will stick to it as it rolls. In addition, the following factors all have a big influence: The specific keyword phrases (search terms) that have been targeted. The overall competitiveness of your industry – how many players are there. Whether you are targeting a regional, national, or international market. How well ranking is monitored and the site tweaked over time for SEO improvement. The progress of your inbound linking campaign. Number of competitor sites achieving new ranking themselves.