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SEO consistency: a comparison with walking my dog

If you’ve known me for any time at all, or been following me on social media, you’ll probably know I have a dog called Cocoa.

She’s a Beagle, and she is excellent.

This is her:

And much as I adore her, this dog knows her own mind. 

We had a heatwave here in Massachusetts a couple of weeks ago, and that meant that it was too hot during the day to walk Cocoa at her normal time. So we had to get up early when it was cooler in the day so she could get her walk in.

The trouble with Cocoa, however, is that she really isn’t a morning person.

And Cocoa hasn’t always been easy to walk on the leash. Beagles really like to stop and sniff absolutely everything.

Cocoa loves her morning naps, and only really starts to wake up and get her peak energy shortly after lunchtime. She’s been this way her whole life. It’s why we go walking after lunch – because that’s when she has her ‘go forward’ energy.

So this change in her routine of getting up early and going for her normal walk has required a bit of adjustment from Cocoa, and from me.

And as any dog owner (or perhaps parent) knows, sometimes you just can’t force things.

Sometimes, you have to give in and just go at the pace of the slowest person (or Beagle).

So I expected that our walks during those few days when the weather was very, very hot, would be, for me, often an exercise in patience.

I would simply have to switch off my expectation of what the walk should be, and accept that we would just move at Cocoa’s pace. 

And often, that was pretty slow. 

And other times, Cocoa surprised me with a merry trot!

So despite the heat, and despite the rude early morning wakeup call. every single day, Cocoa and I completed a 2-mile route. Both of us got some fresh air and exercise.

And that in itself is an achievement – a few years ago, walking her for 2 miles on leash wasn’t even a possibility.

It tells me that all the training I’ve put in with Cocoa over the years has paid off.

And as long as I exercise consistency and patience, we get the task accomplished. 

And this is a lot like SEO:

SEO consistency

Walking my dog

You establish authority, trust and respect by consistently publishing high quality content.

I trained Cocoa for years and years, to our trust is very well established. 

You listen to your audience and publish content that is useful and relevant to them.

I listened to Cocoa and adapted our walks to suit her.

Sometimes things work faster than you expect.

Sometimes, Cocoa wants to trot.

Other times, things don’t go as fast as you expect.

Other times, Cocoa wants to stop and sniff.

But no matter how quick or slow it takes, you do get the results you’re aiming for.

We still completed our 2-mile route, and Cocoa got some exercise. 

SEO tip of the week

So if you’re busily publishing content and waiting for the results to show, your reminder for this week is to keep up the good work.

All the work you’re putting in is building up authority, establishing you as an expert, not just in the eyes of Google, but more importantly, in the eyes of your audience.

Sometimes this will show itself in terms of quick wins like client enquiries, people signing up for your newsletter, or invitations to interviews.

Other times, it might just show up as a traffic increase on your website.

The least kind, least productive thing you can do for your business is to lose patience, or consistency in your process.

Imagine if I’d lost patience with Cocoa and told her off for being slow, or taken her home because I was in a hurry (both of which I’ve done in the past, I’m ashamed to say). 

Neither of us would have enjoyed our walk together, or got the exercise we both benefit from.

So lean on consistency with everything you have.

And that’s how SEO is like walking a dog. ☺


PS Bonus points this week if you’re able to work a story about your pet into your next blog, social media post, or newsletter. Let me know if you manage it! 


My name's Claire and I’m an SEO and content strategy expert. I help startups and ambitious businesses improve their content, so that customers can find your website in search, and so that when they do, they convert.


I’m a former startup CEO, and I’ve worked for some of the world’s biggest publishers (Penguin Random House, Oxford University Press), as well as training with Google's in-house SEO team. I even built a website to attract 45k in organic search visitors/month. Drop me a line if you need help of any kind with SEO and content.


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