Marketing Services SEO: Growing Monthly Website Traffic By 3012% – Case Study

Estimated reading time: 8 minutes

Starting a new website from scratch? I’m going to share with you the steps my team at The Search Initiative took to grow a relatively new marketing service website’s monthly organic traffic by a whopping 3012%. From this case study, you will learn how to achieve these results by: The Challenge This client operates in the marketing industry within certain states within the US, specializing in several different marketing services. The client came to The Search Initiative with the aim of becoming an authoritative voice within their niche. This meant making sure that the content on the site, in particular, expressed topical authority or E-A-T (Expertise-Authority-Trust). Although keyword difficulty wasn’t going to be too high for the areas that the client covered, we knew that since we were pretty much starting from scratch, there was still some catching up to do in all aspects of SEO. The following is a step-by-step guide on how you can achieve incredible results with your SEO campaign. Focus On Content If you’ve ever had trouble ranking for a website focusing on a specific niche, or couldn’t rank a new product/review/location page on an authority site, it’s very likely that the root cause for this is a lack of topical authority (which is also sometimes referred to as topical relevance). This video goes into detail about how to build topical relevance with interlinking:  What do I mean by “topical authority”? For that, you need to understand that these days, Google ranks domains that have several pages targeting a specific topic. Whereas before, you could rank with just a single landing page. This means that if you’re trying to rank a page on a topic, Google wants to see additional supporting content on your site that links to it. By building a cluster of pages to support the main page you want to rank, you’re essentially establishing topical relevance in Google’s eyes. Topical authority is currently one of the hottest topics (for lack of a better word) in Search – and rightfully so. Working toward topical authority can help you expand your site’s keyword visibility by ranking for a broader net of search terms. Let me show you how… Building Topical Authority With Supporting Content In order to establish and build topical authority, you need to make sure that you’re answering as many questions as you can about your topic, new product, or if you have a local SEO site, a new location that you want to target. So, instead of purely focusing on the core landing pages of your website, you can build topical relevance by creating supplemental content. To find out more about Topical Authority, watch this interview with Koray Tugberk.  Here’s a step-by-step breakdown of what you’ll need to do: Step 1: Identify The Core Topic It’s likely that you’ll already have a topic in mind. For example, you may be launching a new product/service for your online business, or you may be branching out your local business to operate in a new city or region. Alternatively, like us, you may have a new site that targets a micro-niche. For example, you may have something like the following: If you already have a topic in mind, you can skip on to Step 2. But what if you don’t fall into either of the above scenarios and don’t know where to start? Let’s say you have a site that reviews turntables, and are looking for a new topic to cover. Here’s how you can find new topics and keywords to cover using ahrefs’ Keyword Explorer tool: 1. Search For Broad Keywords 2. Review The Parent Topics Looking at the parent topics, you may identify that you don’t have any articles about “pioneer turntables”. Step 2: Create Supporting Articles For The Chosen Topic Now that you have your chosen topic, you’ll want to create some supporting articles for it – I recommend around 4 articles to support your main landing page on the topic. To find relevant keywords for these supporting articles, use Ahrefs’ Keyword Explorer to: 1. Find Competitors for the Topic 2. Reverse Engineer Your Competitor’s Keywords Pick a primary keyword for your main landing page along with primary keywords for the supplemental articles too. Step 3: Add Contextual Links From Supplementary Articles to the Main Page This step is really important. Google follows links to discover new content to rank. Therefore, you need to add contextual links from all of your supplementary articles to your main article within the topic. Add your contextual links in the middle of the body of an article. Doing this will help Google see that your supporting article is being reinforced by your main article on that topic. When it comes to deciding what anchors to use for onsite links like this, you don’t have to be as careful as you would for off site link building. For example, here’s one way you may want to link to your main page from the four supporting articles: With this method, you’re essentially creating clusters of content that are topically related. This allows you to pass value from the smaller articles to the main content piece and, as a result, have a better chance of ranking that core page. User Intent A significant element of your content strategy should be focused on nailing the user intent (or search intent) of your pages. For example, if you search for “buy nintendo switch”, Google displays results that allow you to purchase the games console – which is what you’d expect. User intent is about making sure that your pages reflect what the searcher is looking for. Unsure about how to identify what kind of content you should include on your pages to address the search intent for the keyword you want to target? A simple search for your core keywords will tell you exactly what kind of content Google is rewarding for that term. For example, you can see below that for “best turntables”, all 10 of the top ranking pages are review/opinion-based articles. Doing this will help refine your content so that it satisfies the search intent of the keyword you want to target. On-Page Inventory   After you create a content plan and start executing it, don’t forget about the existing content you already have on the site. Every word matters, and your old content needs to be held to the same standard. Therefore, you should also perform an on-page inventory on the core landing pages of your site. Page Titles Your page titles should be engaging, descriptive, not too long (max 65 characters) and include your primary keyword as close to the beginning as possible. Avoid page titles like this: Long Sleeve Sweatshirts For Men & Short Sleeve Sweatshirts For Men | It’s too long and repetitive. Aim for page titles like this: Buy Long & Short Sleeve Sweatshirts For Men | All Sizes On Sale Headings Headings help users quickly find what they’re looking for, as well as help search engines understand the layout and structure of your content. Here are some actionable steps you should take when optimizing your headings: Meta Descriptions Meta descriptions won’t help your website rank but should still be optimized as they are displayed within the search results. A well written meta description can be the deciding factor on whether a user clicks through to your site or not. URLs One of the first things that Google mentions in its SEO Starter Kit is URLs. Establishing E-A-T (Expertise-Authority-Trust) Google measures the perceived expertise, authority and trustworthiness of a site by looking at certain signals such as the characteristics of the content in addition to other ranking signals like links. Establishing E-A-T becomes increasingly important for YMYL (Your Money Your Life) websites where the information or services provided on a site may have a direct impact on a visitor’s wellbeing. For example, in our case, the client wanted to establish E-A-T within the marketing landscape. This means that the client’s potential customers (and Google for that matter) would expect the content on the website to be written by a marketing expert from a well-established and respected agency. Let’s break this down a little further. Expertise is achieved by the writer or creator of the content expressing a higher level of knowledge about the subject at hand. Authority is achieved if the content is created by an established or well-respected agency as opposed to a student or a lesser-known/experienced organization. Trust is achieved through ensuring that the content is factually correct or can be backed up by other sources to prove its credibility. Let’s take a look at how you can demonstrate E-A-T on your site: In fact, it’s specifically mentioned in Google’s Quality Raters Guidelines. For example, if you have a website that reviews turntables, you’re going to want to ensure that you’re reviewing and talking about the latest models. Therefore, you want to avoid having articles like “Top 10 Turntables Under $500 for 2020”, as Google and your readers will Read More Read More

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