The post includes real screen shots from Google Analytics (click any of them to enlarge) but the sites and data have been anonymized.
Target Your Target TermsRemember that post about building a page with perfect keyword targeting? SEOmoz wasn't kidding around.
A website that sells homewares had issues with site structure and on-page targeting. Their category level pages were at subdomains such as
Getting appropriate H1 tags onto each page was a quick job, improving title tag structure took a bit longer, clean & friendly URLs and internal links with appropriate anchor text were also added.
The site saw ranking improvements across the board, which brought new traffic through head, mid and long tail terms. Can you guess when the changes were made? ;-)
Getting sorted in Google LocalBefore getting into the nitty-gritty of ranking factors for Local Search, dead simple tactics, etc, it's important to get the basics right. A large chain of restaurants created a 'bulk upload' file with the correct data for each one of their locations. After uploading the file, they applied for it to be reviewed and 'whitelisted'. Local data that's been uploaded by the business owner and whitelisted is treated as authoritatively as locations that have been manually verified by postcard.
Despite various issues (Google's best practice guidelines still aren't quite the best solution in some cases) the traffic generated by visibility in Local Search has been significant and valuable. (The uploads were verified in late November when the traffic begins its steady rise.)
Architecture of ChangeA current affairs magazine wanted to get more from their website. Because of falling advertising revenue, the publication was at risk of being closed down. They'd seen some growth from SEO already, but wanted to prove that the website had greater value.
Although the site had a good brand and some great content, it suffered from similar problems to many news-type websites, including badly archived content, duplicate issues and a CMS that hampered keyword targeting or promoting individual articles. Recommendations were made to improve the site's architecture and migrate to the new structure.
The effect of the changes was immediate growth which took the organic traffic to 257% in three months. A month later, the magazine's owner explained that the falling revenue from print advertising meant that they couldn't continue to lose money publishing the mag, and closed it down.
Hook, Line, SinkerAn office cleaning company wanted to improve the profile of their site through SEO. Amongst other tactics, a member of staff spent a day writing a 'linkbait' post to publish on their blog. This generated huge amounts of traffic from social media sites (dwarfing their regular daily visitors) and was subsequently linked to from dozens of sites. This post, along with other content published on the site to attract links, helped the site grow in strength and authority, and it now ranks position 3 for 'office cleaning' in their country.
Paid In FullThis is SEOmoz, but I'd like to share a graph from a PPC colleague working on a site that sells scooters. They were initially bidding on very broad terms (scooter, scooters, buy a scooter, etc) but the campaign was adjusted to target more long tail terms, including descriptions, specifications, etc.
Over a period of around six weeks, the cost per click was reduced by 30% and the more targeted traffic converted increasingly well - this allowed the site owners to increase their ad budget and generated more sales than their paid search campaign ever had before. If you're new to SEOmoz and this post has inspired you to get involved in search marketing for your site, do browse the site for the PRO & free SEO guides and the SEO blog. If you're a regular, do share any stories you're particularly proud of in the comments
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