Holz is an online shop selling doors and flooring. It also is a network of offline shops in five Ukrainian cities: Kyiv, Kharkiv, Dnipro, Odessa, and Rivne. The company offers a large selection of products, updates its assortment regularly, hires only highly skilled employees, works with the best Ukrainian and European manufacturers, and guarantees the high quality of its services.
The client that turned to us wanted to create a website that would be later promoted in organic search engine results. As the website didn’t exist at that time, we asked the client to provide all the information regarding the assortment of the future online shop.
The promotional strategy is a detailed plan of actions that is developed while taking the individual features of a particular promoting website into account. The approach is different for different niches.
The promotion of a website without creating a strategy first leads to ineffective budget spending, loss of time, and lack of the desired results.
We analyzed the competitor websites that made it to the Top of search engines. We based our analysis on the main search queries relevant to the niche.
We paid special attention to the following parameters:
The analysis showed that the competition in the niche is very high. Here are the key indicators for some categories of this niche.
The Top of search engine consisted of old websites with developed structure, big reference weight, and high trust rate.
Website’s trust rate is an indicator of search engines’ trust towards a website. This indicator significantly affects website’s position in search results and is assigned to the whole domain, not to the separate pages.
The trust rate is usually affected by many indicators, including the following: website’s age, website’s technical condition, its internal optimization (or its absence), and the quality of reference weight.
As the website wasn’t created yet, we knew that it wouldn’t have any history, trust, and reference weight.
Therefore, the first stage of the process was focused on:
Sounds simple, doesn’t it? Now let’s get into some details.
1) Website Structure Development
Website structure is a highly important tool for SEO. When one develops a structure, they have to meticulously analyze the positioning of every section in order to satisfy the users’ needs and take the search crawlers’ requirements into account. The website structure is based on a semantic core.
We’ve created a massive semantic core that consisted of queries relevant to the niche. We used different keyword research tools for that: Serpstat, Wordstat, Key Collector, Keyword Planner, and search tips.
Then we clustered the queries we collected and spread them over the landing pages, forming wide and convenient website structure. We also added filter pages to the website structure during that stage of the process. Such pages are a great option for driving some additional traffic to a website by low-frequency, middle-frequency, and high-frequency queries, assuming that the website optimization is implemented correctly.
2) Technical Optimization Requirements
We developed the requirements for a website’s administrative panel. For instance, we asked to make it possible to form a separate SEF URL for each page (section, blog, filter pages), to add content and metadata.
3) Website’s Test Version
The developers created the test version of a website, taking all our structure and technical optimization requirements into account.
4) Website Page Optimization
We ran a website page optimization that was based on the semantic core for the main page, section pages (categories, subcategories), and filter pages. We added relevant metadata and SEO optimized content.
5) Internal Linking
We implemented internal linking to spread statistical weight among website’s pages correctly: from category pages to filter pages, from product pages to other product pages.
We worked with the test version of a website first. We finished the main internal optimization in a few months and applied the changes from the test version to the main domain.
We immediately noticed a significant growth of organic traffic.
After we finished the main internal optimization, we moved to the next stage of the process — external website optimization.
External optimization is all about building the reference weight, i.e. receiving links to your website. Backlinks are one of the most important factors for search engines. They help increase website’s trust rate and its position in search results. They also drive more traffic.
How did we get the backlinks?
We built the reference gradually and evenly on purpose: if we purchased too many links, especially for a new website, it could lead to penalties from search engines.
During the first two months we used only non-anchor links (the ones that don’t have keywords in them) to build reference weight. We used brand’s name, words like «here», «there», «follow the link», and website’s URL as an anchor.
Using non-anchor links helps increase a website’s trust rate, assuming that you pick trusted sponsors for that. Such links minimize the possibility of being penalized by the search engines: they seem organic and are therefore considered the safest, especially for new projects.
Starting from the third month, we used anchor links and diluted links along with non-anchor one to build reference weight. We stuck to the following link proportion to create an organic link profile: 10% of the anchor links, 30% of diluted links, and 60% of non-anchor links. Such link proportion helps create the perfect link profile.
However, this wasn’t all. SEO optimization and improvement is a constant process. One has to improve a website all the time to get high and stable results.
What did we do?
1) Implemented Semantic Mapping for the Content
Why did we do that?
2) Moved the Website to the HTTPS Secure Protocol
Why did we do that?
Why wasn’t a website using HTTPS in the first place?
Initially, the HTTPS wasn’t a Google ranking factor. As soon as Google announced that it started using the HTTPS as a ranking factor, we’ve suggested moving the website.
3) Created the Blog Section
The Blog section allows:
We created a content-plan for this section after analyzing the users’ requests and the competitors’ blogs. Then we systematically (3-4 articles a month) filled the blog with unique, useful, and expert articles oriented at low-frequency, middle-frequency, and high-frequency queries.
All the content was created by experts. It offered valuable information for the users and matched the search engine requirements. This helped the website to get to Top 1-3 positions in the search engines by search requests that were relevant to the articles. Furthermore, this required no extra cost.
4) Implemented the Internal Linking for Internal Weight Transfer and User Retention
5) Implemented Video Marketing
YouTube has been the second most popular search engine in the world after Google since 2015. Now many people turn to YouTube, not Google to find the answers to their questions and to solve certain problems. Therefore, it isn’t surprising that video marketing has become one of the most powerful tools for online business promotion. Many companies use video to build an audience.
Knowing that, we decided to add video marketing to our overall promotion strategy. We developed a strategy for the promotion of a YouTube channel and created one for company’s brand. The client’s side filmed videos with tips on relevant high-frequency topics that could help the users to pick the products, install them, and take care of them. We optimized all the videos according to YouTube requirements, uploaded them on channel, and added to the promotion.
We integrated the videos in relevant articles in the Blog section, added them to category pages and product pages to hold the users’ attention.
Our team has been working on a project for one year and five months. During this time the traffic grew by 352,4% and the number of new users increased by 351,3%.
Keep in mind that we compare the results starting from the second month of our work, because we spent the first month on indexation process and the traffic was almost absent.
Traffic growth dynamic was positive almost the whole time, except for offseason periods for the niche. The activity of users’ search requests was significantly lower during the offseason.
The website took the Top 1-3 position in search engines by search queries relevant to Blog articles. This helped drive more traffic to the website.
Channel optimization and video promotion helped the channel make it to Top 1-3 in YouTube search by relevant search requests.
When it comes to SEO, the end result usually directly depends on how quickly the Terms of Reference are implemented. The slower a client implements the changes and completes the tasks, the less effective is the presence of a website in search results.
Unfortunately, this project had serious delays in implementation. Sometimes it took 3-4 months for the Terms of Reference to be implemented. Of course, it negatively affect the process of project’s development and slowed down the potential traffic growth.
Nonetheless, the results after more than one year of hard work were good: the organic traffic grew by 352,4%, the blog articles made it to the Top 1-3 in Google and YouTube.
We could only guess what the results could look like in case of full dedication. Friends, let’s work more productively in the future.