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					Keyword
Rich
12 Business Success Stories
in Search Engine Marketing




                              www.wordtracker.com
  Contents

  Introduction                                                                                                           3

  Case Studies                                                                                                       5

         Leading Las Vegas: How keyword insight drives a serial entrepreneur                                             5

         MumsTheWord.com: Keyword strategy inspires niche business                                                       9

         TrustyGuides.com uses keywords as its market research                                                       13

         Park Seed: Sowing the seeds of success on the internet                                                      18

         Business Technology Radio:
         Building a radio show audience one keyword at a time                                                       23

         The Weather Channel® creates a storm with web content                                                       27

         Savvy Vegetarian: 50 first page results on Google                                                           33

         Travelntelligence.com solves a problem: Attracting customers                                               38

         John Pye auctioneers uses keywords for link building                                                       43

         iStylista combines blogging with keyword research to double sales in four months                           48

         How Hearst magazines increased website traffic by 150%
         with Wordtracker’s keywords tool                                                                           52

         Spotty Gift Boxes increased traffic 228% by using carefully researched keywords                             57

         Additional Information                                                                                     62




Wordtracker.com                               Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 2



                                                                   Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | Introduction




                       12 keyword success stories
                       Welcome to Keyword Rich. We wrote this book to
                       help you in two ways:

                       1. To show you that many different types of business can succeed
                       online, no matter what their size or experience. We interviewed each of 12
                       entrepreneurs at length and they’ve shared what they learned. Their stories will inspire
                       you.

                       2. To let you learn from their experiences – and mistakes: so that you
                       can achieve even better results and avoid costly errors.

                       You must learn by doing. Keyword research is not a one-off task. People who succeed
                       know that they must keep working at their business, trying new things, and building
                       on their successes. They know that keyword research is an essential business task that
                       brings you closer to your customers.

                       Follow their example and you’ll already be ahead of your competitors.

                       In the spirit of online success.

                       Mike and Andy Mindel
                       Wordtracker

                       PS All 12 of those businesses have one thing in common: Wordtracker’s Keywords
                       tool. They’ve all used it to find the keywords their customers use. You can get
                       a month’s access for just $59, or take a 7-day free trial. Try the tool today and
                       we’ll send you seven videos showing you how to use it.




Wordtracker.com                              Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 3



                                                                  Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | Wordtracker E-books



                      Also published by Wordtracker:

                                                Writing Kick-Ass Website Sales Copy
                                                Copywriting guru Nick Usborne reveals his secrets for
                                                writing sales-exploding website copy.


                                                Find out more at:
                                                http://www.wordtracker.com/ebooks/
                                                kick-ass-web-copy/




                                                Business Blogging –
                                                50 steps to building traffic and sales
                                                A real world guide to creating, writing and promoting
                                                a successful blog.


                                                Find out more at:
                                                http://www.wordtracker.com/ebooks/
                                                business-blogging-book/




                                                50 Kick-Ass Keyword Strategies
                                                Learn 50 simple, smart and speedy ways to attract
                                                more customers online.


                                                Find out more at:
                                                http://www.wordtracker.com/ebooks/kick-ass




Wordtracker.com                     Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 4



                                                         Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Leading Las Vegas: How
keyword insight drives
a serial entrepreneur
by Neil Davidson


Keyword research insight is now being used by many
entrepreneurs. Clarke Walton, the owner of several
internet-based businesses in Las Vegas, is one of these
trailblazers, using it to help him in different ways every day.




Wordtracker.com                 Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 5



                                                     Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | myTrademarkRegistration.com



                     Clarke uses Wordtracker’s Keywords tool for:


                     • Researching consumer behavior, particularly for new website ideas.

                     • Deciding on the best business ideas and how much resource should
                     be allocated to them.

                     • Choosing business and domain names.

                     • As a brainstorming tool.

                     The potential of keyword research data as a business research tool became obvious to
                     Clarke when he was first introduced to it as an executive at a search engine marketing
                     firm. Everyone can benefit from using it this way, as he explains.

                     “I went from being a search engine optimization (SEO) expert to running website
                     startups and then to starting my own law firm. I’ve used Wordtracker’s Keywords tool
                     to help in my decision making all along the way. It’s a great SEO tool, but it’s much
                     more than that, because it tells you what your customers are thinking, and what they
                     want from you.”



                     Keyword research helps Clarke manage finite
                     business resources
                     Clarke now uses keyword research data to help him allocate resources within the law
                     firm he started, the Walton Law Firm – www.waltonweblaw.com. Clarke attributes
                     much of its success to the diligent use of keyword data.

                     “I work out the niches in my business, the areas that potential clients are asking
                     questions about, but that no one is answering. It was the foundation for the services
                     I offered my clients, as well as the content on my website. With this approach,
                     I’ve seen my traffic rise by over 300% over the last year, along with a phenomenal
                     rise in revenue.”

                     As well as helping Clarke spot potential revenue streams for his law firm, he’s also
                     used keyword data to help him with his other startups.

                     “I had three ideas for new legal services that I could offer online, and I was trying to
                     select the one with the greatest potential. I used keyword data to gauge the potential
                     success of each business. One was based around copyright registration, another



Wordtracker.com                           Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 6



                                                               Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | myTrademarkRegistration.com



                     DMCA complaints, and the last was an idea for a trademark registration service.
                     Keyword research helped me decide on the trademark registration business.
                     The new trademark business needed a name, so I turned to Wordtracker’s Keywords
                     tool for help. I looked at terms like: ‘trademark registration’, ‘register trademark’ and
                     ‘file trademark.’ Based on my Wordtracker research, the most popular search was for
                     the keyword ‘trademark registration’, and so I decided to name the business www.
                     myTrademarkRegistration.com.



                     No more gambling
                     Back in 2002, before founding his law practice, Clarke developed his own websites,
                     including allvegaspoker.com; a Las Vegas poker room information site for those
                     planning a visit.

                     “At that time, I was using keyword research data to help me with all the usual web
                     stuff, but I also started to use it to try and really understand my consumers. For
                     example, I wanted to know which Vegas poker rooms they wanted me to review, not
                     just which ones had the biggest names. I looked at which poker rooms people were
                     searching for, and I discovered that many people wanted to know about the smaller
                     poker rooms, such as Excalibur, which I visited and wrote about. It’s an approach I still
                     use today for the website.”

                     Clarke then broadened how he used the Keywords tool even further, beyond SEO and
                     content decisions. Brainstorming for new business ideas is a good example.

                     “Brainstorming still needs to be focused. You have to decide what areas of your
                     business you’re going to give that time to. I invest time looking at keyword data
                     beforehand and go into a session clear about what the consumer wants us to be
                     thinking about, where we need new ideas. In business there’s always some guesswork,
                     but keyword insights help a lot. It sends you down the right track.”



                     Keyword research is doing the business for Clarke Walton
                     Clarke’s established businesses are doing well and he has more ideas in the pipeline.
                     But in one way his career has gone full circle, as he explains.

                     “My law firm’s clients are all website owners. They often choose to work with me
                     because of my internet marketing experience. I get asked as many internet marketing
                     questions as legal questions. I’m always happy to give them good advice, but one of
                     the things I tell them is to make sure that they use keyword insights for their business,
                     and not just as an SEO tool.”

                     Video interview with Clark Walton, Walton Web Law.

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                                                               Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | myTrademarkRegistration.com




                     Key Points

                     • Wordtracker tells you what your customers are thinking, and what they want from
                     you.

                     • I’ve seen my traffic rise by over 300% over the last year, along with a phenomenal
                     rise in revenue.

                     • I had three ideas for new legal services that I could offer online, and I was trying to
                     select the one with the greatest potential. I used keyword data to gauge the potential
                     success of each business.




Wordtracker.com                            Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 8



                                                                Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
MumsTheWord.com:
Keyword strategy inspires
niche business
by Neil Davidson


Finding a niche is often the key to online success. Andrew
Smith thought that most online baby stores seemed to
ignore the needs of mothers. So, he focuses his keyword
strategy on the needs of mums, not just babies.




Wordtracker.com               Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 9



                                                   Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | MumsTheWord.com



                    Andrew Smith always wanted to set up an internet based business but his only
                    problem was in deciding what that business should be. Then Mother Nature gave
                    him a helping hand, as Andrew explains.

                    “I had been waiting for an idea. My friends were at the age of thinking about starting
                    families, and a few of them announced they were pregnant. Baby conversations were
                    common, and a business based on pregnancy and babies seemed obvious. It was a
                    clear niche, but I needed to find a strong position within it.”

                    When Andrew looked at the competition, he saw that it catered for the baby’s needs
                    and forgot about mum. He decided that his website would focus on the mums first.



                    Keyword insights soon became a key part of doing business
                    From day one, Andrew focused on making his website www.mumstheword.com
                    visible. He understood the importance of search engine optimization (SEO), but the
                    more work he did with keyword research data the more he saw that it could help him
                    with more than just search engine visibility.

                    “I started thinking about its wider implications for the business. It wasn’t just
                    telling me the best words and phrases for SEO; it was telling me what my potential
                    customers were thinking, and what their unfulfilled needs were.”

                    One example was around the area of ‘baby shower gifts.’ It’s one of the most popular
                    search terms, but one that Andrew admits he would never have thought of it without
                    keyword research data.

                    “It kept coming up in my results, so I couldn’t ignore it. I soon came up with baby
                    shower offers for customers and it’s still one of our best selling product ranges, and a
                    big driver of the business’s profitability. That’s been the power of keyword research, in
                    adding value to other areas of my business, like new product development.”



                    Keyword insights bring the baby sector to life
                    No one new to the mother and baby market could hope to equal Andrew’s level of
                    knowledge, but it’s still fascinating to see what consumer insights an examination of
                    keyword research data reveals:


                    A high number of searches for ‘baby gift vouchers’
                    The most obvious conclusion is the desire for vouchers and the need to offer them
                    within a baby business, but it could reveal more than this. If consumers are searching



Wordtracker.com                          Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 10



                                                              Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | MumsTheWord.com



                    for vouchers it’s probably because they don’t have the knowledge to decide what to
                    buy, or even how to deal with the uncertainty of not knowing the gender of the baby.

                    Businesses could think about meeting these needs by offering more than gift
                    vouchers - advice on the most popular and highest-rated purchases, a clear returns
                    policy and help in guiding purchase decisions, e.g. what to choose if you do or don’t
                    know the baby’s gender.


                    Searches around the area of natural baby products
                    There are a high number of search terms based around ‘organic’ and ‘all natural’, in
                    terms of advice and products. Not only could a business offer advice in this area, it
                    could also rate products against these criteria and offer it as a way to choose a gift.


                    The need for general information, reassurance and safe products
                    Few consumer groups want more information and reassurance than first-time
                    mothers, for obvious reasons, and this seems to be proven by high-ranking search
                    terms such as ‘consumer reports baby products’, ‘parent-tested baby products’ and
                    ‘baby safety products.’

                    A mother and baby-focused business could capitalize on this by recognizing and
                    dealing with this audience as being different to second or third-time mothers, as well
                    as offering relevant products and gifts, e.g. a first-time mother’s starter kit.



                    Keyword research data will continue to add more
                    value to the business
                    Business is good for Andrew, with turnover up 37% year-on-year, and he attributes
                    much of that growth to keyword insights. Keyword research is already doing the
                    business for Mum’s The Word, in terms of general SEO, informing copy decisions for
                    the website, getting maximum value from paid-for search terms and helping in new
                    product development, but Andrew agrees that there is potential for most businesses
                    to get more out of keyword research.

                    “It makes you think more laterally than you would if you thought through issues
                    without its stimulus and insight, and that’s what all businesses desperately need if
                    they’re going to stand out from the competition. We’re developing a new version of
                    the website and the lessons we have learned from keyword data will enhance this.
                    But thinking about the wider business, I can see other uses in the future, such as using
                    the keyword insights to drive brainstorming and idea-generating sessions. Of course,
                    using keyword research to improve SEO is crucial for an internet based business, but
                    it’s only part of the equation when it comes to making the most of the insights
                    it offers.”


Wordtracker.com                          Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 11



                                                              Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | MumsTheWord.com




                    Key Points

                    • Taking a particular point of view is important in establishing a niche business.
                    MumsTheWord.com spotted that the needs of a new mum were often overlooked and
                    built their online business around the idea of putting that right.

                    • Keyword insights can drive product development. Basing a product or a product
                    group around a core set of popular keywords can lay the foundations for long term
                    profitability.

                    • MumsTheWord.com was clever to recognize that because potential customers
                    were searching for ‘vouchers’, they often didn’t have enough knowledge to make an
                    informed purchase decision – so he created content educating them.




Wordtracker.com                         Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 12



                                                             Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
TrustyGuides.com
uses keywords as its
market research
by Neil Davidson


In 2004, Christopher Cummings had a big idea for a new
website. Then he realized that success depended on much
more than a big idea. And it was something new to him:
the intelligent use of keyword research data.




Wordtracker.com            Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 13



                                                Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | TrustyGuides



                      The idea behind creating TrustyGuides was to offer an alternative information source
                      on all sorts of subjects on the internet, such as careers, personal finance, parenting
                      and education. But Christopher Cummings says that there was more to this alternative
                      than just great content.

                      “I wanted to differentiate our content through ease of use and effectiveness as well.
                      Our guides had to be easy to navigate and clearly structured, unlike much of our
                      competition. There weren’t going to be any of the other usual annoyances either,
                      like pop-ups, flash animations and all the other things that can ruin a user’s internet
                      experience. The thinking was spot-on, but the missing part of the jigsaw was keyword
                      research data.”

                      TrustyGuides has come a long way since then. It’s now a successful business that is
                      immersed in keyword research data. Four key learnings on search engine optimization
                      (SEO) contributed to the business’s success:


                      1. A great idea on the internet can die if it’s not supported by a robust
                      SEO strategy, but with one it can thrive.

                      2. For new websites, the use of less popular keyphrases is more
                      effective than using popular keywords, as the latter are already owned by the
                      more established competition.


                      3. The keyword data supplied by Wordtracker’s Keywords tool can take
                      the place of a conventional market research department, adding value to
                      creative thinking, as well as adding objectivity to final decisions.


                      4. The world of SEO is constantly changing, never static. This requires
                      constant re-checking and refining of content against the latest keyword research
                      results.



                      TrustyGuides enters the world of keyword research data
                      Christopher Cummings remembers that it was at a meeting with the owner of a
                      content management software company that he discovered this part of the jigsaw.

                      “He told me how important the right keywords would be for any content-focused
                      website. He said that at least 70% of web users start their internet session by using
                      a search engine. I was astonished by the figure. Even if the figure was really closer
                      to 50% it still had big implications for my business. He didn’t need to make his next




Wordtracker.com                            Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 14



                                                                 Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | TrustyGuides



                      point, that any website has to rank highly in search engine results, or nobody will come
                      to it. I was already thinking it.”

                      Christopher happily admits to being a complete novice in the world of SEO at that
                      time. That was something that would soon change.

                      “I bought a range of SEO books and read up on everything there was to know on the
                      subject. It reinforced what I had been told, that the choice of keywords could decide
                      the success or failure of TrustyGuides. I invested in one of the keyword research data
                      products mentioned again and again in the texts, Wordtracker’s Keywords tool.”



                      Wordtracker becomes TrustyGuides’ marketing
                      research department
                      TrustyGuides was launched in 2005, but at that time Christopher Cummings still could
                      never have predicted how important the Keywords tool would become to his business.

                      “Within the space of a year, it went from being something that I knew almost nothing
                      about to being at the heart of every decision we made in the business. It became
                      our market research department. We now have a clear development process for
                      developing content, and Wordtracker is always part of that process.”

                      In its simplest form, TrustyGuides develops content through four steps:


                      1. The team starts the content creation process by brainstorming
                      potential topics, based on what they know about their audience, what’s
                      contemporary and what they have learned from keyword research previously.


                      2. They review the list and agree what ideas they think are worth
                      developing, based on what they know about their typical readers.

                      3. They then investigate what topics will also bring in advertising
                      revenue as well as interest readers, and use that to inform their selections.

                      4. The Keywords tool helps them make the final decision on which
                      topics are to be developed, based on which topics perform well on searches.

                      5. Using the Keywords tool, they begin the work on finding keyphrases
                      within the chosen subject areas, to make sure that they get a high search-
                      engine ranking.



Wordtracker.com                           Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 15



                                                                Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | TrustyGuides



                      Keyphrases are more important than keywords
                      As the team tried out different SEO strategies they learned what worked and what
                      didn’t. Keyphrases are now more important than keywords for Trusty Guides, as
                      Christopher Cummings explains.

                      “For me, this was the most important learning since we started working this way. It’s
                      something that other new websites need to consider. Your competition may have been
                      around for years, and, if they’re any good, they are search engine optimized and have
                      thousands of inbound links. How are you going to win against that sort of competition,
                      with their 100% focus on a keyword that you want to own? For TrustyGuides, success
                      has been based on owning the keyword phrases that have high scores but that no one
                      else has taken complete ownership of yet. It’s far more effective to be number three in
                      a search for a reasonably popular keyphrase than to be number 3,000 in a search for
                      the most popular keyword.”

                      When it comes to TrustyGuides advice on parenting, the area of potty training is a good
                      example. When the team looked at the search term ‘potty training’, they decided it
                      wasn’t a term worth fighting for ownership of, since so many established websites
                      owned it already. But when they looked at the area of potty training they discovered
                      many other interesting variations on the term. One was ‘potty training chart’, and
                      though they decided that the competition for that was too tough, they saw an
                      opportunity with ‘printable potty training chart’. TrustyGuides decided to focus on
                      this term, and it has been a success for them.

                      This approach has become a successful formula and one that adds a new dimension
                      to the content development process. But, as Christopher Cummings says, Wordtracker
                      can perform an important role at many development stages.

                      “Keyword research data can be a springboard to creative thinking, as it tells you what
                      your audience is thinking, but it also adds objectivity to any decisions made, just as any
                      market research would, because its based on the behavior of your target audience. You
                      can’t get any more solid research than data based on actual behavior, so you know that
                      you can trust it 100%.”



                      Finding the right content is a constant quest for Trusty
                      Guides
                      TrustyGuides has learnt to avoid the mistakes others make, creating and optimizing
                      content and then forgetting about it. Keyword research data results are constantly
                      changing, because users’ search behavior is also constantly changing. It means that
                      no piece of content is guaranteed success, or may not need changing, even when it



Wordtracker.com                            Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 16



                                                                Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | TrustyGuides



                      has been successful at first. It’s something that Christopher Cummings feels strongly
                      about.

                      “Finding that a keyword or keyphrase is popular is only the first step. But even once
                      the keywords are chosen, a page is search engine optimized and the site is live, the job
                      is only half done. We need to check that what we have done works, and tweak or even
                      re-work pages that don’t perform as well as we wanted them to.”

                      It’s this constant vigilance that has made TrustyGuides the success that it is. It is also,
                      Christopher Cummings believes, a key part of their hoped-for success in the future.

                      “Of course, we will continue to rely on Wordtracker’s Keywords tool for developing new
                      subject areas and new pages, but we will also get better and better at measuring the
                      success of content and changing underperforming pages. Wordtracker will also play
                      an essential role in helping us to do that.”




                      Key Points

                      • A great idea on the internet can die if it’s not supported by a robust SEO strategy,
                      but with one it can thrive.

                      • For new websites, the use of less popular keyphrases is more effective than using
                      popular keywords, as these are already owned by the more established competition.

                      • The keyword data supplied by Wordtracker can take the place of a conventional
                      market research department, adding value to creative thinking, as well as adding
                      objectivity to final decisions.

                      • The world of SEO is constantly changing, never static. This requires constant re-
                      checking and refining of content against the latest keyword research results.




Wordtracker.com                             Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 17



                                                                 Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Park Seed: Sowing
the seeds of success
on the internet
by Neil Davidson


Park Seed is a multi million dollar gardening business that
had built its incredible success on print-based catalogs.
So starting business on the internet seemed like a leap
into the unknown. But there was a link between these
different worlds...




Wordtracker.com              Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 18



                                                  Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | Park Seed



                         The link between print and online marketing went back all the way back to the
                         company’s founder, George Watt Park.

                         Park started the company 140 years ago and built the business from nothing, through
                         investing in advertising and creating relevant content for his customer catalogs. The
                         quality of content in the catalogs was crucial, just as it is now for the internet. Walt
                         Yates, search engine marketing (SEM) Manager at Park Seed, explains the link.

                         “The more we immerse ourselves in the internet, the more we see that the founding
                         principles of Park Seed still apply. I believe that George W Park would be proud of the
                         way we’re doing business on the internet today. We’ve adapted many of the things that
                         made the original seed catalog such a success, but the fundamentals still apply.”

                         For Park Seed, success on the internet is based on four key principles:


                         • High quality content is as important on the internet as it has always
                         been for their print catalogs.

                         • Content decisions have to be driven by a true understanding of the
                         business’s different audiences.

                         • This understanding has to be based on hard data, like keyword
                         research data, not guesswork.

                         • Content has to change to reflect the ever-changing needs of
                         their customers.


                         Internet success was built on Park Seed’s foundations as a
                         seed catalog company.
                         Walt Yates believes that the development of successful internet strategies is made
                         easier by the quality of data used in planning and analysis, most of it unavailable for
                         conventional marketing channels. Keyword research data helped them realize the true
                         nature of their potential internet business on the internet.

                         “We worked with the Wordtracker keyword research data before we started any internet
                         marketing activities. Thanks to that data, we understood our audiences, what content
                         they needed and how their needs were changing over time.”

                         The search term ‘seeds’ was the obvious place to start but the results were



Wordtracker.com                               Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 19



                                                                   Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | Park Seed



                         disappointing. The challenge was to separate potential buyers from other internet
                         researchers. They discovered that people who were searching for ‘seed catalogs’ were
                         much more likely to buy than those just searching for ‘seeds’.

                         It was a useful lesson in developing their internet strategy, as Walt Yates explains.

                         “This was our ‘aha’ moment. It reminded us that things hadn’t really changed for our
                         core audience when they used the internet. They were still looking for the online
                         equivalent of seed catalogs, and Park Seed was still a seed catalog company. But
                         when people searched using ‘seed catalogs’ they didn’t find us, they found our
                         competitors. We changed our content to deal with this right away. Now, our core
                         audience finds us when they go onto the internet, not our competition.”

                         Park Seed also did more work to attract the internet seed catalog audience, and not
                         irrelevant searchers. The search term ‘Echinacea’ was a good example. The keyword
                         data revealed a split between those searching for vitamin supplements and those
                         searching for the plant. Park Seed resolved this by using the terms ‘Echinacea plant’,
                         ‘Echinacea flowers’ and ‘cone flower’, its common name, in their content.



                         Making use of misspellings
                         Wordtracker also helped Park Seed connect with younger audiences, most of them
                         taking their first steps into the world of gardening. The big challenge was to get Park
                         Seed top of their particular searches, which were often different to older gardeners,
                         and sometimes didn’t seem to make any sense. Even the most seasoned gardeners
                         struggle to spell different common and botanical plant names, especially as
                         horticulture experts themselves often disagreed about spellings. So, what chance
                         did new gardeners have? The plant name ‘Crepe myrtle’ is a good example, as
                         Wordtracker’s search numbers reveal:


                         •   Crepe myrtle - 206

                         •   Crape myrtle - 38

                         •   Crapemyrtle - 53

                         •   Crepemyrtle - 0

                         Crepemyrtle had zero searches, even though it is the spelling that many horticulturists
                         believe to be the correct spelling. Park Seed decided that the copy on their website




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                                                                   Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | Park Seed



                         had to recognize the debate on spelling, for this and for other plants. They used
                         numerous different spellings of plant names, correct and incorrect, so that all of their
                         potential customers would find them. Walt Yates believes that other businesses on
                         the internet should think more about incorrect, regional and vernacular spellings.

                         “You would never turn away a customer because he turned up at your store and
                         mispronounced the name of one of your products or got the spelling wrong, so why
                         do it online? That’s what you’re doing when you ignore customers who use incorrect
                         spellings in their searches. You need to be creative and make sure that your copy
                         incorporates these so-called mistakes, maybe even have some fun with it!”.



                         Understanding seasonal factors and trends could add
                         to sales
                         At the end of 2005, Park Seed had great success in using the search terms ‘gardening
                         gift certificates’ and ‘gardening gift cards’, driving strong sales during the normally
                         stagnant month of November. Wordtracker’s data revealed that a large number of
                         searchers were looking for ‘gift cards’ as well as ‘gift certificates’, which drove the
                         dual focus of the search engine optimization (SEO) push. Of course, some of the
                         thinking behind this strategy was based on an understanding of the seasonal nature
                         of the business, but further insights from Wordtracker’s Keywords tool told the Park
                         Seed team when it was time to change their content and SEO strategy, as Walt Yates
                         explains.

                         “The Wordtracker numbers told us when the business for gift certificates was starting
                         to die away, a week before Christmas, and when it was time to change our strategy,
                         towards spring planting. It’s a good example of why businesses have to constantly
                         review and renew their content, based on what the keyword research data is telling
                         them. That way, businesses keep search engine traffic and sales high. Those that don’t
                         do this will lose their market share.



                         Keyword research data is a key building block for
                         Park Seed’s future internet strategy
                         The future of business on the internet for Park Seed looks good, thanks to the team’s
                         dedication and constant vigilance. The intelligent use of keyword research data is now
                         a required step for any and all web promotions.

                         Its internet business is still growing, as an analysis of a recent 12 month period shows:


                         • Natural search engine revenue up by 42%


Wordtracker.com                               Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 21



                                                                   Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | Park Seed



                         • Pay per click revenue up by 85%

                         But no one in Park Seed takes success for granted. As Walt Yates says, its approach to
                         the internet owes a lot to George W Park’s way of doing business.

                         “His first priority was his customers’ gardening pleasure, and that’s still our guiding
                         principle today. I like to think that we have brought George W Park’s restlessness and
                         thirst for greater customer understanding into everything we do on the internet today.
                         Wordtracker is a vital part of that, a required tool for our internet strategy.”




                         Key Points

                         • High quality content is as important on the internet as it has always been for
                         their print catalogs.
                         • Content decisions have to be driven by true understanding of the business’s
                         different audiences.
                         • This understanding has to be based on hard data, like keyword research data,
                         not guesswork.
                         • Content has to change to reflect the ever-changing needs of their customers.




Wordtracker.com                              Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 22



                                                                   Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Business Technology Radio:
Building a radio show audience
one keyword at a time
by Brent Leary


The majority of small businesses are not high-flying
tech companies or web-savvy start ups. They’re largely
traditional companies in low tech industries. And that’s
the audience for Brent Leary and Michael Thomas’s
radio show, Technology for Business Sake. They used
keyword research to help them find listeners.




Wordtracker.com              Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 23



                                                   Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | Technology For Business Sake



                      It is really hard for me to believe that for the past 52 weeks I’ve said the words
                      “Welcome to another edition of Technology For Business Sake (TFBS)”. TFBS is a
                      weekly hour long radio show on the first 24 hour business talk radio station in Atlanta
                      Ga. I can honestly say I had no idea of what my co-host Michael Thomas and I were
                      getting into when we discussed the idea of a radio show aimed at helping small and
                      mid-size businesses (SMBs) understand all the things going on in technology didn’t
                      have a clue as to how it would be received.



                      A new type of radio
                      There were (and are) some well known shows that focus on consumer technology and
                      target hardcore geeks, but we wanted to focus on entrepreneurs and small business
                      owners. Plus we weren’t going to focus solely on internet entrepreneurs, but on
                      traditional mainstream small business people and those not terribly savvy when it
                      comes to using today’s technology. And contrary to popular demand, the majority of
                      small businesses are not high-flying tech companies or web-savvy start ups. They are
                      “traditionalists” - companies participating in low-tech industries that don’t spark the
                      interest of the media. Even though their core businesses may be low-tech, that doesn’t
                      mean they would not benefit from deploying technology to grow.

                      As you can probably imagine, there were a number of things we needed to do to get
                      the show off the ground. Some were pretty obvious, like coming up with a name,
                      choosing a format for the show, lining up guests, and getting used to talking on air.
                      And because it was radio, we had to make the show easy to listen to by having some
                      fun with the guests and with each other, as we all know great information presented in
                      the wrong way won’t make anyone want to listen to us for long. So our idea was to have
                      conversations on topics of interest to SMBs, with people they want to hear from, in a
                      way that makes it fun to listen to.



                      Taking radio beyond Atlanta and onto the web
                      Before we went online we were only on air in Atlanta. But the people we interviewed
                      were well known and the topics we covered were universal. We talked email marketing
                      with Constant Contact CEO Gail Goodman, search engine optimization with Aaron
                      Wall, or Wikinomics with author Don Tapscott. So we decided to re-purpose the shows
                      as a podcast so people could listen to them on the web, or download them to their
                      iPods.
                       The first thing we needed to do was to come up with a domain name that would be
                      easy to remember, and also bring some search traffic our way. After doing some
                      keyword research we settled on BusinessTechnologyRadio.com. It’s a little long, but
                      it contains some important terms that we thought would help us generate some hits



Wordtracker.com                           Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 24



                                                                Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | Technology For Business Sake



                      to the site. We also wanted to include a few strategic words in the title of the site’s
                      homepage that we couldn’t fit in the domain name, so we included “online small
                      business radio podcast” there to help give us more opportunities to pick up some
                      targeted search traffic.



                      Creating pages
                      Keyword research also played an important role in creating url text for the show pages
                      when we were ready to post a new show. Having the right words in the url really paid
                      off as show pages began showing up in relevant searches within a week. The other
                      thing that helped move us up the results list was taking time to write thoughtful show
                      summaries emphasizing strategic words for each page we put out.

                      Writing descriptive show summaries proved important when putting together the RSS
                      feed for the show podcast. Although it was critically important for us to have a solid
                      website for the show, the majority of podcasts are downloaded from iTunes. These
                      folks probably wouldn’t have found our site on their own, so we had to make sure our
                      descriptions and tags caught the attention of people who’d be interested in our kind of
                      content. In fact we even tag the audio files with keywords so that people can find the
                      mp3s without having to visit the show site. And we paid attention to how other people
                      tagged links to our shows on sites like Del.icio.us and Digg.



                      Finding guests small businesses want to listen to
                      But I think the most interesting way keyword research has added to the show is in how
                      it aids us in finding interesting guests for our growing audience. For example, when we
                      were thinking about doing a show on outsourcing IT projects, we decided to approach
                      Elance.com CEO Fabio Rosati because there were a good number of searches for
                      both Elance and Fabio. After talking to him we thought he’d make for an interesting
                      interview and things worked out great. We followed that same method a number of
                      times and have had great results to show for it. In fact one of the extra benefits coming
                      from this approach is a number of high quality links back from people who have been
                      on the show. So in addition to getting great guests on with us, we also start showing
                      up in search results in some important phrases, and pick up quality links that bring us
                      quality traffic.

                      It really paid off for us to take time up front to figure out what small biz types were
                      interested in, who they wanted to hear from, and what they searched on when they
                      were looking for information on the web. It helped us be in the top 30 search results
                      in Google, Yahoo! and others for terms like ‘business radio’, ‘small business radio’
                      and a host of others. And these terms have been a big factor in our little show being



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                                                                 Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | Technology For Business Sake



                      downloaded over 3,000 times last month.

                      So the radio show that started as an on-air lab experiment took the on-ramp to the
                      web. And what was supposed to be a 13 week trial on Atlanta radio has turned into 52
                      weeks (and counting) of programming that seems to be catching on in places like the
                      UK…and Italy… and India… and New Zealand. Oh yeah and in Atlanta, GA.




Wordtracker.com                          Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 26



                                                               Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
                                                                         ®
The Weather Channel
creates a storm with
web content
by Rachelle Money


Weather.com has over 300 million visitors a month.
They all want to know how the weather is going to affect
them. Whether you want information on how to keep your
pets cool in a heatwave, drive safely when the roads are icy,
or find marine forecasts, Weather.com has got it covered.




Wordtracker.com               Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 27



                                                    Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | weather.com



                      There are 15 main content areas on the site, each with its own product manager who
                      have essential keyword research at their fingertips. We talked to search marketing
                      manager, Derek Fulford about his operation.

                      The first thing most of us do in the morning is open our curtains and look up to the
                      skies. Weather dictates a lot of what we do, from the little things like what clothes
                      to wear or what the weather is going to be like at a football match, to those bigger
                      decisions like where to go on vacation, or which month to have your wedding.

                      Derek Fulford, search marketing manager of weather.com, says he has worked for
                      three years on “getting into the mindset” of those who search for weather-related
                      topics. “What is the motivation of the user? How specific is the phrase they are using?
                      I’ve been using Wordtracker’s Keywords tool for years, and it was one of the tools I
                      took to weather.com when I began working here.”



                      Working with product managers
                      Weather.com has 15 main content areas and a product manager for each. Fulford, who
                      came from a search engine optimization (SEO) background, educates his product
                      managers on how to use Wordtracker’s software so they can carry out effective
                      keyword research on each of their sections.

                      The menu links on the home page give a clue to the detail Fulford and his team have
                      gone into - each leads to sub-menus which are all keyword optimized.




                      In the above screenshot, for example, items include ‘rush hour traffic‘, ‘flights &
                      business travel‘, ‘vacation planner’ and ‘scenic drive ideas‘. Each link takes you into
                      pages packed with tips, ideas and information.



Wordtracker.com                            Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 28



                                                                 Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | weather.com



                      Not just ‘weddings’ but ‘outdoor weddings’
                      Fulford explains how he approached one of the most popular sections on the site -
                      weddings.

                      “In the past we looked at our section on weddings and thought about how we can get
                      into the mindset of someone looking for information on weather and weddings. We
                      had to ask ourselves - what is unique about our site?“

                      Weather.com realized that users who submitted the search term ‘outdoor weddings’
                      viewed far more pages per visit than the average site user. Other similar search terms
                      like ‘wedding planner’ were producing many fewer referrals. So they went about
                      optimizing the landing page for the search term ‘outdoor weddings.’

                      “We decided we would target outdoor weddings and you can find out what historically
                      the typical weather has been on particular dates“, says Fulford.




                      They have recently introduced a new section on the wedding page which features
                      photographs of brides and grooms on their big day, with short comments from the
                      contributor. There is even a sunset calculator tool, plus handy tips like making your
                      wedding programs in the shape of fans to cool your guests down.




Wordtracker.com                           Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 29



                                                                Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | weather.com



                      Fulford says one of the challenges weather.com faces is how to direct users to its
                      various info-packed pages.

                      “Our key goals beyond giving people information about weather is to make them more
                      aware of other content on the site. We don’t have outside marketing so we have to
                      advertise our guides within the site.

                      We have guides on pollen, allergies, healthcare and how to look after your pets in the
                      heat, which we need to optimize for search engines.”



                      Preparing content in advance
                      Although the weather can sometimes be unpredictable the seasons aren’t. As we
                      edge towards the fall, weather.com has already optimized those pages it knows will be
                      popular in the months ahead, as Fulford explains.

                      “Our new projects like the hurricane center we optimized for the various hurricane
                      names, before there were any active hurricanes“, he says.

                      “Thankfully for us, we can prepare in advance. We know storm season is coming up
                      and they tend to release the names of hurricanes well in advance, so we can be the
                      early bird and have those names ranking really well, sometimes even before people
                      are searching for them.”

                      The site has tips on how to protect your home from hurricanes as well as satellite
                      pictures and videos tracking the movements of storms as they take shape. Budding
                      photographers are also given tips on how to improve their pictures of weather.

                      This kind of user interaction is something weather.com would like to enhance by
                      providing a better platform for people visiting the site.

                      “Weather is always something people want to talk about. It’s the ultimate ice-breaker.

                      We’re developing a new social media community where we can leverage the content
                      people are generating for search engine optimization. We want to give them a
                      platform where we can generate their tags on videos and on photographs.”



                      Quick results
                      Fulford says weather.com is fortunate in that they change content frequently as the
                      weather throws up different issues with the seasons’ change. Optimizing content
                      means they get good results quickly.


Wordtracker.com                           Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 30



                                                                Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | weather.com



                      The site is on pace for a 60% increase in year over year traffic from search engines,
                      which is 30% up on an aggressive target they set.

                      With such fantastic results, there’s no stopping them. Fulford has now set his sights
                      on their overseas websites, as well as specialist sites dedicated to how the weather is
                      affected by global warming.

                      “I’m about to optimize our international websites like weather.co.uk which covers the
                      UK and we also have a media presence in France, South America and Germany too.

                      “The content we have is tailored to the UK market. We are going to concentrate on
                      the holiday planning section because we know the Brits get four to six weeks a year
                      holiday but in the States, it’s only about two weeks,“ he explains.

                      Fulford went on to say: “We have a separate site dedicated to climate change called
                      climate.weather.com. Our top key phrases for that site are climate change, green living
                      and global warming. We used Wordtracker’s Keywords tool as a way to develop these
                      keywords.
                      “We used to have just videos and news reports on the site but we’ve had to find ways
                      to expand the content so we now have transcripts for the videos. The videos and
                      transcripts have both got the keywords in them, and the variations of those phrases.




Wordtracker.com                            Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 31



                                                                Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | weather.com



                      “In the footer we have video site maps which have a list of optimized videos with
                      keywords in their tags.”



                      So what’s next for weather.com?
                      “We have 200 key phrases and are looking at the hot trends in global warming. We
                      look at what’s in the press and then create content like blogs, videos, news reports and
                      then utilize those key phrases around them. So it’s going to be a busy year for us.




                      Key Points

                      • The key to Weather.com’s online success is their ability to get into the mindset of
                      people searching for weather related topics. Meticulous attention to detail in 15 main
                      content areas has led to a year on year growth of 60% in traffic.

                      • SEO skills can be passed on by an experienced search engine optimizer. Fulford
                      has successfully trained and support journalists and writers who didn’t have extensive
                      online experience.

                      • Content can be prepared in advance. Weather.com knows the storm season is
                      coming up, and since the names of hurricanes are released well in advance, they can
                      be the early bird and have those names ranking really well, sometimes even before
                      people are searching for them.

                      • Weather.com is also developing a new social media community where they can
                      leverage the content people are generating for search engine optimization.




Wordtracker.com                           Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 32



                                                                Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Savvy Vegetarian: 50 first
page results on Google

by Rachelle Money


There are estimated to be around 12 million vegetarians in
the US, and 4 million in the UK. Vegetarianism has moved
from counter-culture to the mainstream, which means more
people are searching for advice and nutritious vegetarian
recipes on the web.




Wordtracker.com            Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 33



                                                 Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | Savvy Vegetarian



                      SavvyVegetarian.com is one of the sites which has appeared to service online demand.
                      It’s a content rich site that has drawn its inspiration from Wordtracker and now appears
                      on the first page of Google search results for over 50 keywords.

                      For Judy Kingsbury her journey to becoming a healthy vegetarian was a rocky one.
                      Growing up in the small town of Manitoba, 200 miles north of Winnipeg, she says
                      the term vegetarian wasn’t even part of her vocabulary. In the late sixties Judy, who
                      describes herself as cook, artist, writer and gardener, took her first tentative steps
                      towards vegetarianism.

                      She tells Wordtracker what it was like. “I’ve been a vegetarian since my early twenties
                      and it was really tough going. I had no support or resources and I didn’t know any other
                      vegetarians. I really started to flounder.

                      “I didn‘t really have one reason for being vegetarian, I just felt better, and wanted to do
                      something no one else was.”

                      A lack of nutritional education, along with the fact that there were so few other people
                      she could turn to meant Judy’s health suffered..

                      She threw herself into a macrobiotic diet of low fat and high-fiber foods and grew thin
                      and dehydrated. She was malnourished and eventually sought help to restore her
                      health and was shown a more nutritious way of living a vegetarian lifestyle.



                      Meat and potato town
                      Judy says she had to learn how to cook and prepare a balanced diet. “It was a huge
                      learning curve,” she adds.
                      “I was living in Minnesota, in a meat and potato kind of town. When I started to tell
                      people I was vegetarian they all wanted me to help them because they knew of others
                      who were vegetarian.”

                      “I figured that as more people were starting to become vegetarian there was more
                      demand for advice. I thought it would be a good idea to start up my own business as a
                      coach. I soon learned that nobody wants to be told what to do, so the business failed.”

                      Judy, who has now been a vegetarian for almost 40 years, says starting up an
                      educational website dedicated to vegetarianism and vegan lifestyles seemed a natural
                      decision. In 2003 www.savvyvegetarian.com was born - a website which Judy says has
                      taken on its own personality and continues to grow in popularity.




Wordtracker.com                            Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 34



                                                                 Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | SavvyVegetarian



                      The website itself offers a plethora of information and great tips on vegetarian living
                      from advice and blog posts to recipes and articles.

                      Judy has spent years building up the site’s content in a bid not to exclude anyone
                      who visits the site. There’s advice for mothers whose children have decided to be
                      vegetarians, teenagers and pregnant women as well as advice on how to deal with
                      weight gain, vegetarian social etiquette and her top ten tips on going veggie.



                      Keyword research triples sales
                      Judy now receives an average of 60,000 visits to her site every month. So how has she
                      been able to generate this level of traffic?

                      “I can safely say that keywords are the basis for the growth of Savvy Vegetarian,” she
                      explains.

                      Judy uses Wordtracker’s Keywords tool to discover which related keywords are
                      relevant for her site. Her first stop was recipes - a popular resource on her site.

                      Judy optimized her website and she is reaping the rewards.

                      “I started keyword research on tofu recipes and developed a tofu recipe section,
                      with lots of tofu info, and so far about 20 tasty, tested, family-friendly tofu recipes. I
                      optimized page text and meta tags for that keyword phrase, and embedded links on
                      other pages.

                      “When you realize how many people are looking for tofu recipes, see 1.8 million pages
                      on Google, and then that I’m on the front page, you know you’re on the right track”,
                      she said.

                      Thanks to this methodical approach SavvyVgetarian.com is above the fold on page
                      one for about 50 search terms on Google.

                      Judy says vegetarian cooking and recipes were “off the radar for a long time” and few
                      books were published or had only one tofu or lentil recipe.

                      Without keyword research she says it would have been very easy to go off on the
                      wrong tangent.

                      “Once I started paying attention to keywords and optimizing my pages I could see the
                      benefits almost instantly. I think looking at keywords and researching them is really
                      the basis of starting up and running a website - any website,” explains Judy.



Wordtracker.com                            Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 35



                                                                 Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | SavvyVegetarian



                      By paying more attention to her keywords and optimizing her site Judy says traffic
                      through SavvyVegetarian.com has tripled in the past year. She has taken keywords
                      and peppered them throughout her blog spots and her articles on living healthily. She
                      also has a resource page which links to related sites which may be of interest - such as
                      environment, green living, organic food and holistic medicine.



                      Income from advertising
                      Careful arrangement of the site has helped her achieve 2,000 visits each day, and has
                      also led to Savvy Vegetarian becoming a brand in its own right. Now Judy is receiving a
                      steady income through advertising on the site.

                      “I think vegetarianism and healthy eating is taking on a natural upsurge in people’s
                      consciousness, and it’s continuing to grow. It’s a growing industry and no one really
                      has a grasp on it yet.”

                      The success of SavvyVegetarian.com has been a fulfilling experience for Judy. As she
                      suffered from poor health at the beginning of her journey, it has left her with an even
                      greater desire to continue educating people on vegetarianism.

                      “The response I get from people is a big motivator because I really feel like I’m
                      providing a great service.”

                      Even someone as experienced as Judy is sometimes surprised by the emerging trends
                      in vegetarian cooking.

                      “I’m continuing to develop the site, especially the advice section. I’m doing daily
                      keyword searches which enable me to spot the trends. For instance I’ve recently
                      noticed recipes for quinoa are beginning to rise, so I need to start developing that area
                      too.”




Wordtracker.com                           Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 36



                                                                Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | SavvyVegetarian




                      Key Points

                      • Rachelle Money talks to SavvyVegetarian.com, a content rich site that now appears
                      on the first page of Google search results for over 50 keywords.

                      • Vegetarianism continues to power a growing online business market. There are now
                      estimated to be around 12 million vegetarians in the US and 4 million in the United
                      Kingdom where the total vegetarian food market has been put at £670m per year.

                      • It’s moved from counter-culture to a mainstream way of living, which also means
                      more people are searching for advice and nutritious vegetarian recipes on the web




Wordtracker.com                           Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 37



                                                                Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
TraveIntelligence.com
solves a problem:
Attracting customers
by Karen Durham-Diggins


TravelIntelligence.com is a collective of some of the most
popular travel writers in Europe. Together they have created
over 8,000 pages of excellent travel writing. But until they
were optimized, business returns had fallen well short of
potential.




Wordtracker.com              Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 38



                                                   Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | Travel Intelligence



                        Great oaks from little acorns grow - or even from a garden shed in Shepherds Bush,
                        West London - which is where TravelIntelligence.com (TI) began in 1999. Created by a
                        small group of professional travel writers including William Dalrymple, Rory Maclean,
                        Andrew Eames and Philip Marsden - the company was led by founder and current
                        editorial director James Dunford Wood, together with editorial director AA Gill.

                        Their original aim was twofold. Firstly, to distill all this unrivalled travel experience for
                        the first time into one online place, and secondly to act as a travel writing collective
                        syndicating their work. Such was the kudos associated with the site that friends, friends
                        of friends and later, members of the public, were calling TI to ask how to book the
                        wonderful hotels that they had read about on the site. These people were also looking
                        for trustworthy recommendations on which hotels to stay in, trips to take, secret
                        destinations, hideaway restaurants and general travelling tips. The site was growing
                        organically and needed help with direction.



                        Change of direction
                        In 2004, current MD Marin Muyser joined the company and TI began to concentrate
                        on monetizing and promoting the site. It continued to expand - using the writers’
                        knowledge to create an unrivalled and informed database of boutique, luxury and
                        design hotels around the world. A proprietary online booking distribution system
                        known as Starfish was introduced. Starfish now powers affiliate websites such as
                        Mr and Mrs Smith, Hip Hotels, Instylehotels, Hedonist’s Guide as well as the Travel
                        Intelligence hotel booking site itself.

                        TI used a range of marketing channels and ideas. Obviously with such a great source
                        of writers they’ve produced books - The Best of France and The Best of Spain. A synergy
                        has been created with other companies by way of contra dealing and cross marketing,
                        and these strategies have also helped build the TI brand. Travel SOS pamphlets
                        (handy guides for emergencies) are given to customers as an added extra.

                        The company is hoping to expand this marketing opportunity with their publishing
                        partners Hg2, Mr and Mrs Smith, Hip Hotels and Wallpaper*. A beautifully
                        written newsletter goes out every month to a rapidly growing subscriber base
                        (currently 83,000) of discerning, high-spending ABC1 travellers. Samples of newly
                        commissioned travel writing were sent out quarterly as a marketing tool to selected
                        subscribers, and throughout 2006 TI also ran an offline PR Press campaign using a PR
                        agency.




Wordtracker.com                              Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 39



                                                                   Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | Travel Intelligence



                        Two redesigns in two years
                        But it hasn’t always been plain sailing. Simon Nichols, head of business development
                        for TI with responsibility for its affiliate network says, “We’ve had two major redesigns
                        in two years - the problem was not that we changed it too often – it was that instead of
                        concentrating on navigation and usability, we were more concerned with design.”

                        “At times TI the site and Starfish - our affiliate marketing program - were moving down
                        different paths and we didn’t have a clear idea as to how best to make the two systems
                        work together”, he admits.

                        TI has valuable online assets, including its in-house developed technology giving
                        access to a unique database of stylish hotels (many bookable online), its own affiliate
                        marketing program through Starfish and a treasure trove of over 8,000 pages of
                        content in the form of fantastic travel writing. All of them have been under-resourced
                        until recently.

                        “You could argue that a number of our partners have utilized the tools we provided
                        them with better than we have utilized them for our own site” continues Nichols.



                        Enter keyword research
                        TI had carried out limited pay per click (PPC) advertising, mainly around generic
                        keywords such as ‘boutique hotels’ and specific hotel names, but with no search
                        engine optimization (SEO) specialist TI wasn’t maximizing one of its greatest assets -
                        content.

                        “TI really didn’t realize how valuable the content was as a resource in online marketing
                        terms and hadn’t spent any time or expertise developing it.” acknowledges Nichols

                        After analyzing the results he focused on some short-term fixes, but the real shift in
                        direction came when Marin Muyser (MD) brought in SEO specialist David Deutsch, who
                        happily agreed to work with TI as Head of Online Marketing.

                        “Travel Intelligence has over 8000 pages of extremely rich and completely
                        unoptimized content. When fully optimized it will be a force to be reckoned with, and
                        taking on the big guys will be of particular satisfaction” beams Deutsch.

                        So TI went back to basics and rebuilt its marketing plan.

                        “The first step is simple meta-tagging, followed by building link popularity with
                        properly managed SEO marketing.” Deutsch adds.



Wordtracker.com                             Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 40



                                                                  Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | Travel Intelligence



                        Deutsch uses Wordtracker’s Keywords research tool. “On analyzing the site we saw
                        which keywords we should be using. ‘Hotel review’ for example, is a popular keyword
                        but it doesn’t bring in sales – and we want to optimize for keywords that focus on
                        booking.”

                        Having identified the major changes on which to focus, Deutsch’s next step for TI was
                        to work out why they weren’t at the top of the search engines when a user, for example,
                        types in ‘Paris Hotel’.

                        “TI has several hundred pages of subject matter but they weren’t optimized - all
                        similar pages should focus on one general keyword like ‘Paris Hotel’ as well as on
                        more specific individual/niche words such as Hotel Crillon Paris” explains Deutsch.



                        Choose keywords carefully
                        Some keywords can be irrelevant - one of our travel articles is about a famous ancient
                        Greek statue; the story is written by a very erudite writer and is called “Aphrodite of
                        the Beautiful Ass.” Needless to say, this article brought thousands of the wrong type
                        of visitor, who certainly weren’t looking for the type of content we were offering!” says
                        Deutsch.

                        “Wordtracker’s keywords tool is so useful. If I want to focus on Paris in order to attract
                        all the relevant traffic from those looking in that sector I need to know that people are
                        searching with both ‘luxury hotels Paris’ and ‘five star hotel Paris’.

                        “I can also use keyword research for reverse SEO - finding out which keywords were
                        used to visit my site. Web analytics gives me 50,000 keywords. I can look at each
                        keyword and they can be removed if all they are producing is bouncing traffic. Or I
                        can take them and type them into Wordtracker’s Keywords tool and it will show which
                        other terms someone who used that particular word also uses. I can add those terms
                        to target more keywords and attract more traffic.”



                        Visitor tracking is essential
                        Deutsch finds tracking unique visitors of prime importance. “I can check out how
                        many pages our visitors look at, starting at the page they enter the site on, to see how
                        popular that content is. If there is nowhere else for a user to go to from that page - you
                        lose them. Every link in the menu bar should relate to the subject matter. An average
                        visitor should see 8 pages while a great visitor will see 100. This process helps improve
                        navigation as you can find out how people move through the site instead of randomly
                        having to guess.”



Wordtracker.com                              Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 41



                                                                  Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | Travel Intelligence



                        “Once the site has been SEO’d, extra strands of content added and the navigation
                        sorted - then the fun starts. The focus is now on keywords which will drive sales.
                        This applies to PPC pay per click too - I want to know which clicks lead to action. I
                        use Wordtracker to weed out general keywords that bring traffic but not sales – for
                        example, I don’t bid on ‘beautiful ass’.” Deutsch jokes.

                        Keyword: beautiful ass
                        Unique visitors: 200 Bounce Rate (people who left as soon as they saw the page) - 182
                        bounces (92%)

                        Aphrodite of the Beautiful Ass
                        Number 8 on Google search. Google Page Rank for this page 0/10.

                        “The end result when using keyword research for PPC is a keyword list of several
                        hundred thousand words, attracting the correct type of visitor to your site, together
                        with proper website usability to produce a 2% or more sales conversion rate”,
                        concludes Deutsch. Big boys beware!




                        Key Points

                        • Travel Intelligence were good at using rich content in newsletters, books, marketing
                        campaigns but realized they had a big problem - none of it was optimized.

                        • Using reverse SEO they found out which keywords people were using to arrive at
                        their website

                        • Travel Intelligence found keyword research increased sales but they had to rebuild
                        their marketing strategy first.




Wordtracker.com                             Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 42



                                                                  Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
John Pye auctioneers uses
keywords for link building

by Rachelle Money


Link building is crucial to online success. Auctioneering firm
John Pye used press attention about the credit crunch to
build links to its website. Footfall increased 30%.




Wordtracker.com               Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 43



                                                    Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | John Pye & Sons Auction House



                      John Pye’s business development director, Sheldon Miller, spotted an opportunity to
                      piggyback the hottest story of the year – the credit crunch. He used the subsequent
                      press attention to build all-important links to the firm’s website.

                      John Pye & Sons Auction House, based in Nottingham, England has had a good
                      relationship with local media throughout its 40 years of business, but didn’t hit the
                      big time until a link building campaign propelled it on to the front pages of a national
                      newspaper supplement earlier this year.

                      The Guardian, a leading national newspaper, has a readership of more than one
                      million people a day. Online it attracts around 10 million users a month from the UK.

                      John Pye & Sons is an auctioneer and valuer specializing in surplus electrical stock.



                      Secret weapon
                      The company has a secret weapon in the shape of Sheldon Miller, its business
                      development director, who has eight years experience as a journalist, and knows
                      exactly what it takes to turn an ordinary story into a great one.

                      John Pye & Sons got its big break after Miller identified a “hot issue” and saw an
                      opportunity to make the headlines.

                      Miller explains, “After Christmas we started to hear a lot of retailers reporting that they
                      were struggling. High street firms were issuing profit warnings and we were getting a
                      lot of surplus stock in the auction house, so we’d never been busier.

                      “Business analysts always say that if you want to check out the barometer of recession
                      go down to the auction house and see how busy it is.”



                      Researching the journalist
                      Miller set about finding a journalist at a major newspaper who had already written
                      about auctions, and found Patrick Collinson from the Guardian. He had written about
                      police auctions in the past so Miller sent him an email outlining his proposal, and
                      inviting Collinson to Nottingham to see how well the company was doing in the credit
                      crunch.

                      He chose not to send a press release because he “didn’t want to tell the guy how
                      to suck eggs. This was the Guardian newspaper and I didn‘t want to come across as
                      patronizing.”



Wordtracker.com                            Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 44



                                                                 Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | John Pye & Sons Auction House



                      Miller also didn’t do what most people do, which is follow the email up with a phone
                      call, because he thought this might seem pushy.

                      This attitude goes back to his time spent in the newsroom where he says public
                      relations (PR) consultants would be “passed round the office like a hot potato”
                      because of their aggressive tactics.

                      Miller’s approach was successful. Less than 48 hours after he sent the email the
                      journalist was on a train heading to Nottingham.



                      Be prepared
                      Miller prepared for the interview by making notes. “Sit down before you meet the
                      journalist and bullet point the messages you want to get across,” Miller advises.

                      “You might be taken off message because the journalist will ask questions that you
                      might not want to concentrate on, but the journalist wants a frank and broad account
                      of what they’re covering, so you have to pay due attention to that”.

                      “It’s a disaster to pick up the phone and talk off the cuff - think about what you are
                      going to say.”

                      The mistake most PR consultants make is to send the same story to every newspaper
                      in the country. If a journalist doesn’t have exclusivity on a story it’s the difference
                      between two full pages of coverage and a short mention. Miller chose not to contact
                      any other journalists out of respect for Collinson. He had after all taken the time to
                      travel 160 miles from London to Nottingham.



                      The end result: can you clean up?
                      The finished article was published in the money supplement of the Guardian’s
                      Saturday paper. The article made the front page.

                      The article ‘Can You Clean Up At Auction?’ was for Miller, “quite a good account of our
                      business. I think it manages people’s expectations quite well,” he said, although he
                      admits when he first read the article that he “recoiled a bit”.

                      He went on to add: “Vacuum cleaners going for £1.50 - is that very good for the client?
                      No, but is it good for getting people to come to the auction house? Yes.”

                      “It pushed the prices up because the more people who come to an auction, the higher
                      the prices – which is better for our clients.”


Wordtracker.com                            Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 45



                                                                 Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | John Pye & Sons Auction House



                      Building links
                      Miller said the article also provided the company with “marketing gold” because it was
                      published online - complete with a link to the company’s site. The auction house felt
                      the impact of the coverage almost immediately. The firm recorded its highest-ever
                      web traffic, which rose by more than 50%. Footfall increased by 30%, leading to a
                      record level of registered bidders in the auction house.

                      Miller said the Guardian became its second-highest referral domain after Google.
                      “So we know that people are coming to our site directly because of the article.”

                      Inbound links are particularly important. They are a key factor in determining the order
                      in which search engines rank pages. Get lots of relevant inbound links and your site
                      will shoot up Google’s rankings. Getting an inbound link from an authoritative site like
                      the Guardian helps even more.

                      “For a morning’s work writing an email and then helping the journalist when he was
                      here, that’s pretty good going,” says Miller.



                      Buzz keywords
                      This online success has triggered a new direction for John Pye & Sons’ PR. Miller has
                      started to optimize the firm’s website, which will support his online PR projects.

                      “We are going to be looking at hot topics and buzz keywords within our industry to
                      try and hook into those, and also find some strong PR opportunities and develop an
                      online presence.”




Wordtracker.com                           Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 46



                                                                Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | John Pye & Sons Auction House




                      Key Points

                      • Identify a story or trend which is getting a lot of media coverage and see how you can
                      turn it into an opportunity to get your company in the paper.

                      • Don’t be too pushy-journalists are busy people and the more you push the less likely
                      they are to do you any favors.

                      • Make some notes with the kinds of messages you want to get across to the journalist,
                      but be aware that the journalist will ask you all sorts of questions, so be prepared to go
                      off track.

                      • Trust the journalist - he/she won’t bite...I think!




Wordtracker.com                             Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 47



                                                                  Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
iStylista combines blogging
with keyword research to
double sales in four months
by Rachelle Money


Blogging is not just a great way of connecting with your
audience, it’s also means you can include keyword rich
content on your site. By launching a blog, online personal
stylist service iStylista.com doubled sales in a matter of
months.




Wordtracker.com              Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 48



                                                   Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | iStylista



                         Hayden Allen-Vercoe, co-founder of iStylista.com, had spotted a gap in the market.
                         Lots of people wanted to know more about personal style but either felt self-
                         conscious about hiring a personal stylist or unsure about whether they could afford
                         one.

                         iStylista.com was born in May 2008, with fashion stylist Chantelle Znideric, and
                         creative marketer Hayden Allen-Vercoe at the helm. The online service offers ‘style
                         theory’ on what clothes to wear for your body shape, what colors to wear, how to
                         accessorize and how to conceal those areas of your body you aren’t proud of.



                         Online PR
                         iStylista has never advertised. Instead it has excellent online PR and a great blog.
                         Allen-Vercoe says the keyword-rich blog boosted the site’s Google rankings and
                         doubled sales.

                         “We do keyword research for every article we post. We look at what the competition is
                         doing and we use Wordtracker’s Keywords tool. We search for things like ‘maxi dress’,
                         get all the relevant keywords and then write the article around the keywords.”

                         Although this is a good technique, Allen-Vercoe warned against writing articles that
                         look staged. Your blog entry needs to have flow and make sense to the reader without
                         feeling labored by your inclusion of keywords.

                         “We always knew we wanted to rank highly with ‘personal stylist’, but we knew that it
                         would take time to get there,” says Allen-Vercoe.

                         “We built the site with the intention of introducing keywords at the right stage.

                         “Because the service is unique, we focused on a number of keyword strings. We got
                         them from Wordtracker’s Keywords tool and it drove a lot of organic traffic to our site,
                         which in turn got other bloggers talking about us.”

                         iStylista has managed to build a reputation in the blogosphere by networking. Allen-
                         Vercoe leaves comments on like-minded blogs, and in return iStylista’s reviews of new
                         products are often linked to by the bloggers he’s connected with.



                         Be the first to review
                         Allen-Vercoe has worked on getting the website onto a variety of press lists so that he
                         is one of the first to know about product launches.



Wordtracker.com                              Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 49



                                                                   Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | iStylista



                         “We are constantly being sent information on new products, and we are asked to
                         review new lines and ranges, which has helped us write our blog posts. We write to the
                         brands and ask to be put on their press lists or newsletters, so we are always kept in
                         the loop.”

                         This regular new material means iStylista’s team has a steady stream of ideas to
                         blog about. They write about three entries a week on a range of issues such as new
                         hairdryers, perfumes, television shows and competitions.



                         Blogging success
                         Allen-Vercoe says the blog has helped to double sales. “Since we launched the blog
                         it’s taken us two months for us to bed down in Google, but we have doubled our sales
                         and we can track that through the blog. We find that people will type something like
                         Babyliss hairdryer into Google and we’ll come up - they read our blog, which may have
                         reviewed that product, and then they have a closer look at our site and finally, make a
                         purchase.”


                         ResponseSource.com
                         Allen-Vercoe says his winning combination is Wordtracker’s Keywords tool and
                         a resource called ResponseSource.com, which is a free service for journalists.
                         ResponseSource allows journalists to find out more about particular brands.
                         They may put in a request and the relevant public relations (PR) company sends
                         information on the products they are looking for.


                         Yahoo Answers
                         As well as leaving comments on blogs that have a high visitor rate, and networking on
                         social forums, Allen-Vercoe has found he can drive more traffic through the site using
                         Yahoo Answers. “Although it’s read by a lot by teenagers who don’t have the money for
                         our product, we have converted a few sales from it.”

                         Using analytics, iStylista found that ‘personal stylist’ singular doesn’t create sales, but
                         ‘personal stylists’ plural has produced a 50% conversion rate. Allen-Vercoe believes
                         that this is because “people who are searching for personal stylists aren’t looking for
                         anyone in particular and it’s fascinating for us to get the lion’s share.”

                         Wordtracker
                         The iStylista team is now focusing on the long tail keywords they have discovered
                         through Wordtracker’s Keywords tool. These reflect the kind of person who would
                         be interested in the website. This more focused attention will inform its new online
                         changing room, a service that will launch in 2010.


Wordtracker.com                               Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 50



                                                                    Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | iStylista




                         Key Points

                         • It is essential to use carefully researched keywords in your page titles.

                         • Your text has to read well. Don’t just stuff keywords into your copy.

                         • Be the first to report something and other bloggers are more likely to link to you.




Wordtracker.com                               Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 51



                                                                    Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
How Hearst magazines increased
website traffic by 150% with
Wordtracker’s keywords tool

by Rachelle Money


Hearst Publications runs 15 of the world’s most popular
magazines, titles such as Cosmopolitan, Esquire, Oprah’s O
Magazine, and Good Housekeeping as well as five web-only
publications. Dan Roberts, the firm’s search engine analyst,
says Hearst’s online traffic has grown 150% since it started
using Wordtracker’s Keywords tool.




Wordtracker.com              Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 52



                                                   Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | Hearst Magazines



                      Dan Roberts has worked at Hearst for more than two years and was responsible for
                      introducing Wordtracker’s Keywords tool to its publishing process. He tells us exactly
                      what kinds of benefits keyword research has brought to the company in this Q&A
                      article with Rachelle Money.



                      How did journalists and editors respond to the idea of
                      search engine optimization (SEO)?
                      I think it was very helpful. Having a tool like this is a great way to initiate people who
                      aren’t that familiar with SEO, because you can illustrate how a simple word choice can
                      make a significant difference.



                      Can you give us some examples?
                      There are dozens of examples. For some of the women’s titles fashion is a big part of
                      what they do, so early on we made the decision that we’d instruct them to run some
                      comparatives on the keywords ‘fashion’ and ‘style’. In the print context they like to use
                      the word style, but I stressed to them that style is somewhat nebulous in that it can
                      mean a number of things. People’s behavior online is different because when they
                      are looking for content they tend to be much more literal, because they have to be.
                      Wordtracker’s search data showed us that, by a ratio of 7:1, people were more likely to
                      use ‘fashion’ than ‘style’ when looking for the kind of content we were promoting.



                      I’ve found that most journalists don’t respond well to
                      SEO - how did you convince them it was a good idea?
                      A lot of people have had to make a paradigm shift. It’s the need to be more literal. It’s
                      a constant struggle. We work with a lot of different editors across many titles, and the
                      ones who embrace it and trust the data they see from the tool get great results. Once
                      they start to see the results they are convinced it’s a good idea. The ones who ignore it
                      do so at their own peril and their results speak for themselves.



                      How does SEO and keyword research work on a
                      practical level?
                      We have incorporated a link to Wordtracker.com directly into our CMS (content
                      management system) so that when someone is entering a critical field, like the meta
                      title, right next to it there’s a link to the Keywords tool, which acts as a ‘call to action.’
                      They can check to see if the keywords they have chosen are a solid choice, or if there’s
                      something better out there.



Wordtracker.com                             Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 53



                                                                  Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | Hearst Magazines



                      I think one of the main challenges for editors is that anything that adds another stage
                      to the publishing process is going to be a difficult request, which is why we added the
                      link to Wordtracker in our CMS so that we can make it as easy possible.

                      We have made keyword research part of the publishing process. We don’t get to the
                      point where we are re-writing the body copy (so that it is optimized), but we do make
                      changes where the impact is - in the meta-title and the headline.

                      We encourage editors to use keywords in the places we know will work: for example,
                      by using keywords in the URL of a specific page. We have seen some pretty solid
                      results because of that.



                      What kind of results?
                      A conservative estimate is that between the third quarter of 2007 and the third quarter
                      of 2008 our traffic grew by 80%. I should qualify that by saying that this represents
                      growth from non-branded queries - somebody searching for ‘vacuum cleaners’, rather
                      than Good Housekeeping Magazine. We do track branded search traffic, but there is
                      little we can do to influence it. We assume that we will capture searches for our brand,
                      so we tend to focus our optimization efforts on capturing traffic for more generic
                      queries by optimizing every piece of content uniquely.

                      In two and a half years we’ve seen well over 150% increase in traffic. Wordtracker’s
                      Keywords tool is fundamental, whether it’s my team using it to do the groundwork in
                      determining what the directory names will be or what the navigation of the site will be,
                      right down to the editors using it themselves to quickly optimize individual articles.



                      So your conversion rates for subscriptions must
                      be great too?
                      The more traffic we get the more subscriptions we sell. We also have display
                      advertising, which we make revenue from. The more people who come in, the more
                      offers we can put in front of them and the higher our ad inventory.



                      Do you think journalists have to start putting more effort
                      into writing for the web?
                      The single biggest threat to the publishing industry right now is the web. One point
                      of confusion is that there are a lot of people in the traditional print media who feel
                      threatened by what we do. They see it as throwing away the audience share. Why




Wordtracker.com                           Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 54



                                                                Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | Hearst Magazines



                      would we publish the content online when that gives people less incentive to buy the
                      actual newspaper or magazine? We’ve done a lot to demystify that and debunk that
                      perception.

                      Our data suggests online and print for magazines are two different audiences and
                      if you treat them as such you can grow traffic to both of them. If you ignore the web
                      because you think it will cannibalize your readership then you’re only hurting yourself

                      Magazine readership is going to continue to decrease regardless of what we do
                      online. The fact is we aren’t losing online readers to our own magazines. We are losing
                      them to everything and anything. It’s a blind man’s mentality if people still have that
                      mentality that the web is somehow going to hurt them. If you haven’t started to make
                      that transition it will be too late before long.



                      Can you appreciate that for some journalists it’s a big
                      leap from print to online?
                      Five years ago I was working for a dying magazine. I worked for TV Guide in the States
                      and if you want to find a victim of the digital age you really couldn’t find a better
                      example. It didn’t have the foresight to survive or make the transition – it was five years
                      too late.

                      I see a lot of my colleagues hanging on to jobs that may not be there in a couple of
                      years. I am encouraging anyone and everyone to not be intimidated by making that
                      jump from print to online. I was at first, but it’s not that big a jump as people think.



                      As a former print journalist what benefits can you see in
                      keyword research and SEO?
                      The data that’s available gives you a better insight than ever before into your audience.
                      Magazines for the most part have been all about guesswork, or they’ll get focus
                      groups to try to figure out what their audience wants. Online we don’t have to guess;
                      we know what they’re looking for and more importantly, how they’re looking for it.

                      Where print media should feel the most threatened is the fact that anybody with the
                      resolve to do so can be a successful journalist online, if they know how to tap into that
                      audience.




Wordtracker.com                            Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 55



                                                                 Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | Hearst Magazines



                      What is the future for print magazines like the ones
                      owned by Hearst?
                      At Hearst we have 15 magazine publications and we have five other web-exclusive
                      properties that don’t necessarily have a print component. That’s the direction we’re
                      going in and I think we’ll see more web-only properties, moving away from print
                      brands.




                      Key Points

                      • A link to Wordtracker within the Content Management System allows keyword
                      research to become an integral part of the publishing process.

                      • Wordtracker tells online journalists what their audience is searching for.




Wordtracker.com                           Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 56



                                                                Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
How keyword research and
SEO increased traffic to
Spotty Gift Boxes by 228%

by Rachelle Money


Caroline Blatchford’s company SpottyGiftBoxes is barely a
year old and yet Caroline is already reaping the rewards of
building a search engine friendly site.




Wordtracker.com              Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 57



                                                   Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | Spotty Gift Boxes



                       Like most online business owners, Caroline has had a number of careers. A one time
                       lawyer, teacher and then fitness club manager, she found herself in a position where
                       she had to stay at home to look after her young family. She soon struck upon the idea
                       of starting up a gift site based on people’s hobbies and interests. But she was faced
                       with a search engine optimization (SEO) challenge – how do you optimize a site when
                       your biggest keyword is also extremely competitive?



                       Competitive keywords
                       Caroline says: “Because we wanted to compete well on search engines we didn’t target
                       words like ‘gifts’, because that’s terribly competitive - we decided to focus on keywords
                       that centered around hobbies and interests so we had ‘gifts for cat lovers’, ‘gifts for
                       gardeners’, or gifts related to cooking, and that was done to attract the traffic in.”

                       It worked. Between September 2008 and March 2009 traffic to the site increased by
                       a whopping 228%. Caroline says the combination of creating each page with SEO
                       in mind from the start, along with an increased depth of products has led to this
                       incredible surge in visitors.

                       While embarking on her first keyword research project she was surprised by the range
                       of keywords she discovered.

                       “The one that always gets me is that so many searches are for ‘kids’ rather than
                       ‘children’s’. That’s the reason why I use keyword research as a starting point because
                       my brain is obviously geared towards the kinds of terms I am used to saying, but they
                       don’t necessarily match with the terms my customers are using.

                       “If I have a simple product for which I think the title is pretty obvious, once you start
                       searching around you find people calling things by different names and searching in
                       different ways. Once you get your mind around that you can pick up all the traffic you
                       want to.”



                       Seasonal keywords
                       Spotty Gift Boxes is a young company and still learning about the trends and niche
                       markets that they can tap into, as Caroline explains: “We are still learning about
                       seasonality. We had a fantastic March and sold lots of children’s gardening tools but in
                       April because of the school holidays, we saw a downturn in sales. We are keeping our
                       fingers crossed that it will come up again.”




Wordtracker.com                             Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 58



                                                                  Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | Spotty Gift Boxes



                       Many young sites like Caroline’s can find it difficult to compete with larger, richer
                       companies - especially around those key calendar dates such as Mother’s Day or
                       Valentine’s Day. Has she found a way around this?

                       “What I will be trying to do is put some seeds in now for the more competitive terms
                       but not realistically expecting them to bear fruit for another year; but I do want to start
                       the process. The only way we can grab traffic through events at the moment is through
                       AdWords or the equivalent.”



                       Link building
                       As a new site they are also placing foundation bricks on their link building strategy. On
                       the home page they recently advertised a coloring-in competition for children, which
                       came as a direct response to the increased traffic for child-related products.

                       Caroline says she has used the competition to attract parents, who are her key
                       customers, but also schools, to whom she supplies children’s cookery utensils and
                       gardening equipment. “We were trying to create link bait and give schools a reason to
                       give us a link, and that would allow parents to download the competition themselves,”
                       says Caroline. “We have told them about the competition and even some local
                       authorities have given us a link.”

                       Links from government sites can be powerful. This might be because Google trusts
                       them more, or just that government sites get lots of quality links themselves and
                       therefore have a lot of link power to pass on. Caroline publishes many entries online,
                       which helps to keep children and parents logging on to see if their work is in the
                       gallery. The prizes are top-selling products along with SpottyGiftBoxes vouchers for
                       their school.

                       The link-bait exercise hasn’t come without its problems, however. “The thing that we
                       did discover, however, is that a lot of these links haven’t given us the benefits we had
                       hoped because the links are on password protected sites or intranets. I think we need
                       to do a little more work to assess just how successful this has been, but regardless, it’s
                       been a good process to build up contacts with schools and parents.”

                       As her website is product based Caroline says this has meant link building has been
                       the most difficult part of the SEO process. “It’s hard because you have to give people
                       a reason to link to you, and I think it’s much easier for an information site than for a site
                       like us. It’s been a challenge to get people to link to what is essentially a shop site, and
                       that’s why we have been looking at competitions and things that people can interact
                       with, and that our customers will find useful.




Wordtracker.com                             Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 59



                                                                  Prepared exclusively for John-Paul Orr
Case Study | Spotty Gift Boxes



                       “We are still in the learning process of knowing how best to do our SEO but it’s the one
                       thing I don’t think we’ve done as well as we could have but it’s certainly something we
                       aim to get better at in the future. It’s easy to find a month has gone by and you haven’t
                       done much in the way of link building.”



                       A lack of SEO clarity
                       Caroline has also found the commentary that surrounds SEO to be quite confusing as
                       there is “a lot of mythology over absolute truth,” as she explains.

                       “It’s very rare that someone from one of the search engines makes a clear statement.
                       It’s all a question of interpretation and then of course you have lots of websites and
                       blogs from people who then apply their own interpretation to SEO. Sometimes you
                       feel as though you aren’t really sure that what you are doing is going to benefit your
                       site and it’s that level of uncertainty that makes me feel very wary.”



                       5-step SEO process
                       Caroline has devised her own five-step SEO process that she feels gives her
                       confidence in making her site more search engine friendly.


                       1. I think about my synonyms and I find all the words I can that
                       relate to my product.

                       2. I then do keyword research to see how many searches I have and
                       make sure it’s on UK only because that’s where I’m targeting. I do
                       this for the obvious words and the synonyms.

                       3. I evaluate the words and then I choose the title tag. Even before
                       I start writing I get the title tag right, and that’s done with two keywords. Typically I
                       will make one keyword very specific and 100% relevant to my product, and then the
                       second one will be a little more competitive, or it may in some cases be a variation on
                       the first one. For example in the Wine Accessories section I sell wine bottle coolers.
                       For one I used the title tag ‘Vacuvin Wine Cooler, Vacu Vin Rapid Ice’ to pick up both
                       the generic term for wine cooler and the brand name with and without a space. Brand
                       names are great for optimizing because people who search a brand generally have a
                       high conversion rate.


                       4. Then I start writing and I aim to get my keywords into first
                       paragraph and in the right order with the strongest ones at the beginning. Even



Wordtracker.com                            Keyword Rich. 12 Business Success Stories in Search Engine Marketing | 60



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                       though I don’t think people read the whole page they will read the first paragraph so
                       it’s really important and takes me a long time to get it right. I put my keywords or a
                       combination of them in my internal links, and tags will have keywords in there too.


                       5. Then I use the keyword research to choose what I want for any
                       AdWords campaign

                       Lastly, Caroline says her top tip to anyone who has started a website and wants to
                       begin keyword research is to use the above process for every product and for every
                       page no matter what. “It would be so easy for me to throw stuff up on the web and it’s
                       tempting, especially when you have a new product in, but if you do that you will never
                       go back and optimize it. Doing it right from the start means your entire site is search
                       engine friendly.”




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                       The Wordtracker Academy
                       Free articles, case studies, tips and tricks to help you grow your online business
                       through effective keyword research and search engine optimization.

                       Gain a clear advantage over your competitors by becoming an expert at search engine
                       optimization and keyword research. We’ve commissioned some of the world’s best
                       online marketing and SEO professionals to be your guides.

                       Go to the Wordtracker Academy




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