Almost every week, I have someone on a sales call ask me if Shopify is good for SEO. There are countless eCommerce platforms, and they want to know if they are betting on the right one. I’ve helped multiple clients take their Shopify store from launch to 7 figures a year, and we keep getting faster at the process. Today I want to highlight a Shopify SEO campaign I did in conjunction with Blend Mode Digital out of Franklin Tennesse.
For this case study, I am going to go behind the scenes on how we grew our client from having no SEO presence to receiving over 50,000 organic visitors each month.
Until the client retained our services, their primary traffic force was Facebook paid traffic. The goal of the campaign was to decrease advertising costs by targeting “newly diagnosed diabetic patients” and to present their offer. We explained to the client that they needed to plan on using the visitors we brought to the site for both retargeting and to also test running ads to the pixel as a look-alike audience since organic traffic only converts at about 2% on the first visit.
Because this site came to us as a small landing-page-style site we were able to skip much of the technical SEO work that we normally do and move straight into content creation and domain authority building.
Step 1 – Strategy
We started with 3 strategy calls to discuss their current funnel, their current tracking and their target demographic. Armed with data from our previous campaigns, we were able to guide the conversation and narrow our focus to their ideal customer. Our top focus was on:
- Niche Viability
- Conversion of Traffic
We also began researching the market. The diabetic niche is well-established. Their ultimate desire was to rank on page one of Google for “Diabetic Lancets”. Despite this being a well-established niche, we discovered that they were serving an under-tapped niche. We can see from the low Keyword Difficulty (KD) score that there are a lot of opportunities.
Furthermore, with 1.4 million Americans diagnosed with diabetes every year, they are in a growing niche.
Despite the low difficulty score, we also needed to be cognizant that they were in a Your Money or Your Life (YMYL) niche. Since the Medic update wiped out sites like Dr. Axe, we knew that we would need to make a tremendous effort to create strong medically-relevant authority signals for the algorithm. This factor makes the niche slightly more competitive than basic keyword tools demonstrate.
We also identified their closest competitors. This company offers a strong Unique Selling Proposition in both product quality and convenience. However, there are alternate products on the market, and identifying these other products gave us more insight into marketing to this group of customers.
Step 2 – Keyword Research
After our initial niche evaluation, we needed to hone in on a keyword research campaign that would deliver. We prioritized questions that were being poorly serviced by the existing results in Google. Some of these had low KD scores, while others were popular questions on diabetic forum threads that were long and difficult to navigate.
We also did a lot of research around the competition, identifying search terms that we could leverage. Many of these keywords were common buying questions in the middle-of-funnel. By answering those questions, we were then able to offer our product as a viable alternative.
By creating answers to under-served queries, we were able to immediately gain faster traction for the client.
Step 3 – Content Creation
During this 9-month process, 60 articles were written, reviewed and published on the site. Our content-creation process is more in-depth than most agencies. Our goal is that each article we publish is running like a finely-tuned engine and has a strong likelihood of ranking in Google.
Before writing any content, one of our SEO specialists reviewed the top-20 results in Google and looked at each article outline, making notes of heading structures and unique points that would be important to cover. Related primary literature on scholar.google.com was also pulled in, with instructions on how to work this information into the content.
For this content, we worked with a Doctor and a Nurse to help create each article. Each article then went to our in-house editor to review for both SEO optimization and for readability.
Finally, the content went to the client for review. Once reviewed, it was published on the site. Most of these articles were indexed quickly in Google, thanks in part to the large amount of social traffic the site was receiving.
Each title tag and meta description was optimized prior to launch to give the article the best chance. We also focused on making them engaging to increase the click-through rate.
While most SEO agencies offer a “blogging” or “content creation” service as part of their total package, our ability to deliver this large number of traffic with only 60 posts demonstrates our commitment to a higher level of content quality.
Step 4 – Brand Building
No SEO campaign is complete without a strong site promotion campaign. In the first few months, we focused on fleshing out their location information and making sure their business was listed on sites such as Dun & Bradstreet and Inc.com. While most SEO agencies are quick to add a client to their YEXT services, we go a lot deeper with relevant listing to establish the brand.
We also worked with several graduate students to help get their brand mentioned on .edu sites. Receiving strong, contextual and relevant .edu links was part of our campaign to establish their trust in Google.
By the end of the first 90 days, we were beginning to see strong traffic signals indicating that they were performing well in search. At this point, we began a strong brand push. We wanted this brand discussed in forums, in blogs and in the newspapers. Our goal was to create 3-year’s worth of “buzz” in 9 months.
While it is easy to create an increase in referring domains for a site, we wanted each mention to be brand-focused and inside a relevant article. We took great pains to evaluate each potential promotional partner to determine:
- Is this site relevant to our client?
- Is the traffic demographic relevant to our client?
- Is the site trusted by Google?
- Does the site have other good-quality websites talking about it?
- Can we partner on a specific article that will be closely related to our niche?
At the end of the 9-month period, the client had achieved their goals of diversifying its Facebook pixel and creating a secondary channel of traffic. They were ranking for 1,454 keywords on page 1 of Google.
They were even ranked number 1 for their coveted “Diabetic Lancets” term.
This “moat” of protection has stayed with the website even as it has gone through rebranding.
Today, they continue to rank on page 1 of Google for “Diabetic Lancets”, a testimony to how good SEO will continue to yield benefits, long after the active campaign has been concluded.