Discount River Rocks - A year in SEO
What do you get when you combine, decorative stone, bulk hauling, and teamwork? Discountriverrock.com
It’s not often we pay attention to the backbone work that makes America the great country that it is. When you enter a grocery store, do you ever think about the process that a single head of broccoli went through to end up in your shopping cart. Discount River Rocks is the same concept, you may see bags of Stone at Home Depot or decorative pebbles at your local dinner but you don’t often think what the steps were which brought those rocks to their final destination. Here at Mad Mango Marketing we understand and appreciate the hard work that all blue collar workers do everyday. That is why working with Christopher, the owner of Discount River Rocks, has been such a pleasure.
Our relationship with this stone wholesaler began in 2018 when Christoper asked for a consultation on his website. The Mango team gave their thorough review of the website and saw a place of great opportunity for Christoper. The wholesale stone industry is oversaturated with outdated websites from the 2000s with contact forms that are barely intact. On top of that, these sites contain little to know information about decorative stone, how to acquire it, and just general uses for their products. Realizing this potential room for growth was the initial step in our relationship with Christopher.
After an in-depth explanation of SEO and how it works was presented, Christopher easily grasped the importance and long term potential of hard work. Now that we were all on the same page. We were able to begin implementing our suggestions from the initial website audit.
Our first step was to better understand Christopher’s business. To do this we had to immerse ourselves in the stone trade. We learned many things while researching but the most important takeaway was the language these informative blogs were using. Next, we asked Christopher to identify a few of his competitors so we could get a deeper understanding of the industry and look for gaps where no great content had been written yet. We identified a few commonalities in language across information on other websites.
The next step in our analysis was to utilize Google Trends. We started by comparing some search terms to determine what our keywords should be when writing content.
The Mad Mango Team compared words commonly used into Christophers industry above to give us an idea of what users are searching for.
Our next step was optimizing Christopher’s front and back end of his website as much as the website builder would allow us. Our process began with an assessment of the on-page content.
First we look at a website through a UX lens which stands for “User Experience.” You can add all the bells, whistles and widgets you want but ultimately if your site is too crowded with information or options it becomes difficult to make decisions or navigate through a website. When creating or restructuring a website behavior flow should be kept in mind. Ask yourself, what is the main goal of my website? For Christopher, his objective was to drive traffic to fill out his lead form or make a phone call. So in each page there has to be a call link or contact form to do just that.
When focusing on optimizing what goes on behind the scenes of Christopher's website we need to focus on several main things: meta descriptions, alt tags, internal links, page speed. This is extremely important. Christopher site has over 200 pages, which means there are 200 “meta descriptions” These meta descriptions should be between 50-160 characters. You want to be sure they describe the purpose of the page and that your description is less than 160 characters to ensure the description does not get cut off.
Now that we have created a good foundation for Christopher on the backend of his website. We were ready to begin the next prong of our SEO approach, content creation. The MMM takes the time to learn about all of our clients industries to the best of our ability. We do this through independent research, interviews, and one-on-one meetings with our clients to better understand specifics in their business. However, some things are out of our scope of expertise. In cases like these we reach out to industry specific writers to give our clients higher quality content people want to read. We relay the topic of the blogs, along with focal keywords we have chosen with Christopher, and get back to him over the next couple weeks with drafts of the blog to either be approved or denied.
While monitoring Christophers keyword movement and traffic, we noticed his website was getting a lot of visitors searching for things related to “flagstone.” So we took this momentum and began writing several blogs about the topic like the one below.
Since we have created these great pieces of content it would be a shame for them to not get the attention they deserve. While most social media platforms offer “no-follow links” they are still an important factor to our SEO strategy. Google wants to see that your business is interactive with our customers and has the ability to be personal. Actively sharing your announcements, questions, updates and blog posts onto all of your social media accounts is a great way to drive more traffic to your website. Take a look a look below to see an example of what a syndicated post looks like on medium.com
Guest Post Outreach
Guest Posting is a key component to a successful SEO strategy. Guest posting is exactly what it is led to be, an article written by a guest author on a website other than your own. Guest posts can be collaborations with another site, a piece of content you submit, or even an embedded video. The most important thing to do when guest posting is to ensure you have some relevant anchor text (hyperlink) which when clicked will send users to your site. Ideally you want to keep your guest post industry specific. For Christopher’s industry we would never reach out to someone in the food industry to link back to our site, because that simply wouldn’t make sense. Instead we reach out to sites related to landscaping and gardening since the two industry’s work in conjunction with one another. Check out an example of a guest post below.
Another way we try to earn backlinks for our clients responding to Journalist requests in our industry. Using a service known as “Help A Reporter Out” or Haro. We have been able to connect Christopher with the interviewer, provide them with an expert in the field for the content they are looking for. In exchange for the information we are given a backlink referring to our website.
Time Of The Year
Not every business thrives during all times of the year. Christopher’s business’ specifically finds it’s most success in the spring and summer months when more people are landscaping across the country. This makes it extremely important to write content that relates to the change of times in his industry. Another important factor to mention about proper content management would be to keep content fresh. Google enjoys seeing a website who tries to serve the most accurate information to its users, and all things eventually become outdated. So websites that are constantly changing out links and setting up redirects to fix broken links will be rewarded by Google alot more often.
Thank you for reading this analysis this far. To conclude I would like to share with you some of the great results and progress we have made with Christopher’s company just far. We have had a great time working with Christopher and are happy to have helped with the growth of his business. Take a look at the raw numbers. We will continue to blaze a trail for Christopher along with all of our other clients. If you are looking for an SEO agency to help your business explode in the same way, contact the Mad Mango team.
Wednesday, October 21, 2020
Discount River Rocks - A year in SEO
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