How to increase search traffic by 400% through content and optimization

Original author: Courtney Eckerle
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One B2C company has been developing its business since 2000 and relied solely on regular customers and word of mouth.

Business growth was driven by a natural influx of customers, “without any strategy to attract potential customers and grow the business,” said Jessica Carstens, Marketing Manager, Cartelligent.

In order to start attracting new customers, regardless of word of mouth and repeat sales, Cartelligent has seriously redesigned its strategy for content marketing and seo.



Cartelligent helps its customers buy or rent any new car, without cooperation with dealers. “On most online car buying sites, Carsten explained, the dealer just buys customer information, but nothing is said about leasing programs, lending, or car exchange options.”

“We give a living person - an automotive expert who will guide you through the entire process of buying a car. This person will give advice and help you choose the best car for you. After that, when you decide that you want to work with us, we can provide you with a good price, ”said Carstens.

Cartelligent buys a lot of cars and gets an advantage in the form of discounts and bonuses, which are then transferred to customers. Once the purchase process is complete, the customer simply picks up his new car from the Cartelligent office. “You don’t need to come to the dealership, and you won’t run round-trips and ask:“ May I speak with my manager? ”Explained the advantages of the Carstens service.


The main problem Carstens faced was that many were unaware of the existence of a service like Cartelligent. "You must invade their daily lives or during the process of buying a car and shout:" Hey, look, we have a very cool service, check it out for yourself. "

A year ago, Carstens faced a new challenge by launching the new Cartelligent website. “We spent a lot of time and effort on this. We had an old site, which I inherited when I just started working. The site contained a lot of photos of cars, but did not inform visitors about what services the site provides and why they should be used, ”said Carstens.


In order to attract new customers, the company needed a website where visitors could see the whole process and imbue trust in the service.

“As soon as we launched our new site, we already knew that we would need to focus on search engine optimization. We have already laid this opportunity in the very structure of the new site, having appropriately placed all the content, ”she said.

Carstens knew that investing time in content development would be a serious step, especially when carrying out activities to optimize and increase customer confidence.

“We had a standalone blog, but this blog was no longer relevant. He did not bring the desired result, although we made a lot of efforts to attract new visitors there. With the new site, we immediately focused on how to attract and interest visitors with the service. ”

Carstens began to publish more often content about buying cars. If before there was one publication per month, now the material was published 1-2 times a week. She also began to integrate keywords in both new and old publications.

Step # 1: Respond to popular content requests

Most Cartelligent posts are based on Google searches, for example:

• I'm running out of leasing, what should I do?
• Which cars are the safest?
• What specifications should I look for?
• Top ten family cars?
• I want to exchange my car, what should I do?

“We prepared a lot of content, where we answered questions that interest potential buyers. We hoped that when people saw these articles, they would say, “Oh, great, this is useful information,” she said.

In addition to questions from the search engine, Carstens received ideas for the blog from employees who interacted with customers. “Quite often, the manager could come up and say something like,“ A lot of clients come to me who ask about monitoring blind spots. This seems like a hot topic. You can make a good blog post from this, ”she said.


At the end of each article was a small block in which the visitor was encouraged to get a consultation, proceed with the purchase or learn more information.

From the moment the site was created and opened, Carstens said that “she had more time to focus on developing and posting articles. We had a small media plan where the topics we wanted to reveal were highlighted. ”

Carstens herself writes articles for the blog, but she uses sources that help her to better understand the topic. For example, if she writes about the TOP 10 best cars, she receives information about the most popular brands and turns to specialists who are fluent in this issue.

“If I write about a trade-in, I turn to a trade-in manager who will provide me with professional information that I don’t have.”

At the same time, other employees of the company study and edit, if necessary, each publication. Also, in addition to weekly publications, Carstens does a monthly newsletter, which collects all the posts for the month.

Step number 2. Insert keywords into content

“When you look at a website, there is usually little information on every page. There is a lot of empty space that helps to better perceive information. Therefore, it is the blog that is the main place where you can integrate keywords and do it well in the context of the topic of the blog, ”she said.

Carstens began by reworking old content in order to refresh and optimize it for the necessary key needs. “Content for the site was being prepared from scratch ... We moved and reworked the posts that were on the old site,” she said.

When content was created or migrated from an old site, Carstens scanned it for keywords related to the content topic.

“We spent a lot of time working through the structure of the site and browsing the content, looking for any opportunity to integrate keywords so that they look organic,” she continued.

Carstens cited an example with the words “online” and “leasing” - the key queries the company worked most on. “If you look at where visitors go from search results, you will see that many go directly to the main page, which is very cool. I love the main page. Obviously, the best conversion is on our main page. We also achieve good conversion rates from blog posts, ”she said.

Carstens constantly monitors what queries people type in search engines. When the new site just appeared last year, the main request was Cartelligent.

“We adore people who are looking for us by company name. However, now we have many specific requests related to car brands that bring people to our site. This suggests that we are working well to ensure that people come to us who are looking for information about buying a car, ”said Carstens.

Step number 3. Post content in social. networks


Carstens also set up remarketing in social media. Facebook, Linkedin, Google Plus, Twitter, and StumbledUpon, as well as Google Adwords contextual advertising. Thus, everyone who visited the site and was in California saw contextual advertising for 30 days.


“We hoped that if you see the blog, and have not yet decided whether it’s worth your attention now, we’ll be in your field of vision so that you someday say:“ This is a really worthwhile question to delve into, ”said she.

Regarding the use of StumbledUpon, Carstens said, “We get less conversion from there, but it's a good way to get people who want to learn more about buying a car. It gives an excellent surge in traffic in the first few weeks after publication. ”

Step number 3. Integrate content into email newsletters

In addition to social. networks, Carstens began to receive more replies to the monthly newsletter to its customers, which contains more detailed information.


"People write in response," Thanks for the article. I really liked it ”, or“ did you think to write something else? ”. It's always nice to get customer feedback on what we write, ”she said.

The monthly newsletter contains one detailed article, which alternates between topics (Top 10, or a review article about buying a car), as well as several articles of a smaller volume and 1-2 reviews on Yelp.


“We have nearly 250 five-star reviews on Yelp, across 5 branches. So people really love and value our service, ”Carstens said.

Testimonials on Yelp also help build trust, “we wanted people who themselves would talk about our company instead of our employees,” she said. Carstens sends letters requesting you to write a review on Yelp to those who praise the service in the questionnaire issued after the sale.

“We do ask, but don’t make, write reviews from people who usually don’t do this,” she said.


“I think this is an obvious combination of everything, but the content, I believe, helped a lot,” Carstens said of the success she achieved.

- Organic traffic from search engines has grown by 400% since the site was launched last July.

- The number of leads received from search has grown by 80%.

"Recently, leads from search have moved from third place to first, if you take the top three sources of new customers. It's a pretty important milestone for us, ”said Carstens.

If we talk about inbound marketing, it is important to understand not only what people are looking for, but also to give them the opportunity to find the information they need. “We had a pretty serious time outlay, but that is definitely what we were looking for to get a return,” Cartens continued.

“Obviously, we are getting a serious increase in search traffic because it’s something that grows on its own, while we are building up our content library. Of course, we feel that this gives us a result, and we will continue to invest our time and resources in it, ”Carstens concluded.

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