Shopify SEO Case Study
248% YoY Increase in Organic Traffic and Still Growing
How do you get your products in front of motivated buyers when REI and Amazon dominate the Google search results? What kind of content will consistently attract new people to your brand? Are there hidden issues sabotaging your SEO success? These are the challenges that Trail Kitchens came to me with in early 2017.
Trail Kitchens is a leading manufacturer of camping kitchen gear based in Truckee, California. Their innovative products are lightweight, compact, and very popular with the overlanding and #VanLife communities as a result.
In addition to a nationwide dealer network, Trail Kitchens operates a 300+ page Shopify store which gives them the ability to sell direct-to-consumer. DTC sales channels can be highly profitable, but they rarely work without a truly amazing product and a sophisticated digital marketing strategy.
Trail Kitchens knew they were missing out on product searches which meant they were missing out on sales. Without knowing which keywords to target and how to integrate them into their website, they were stuck.
After doing a deep dive audit of their Shopify site, researching keywords and their competitors, and exploring their analytics, the problem became clear. Product and collection pages weren't fully-optimized, there were glaring keyword gaps that needed to be filled, and the site wasn't following technical SEO best practices.
As a growing brand, Trail Kitchens needed a sustainable SEO strategy designed to scale with them as sales increased. There were dozens of levers to pull, but our strategy focused on the ones that would have the biggest impact:
- Technical SEO - Site structure adjustments, internal link optimization, structured data implementation, image optimization, site speed improvements, monthly audits.
- Keyword Optimization - Keyword research, competitive intelligence, product and collection page optimization, target keyword tracking, continuous optimization.
- Content Marketing - Evergreen blog posts, video content for YouTube, data-informed product releases, value-adding content to continuously attract new customers.
- Premium Backlinks - Gear reviews from major outdoor publications, active engagement in niche communities, influencer outreach, product giveaways.
With our strategic roadmap in hand, we began implementation in April 2017. Over the following months, we saw a noticeable increase in organic traffic and conversions. Two years later, Trail Kitchens is still enjoying the compounding effects of SEO.
Kevin's SEO strategy has increased our organic traffic exponentially over the last two years. He's honest, highly analytical, and his guidance and explanations have been first rate. I would recommend Kevin's services to any Shopify store seeking to grow its Google visibility and e-commerce activity.
Since I started working with Trail Kitchens in early 2017, organic traffic has increased exponentially, their social audience and email list have exploded, and several publications, including Outside Magazine and Gear Junkie, have written glowing product reviews. Today, organic search is the #1 driver of ecommerce activity, contributing to 60% of all online sales. The sky seems to be the limit for this awesome outdoor gear brand and it's been an honor to be a part of their growth.
2017 vs. 2018 Performance
Keys to Success
Trail Kitchens' founder, Hans Wain, is an engineer by trade, so the data-driven, creative nature of SEO has always been attractive to him. He just needed to find someone he could trust to guide him through the process of developing and executing a sustainable SEO strategy. His products and his brand have done the rest.
What's your conversion rate? How much revenue is your blog generating? Where do you rank for your most important keywords? Successful Shopify store owners have the analytics to answer these questions. We've had a robust digital measurement plan in place from the very beginning, empowering us with actionable insights and informing our decisions along the way.
We review our analytics data on a monthly basis and revisit our strategy once a quarter. This cadence serves us well. It allows us to keep a close eye on our performance, proactively address problems, and adjust our strategy with the constantly changing SEO landscape. Like any great adventure, we never leave home without a map and a plan.
As Google's algorithms get smarter, it's becoming increasingly difficult to "sneak" your way into the search results where you don't belong. You can't SEO your way out of a bad product, and mediocre content will only make matters worse. Fortunately, Trail Kitchens is a purpose-driven company and their products are truly remarkable, so we haven't had to bother with shady SEO tactics.