Search marketing is a tried and trusted digital marketing channel, which is why Google can rely on making several billion dollars each quarter.

Both SEO and paid search can result in huge gains when done right, so it takes something special for a campaign to stand out from the crowd.

If you've been involved in a search marketing campaign that you think is worthy of an award, then enter it into The Digitals, Econsultancy's annual awards celebrating excellence and innovation in digital marketing.

To give you some inspiration here's a round up of five entries we received last year...

Boden

Fashion retailer Boden aimed to optimise non-brand search content in order to achieve these objectives:

  • New customer recruitment.
  • Raise awareness of and drive traffic to the Boden website.
  • Improve the company's ranking in organic search.

A data-led strategy was employed using targeted non-brand SEO, link building and PPC tactics to broaden the awareness of Boden online. 

This focused on more generic keywords with significant search volumes, such as 'kaftans', 'tunics', 'babies jeans' and 'linen dress', increasing site visibility and opening the retailer to new conversion opportunities. 

Part of this involved contacting influential parent, shopping and fashion bloggers to review sample merchandise that would complement Boden’s product lines, generating high quality links.

For paid search Boden began targeting low cost long-tail traffic, in combination with more competitive generic terms that provided new search queries to grow the campaign. 

The results of the campaign:

  • 900% increase in non-brand SEO revenue over the course of the campaign (320% increase 2010-2011, 138% increase 2011-2012).
  • 2,800% ROI in SEO.
  • 53% relative increase in SEO market share versus Boden’s core competitors.
  • First page Google UK ranking for over 450 influential non-brand keywords.

Cotswold Outdoor

Weather can have a big impact on ecommerce sales, but it's difficult for brands to react quick enough to take advantage of these trends.

Cotswold Outdoors sought to improve conversions from PPC using weather data in real-time, with a minimum target of improving ROI by 10%.

The retailer works with Net Media Planet to develop a new real-time weather-based bidding application using Google Scripts for Adwords.

It ran 15 campaigns targeting five different locations and three different weather conditions to promote products in response to short term local weather changes.

The planning stage involved analysis of keyword category performance, weather-focused messaging versus brand-focused messaging, and the conditions at which most products were sold in each region.

After launching the campaign in October 2012 Cotswold Outdoor achieved the following results:

  • ROI increased by 41%, easily beating the 10% target.
  • Revenue increased by 29%.
  • AOV increased by 40%.
  • CTR increased by 19%.

Dreams.co.uk

Bed retailer Dreams.co.uk aimed to improve organic search performance by dominating a set of highly competitive keywords.

The target was to deliver a CPA of under £7 and achieve a minimum ROI of 500%.

A broad list of relevant keyword clusters was outlined, alongside a strategy that aimed to increase domain authority, backlinks, and the brand's overall social presence.

Key drivers in increasing authority included engagement with high profile, genuine publishers and industry influencers.

Dreams also set about removing potentially damaging legacy links, mitigating for duplicate content and improving on-page factors.

The results were:

  • ROI peaked at 5,700% in January 2013, and remained higher than 3,000%.
  • CPA stood at £4.02 over 12 months, with lows of under £2 in July and January 2013.
  • Dreams.co.uk remains dominant for a vast array of competitive terms, across the board, with an average ranking of position two across the core volume keywords.

Legal & General

In 2013 L&G was targeting big improvements from its paid search marketing. It specifically wanted to increase clicks, average CPC, and applications for ISAs.

Search agency Greenlight conducted analysis of L&G's 2012 campaigns and research into customer behaviour in 'ISA season' (January to March).

It was then able to conduct comprehensive attribution calculations to accurately model consumer segmentation on an individual keyword level.

As a result of the campaign:

  • Clicks increased 432% with just 66% more budget.
  • CTR increases by 209%, increasing Quality Scores and contributing to a reduction in average year-on-year CPC rates by 220%.
  • Most importantly there was an increase in applications of 306% year-on-year and 400% greater ROI than 2012.

RS Components

RS Components operates a significant offline B2B operation, but recognised the need to build an online business of comparable success. 

To achieve this, RS Components set itself an ambitious challenge:

  • To deliver a 300% increase in SEO visibility in Google within just three months. 
  • To find a way to intelligently assess and release the latent SEO value of their huge inventory.
  • To achieve this utilising ethical SEO methods and limited support from internal RS teams.

It set about using a data-first approach to manage and manipulate huge keyword lists, understand the opportunity they represent, and discover what is required to make them drive profitable, commercial value.

Working with Greenlight, RS Components was able to achieve the following results:

  • 1,300% improvement in visibility in Google’s organic search results.
  • Generated more than 1,000% more SEO revenue than the site was previously achieving, representing £12m of incremental revenue from that channel.

If you want to win the marketing industry's highest award for digital excellence, make sure to enter The Digitals.

David Moth

Published 12 September, 2014 by David Moth

David Moth is Editor and Head of Social at Econsultancy. You can follow him on Twitter or connect via LinkedIn

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Daniel Taylor

Really interesting article and food for thought!

about 3 years ago

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