I've recently been looking at how ecommerce sites are using content, and Coggles is one that we picked out as as example. 

I've been talking to Clare Potts, Head of Search, Social and PR,  Prestige Luxury at The Hut Group, which looks after Coggles. 

Clare talked about the brand's content strategy, the part that SEO plays, and how Coggles measures content...

How long has Coggles' Life section been running?

The editorial section of Coggles has been running as long as the ecommerce site has been live, editorial content is at the heart of the Coggles brand.

How did you plan your content strategy? 

Our content strategy is focused around events and trends, not only limited to fashion but within the worlds of technology, interior design, architecture, music and more.

We aim to produce content that our customers are interested in, analysis plays a big part in our strategy as we monitor the traffic and engagement each week to ensure we are always learning and evolving.

What does your content team look like?

At the moment, the Coggles content team is small but perfectly formed.

A tight knit group of experienced writers and bloggers contribute to the content with the help of the buyers and brands.

We work closely with other members of the team and brands around key events, such as London Fashion Week, to produce behind the scenes content and interviews to go that extra mile for our customers.

What are the aims behind Coggles' content? 

We aim to educate, engage and entertain. Each piece of content on Coggles is created with the purpose of adding value to each person who reads it, whether it is helping them to buy jeans online or inspiring them to try a new recipe this weekend. 

How important is SEO in the context of your content strategy?

SEO is key within the Coggles content strategy, each content piece is optimised for organic search and supported via other marketing channels within the business to ensure maximum coverage. 

How do you track and measure SEO targets?

As an ecommerce business, revenue is one of the key targets we aim to achieve but engagement,  social shares and unique visitors are also key.

We have in-house data analysts and Business Intelligence teams who we work with very closely to constantly optimise and enhance our content.

You seem to be going for 'brand building' content, rather than the hard sell. Can you explain the thinking behind this?

There are two sides to Coggles, one side focuses on building the brand and creating an engaging, editorial content environment for our customers, whereas the other side is technically optimised and focused on driving revenue.

These two sides work harmoniously together, both within the team and on-site. 

You don't seem to use (or link to) content from Life in other areas of the site. For example, the jeans buying guide might fit well in the jeans section of the store. Is this something you've tested and decided against, or something you plan to do? 

The buying guides and interviews are always linked within the category and brand pages, but we are working on a project with Design and the UX team to produce additional functionality to allow us to create more in-depth pages that will seamlessly merge the editorial and e-commerce sides of Coggles.

How do you measure the success of content? 

Unique visitors and engagement are key but as Coggles is an ecommerce business, revenue is one of the major factors to measure the success of the editorial content featuring products.

Pure editorial content, for example the recipes and travel guides, aim to add value and supplement other areas of the site which we measure by engagement, unique visitors and social shares.

How much traffic comes to the content section compared to the ecommerce site?

In comparison, the traffic to the editorial section of Coggles is a smaller than the e-ommerce side of the site but it is vital to growth and engagement of the site as a whole.

It is an invaluable asset for the site, something that sets us apart from the competition and means that customers keep coming back, whether it’s to pick up a piece from the new collections or to get inspiration for where to travel.

Our new Implementing Content Strategy: Digital Best Practice report, written by experienced consultant Dr Mike Baxter, provides a framework for evaluating your current content strategy and content planning processes, helping you make the most of your content in the future.

Graham Charlton

Published 25 May, 2015 by Graham Charlton

Graham Charlton is the former Editor-in-Chief at Econsultancy. Follow him on Twitter or connect via Linkedin or Google+

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