The client

Internet Gardener is an award-winning retailer of garden furniture, gardening tools and more. Since starting life as a small, grassroots business in 2006, they have grown impressively and become one of the UK’s most trusted online retailers in their industry. In 2013, they opened the largest garden furniture showroom in the East Midlands and have continued to go from strength to strength since then.

The challenge

Internet Gardener wanted Impression to facilitate further growth through organic traffic. They wanted us to help them achieve a year on year increase in organic revenue, which would be supported by links and coverage gained across a wide range of trade, consumer and national publications.

The space that Internet Gardener operates in is competitive. They are competing with other well-known brands for the attention of homeowners who are looking to improve their properties, hobby gardeners and trade gardeners who need top quality tools and products. In particular, a key segment of their consumer audience is people with a large disposable income who are looking for high-end furniture.

Internet Gardener faced fierce competition in the SERPs from the likes of Tesco and Wayfair. While big brands can be difficult to outrank, we noted that Internet Gardener was competitively priced and their UI functioned well. What held them back was a lack of authority, both in the SEO sense and also more broadly as a brand of choice amongst consumers.

The strategy

Our strategy was therefore focused on building authority, specifically:

  1. To build on page authority by creating silos of content that showcased expertise and built visibility across relevant topics.
  2. To build off page authority using digital PR techniques, with a secondary benefit of brand building.

Building on-page authority with content silos

Internet Gardener’s website was very flat, with few hierarchical signals to tell Google (or users) what topics they were expert in and what keyword areas they should be visible for. To fix this, our on-page strategy involved:

  • New keyword research to better align targeting with the client’s product offering and to categorise according to their business structure.
  • A full restructure of content, creating silos relevant to product categories and building out short and long tail content to target a wide range of relevant keywords.
  • Improvement of category pages to be more effective in targeting search terms with informational intent.
  • Technical improvements throughout, including site speed recommendations and crawl efficiency improvements relating to product filters.

This had the potential to be a very risky strategy – we were asking our client to restructure their whole site. However, we worked closely with their developers and were able to deliver a smooth migration.

The improvement of category pages was particularly important because we had noted a prior decrease in category page rankings. We identified that this was due to the changing understanding of user intent amongst category related terms, where users were often seeking to make a transaction but, also, increasingly looking for information as part of their purchase decision. Our integration of informational content into the category pages facilitated this browsing behaviour and resulted in vastly improved category page rankings.

Build site authority and brand awareness through digital PR

Internet Gardener had to compete with well-known brands. However, they struggled with a low domain rating that was the result of a lack of active link building activity. We chose to utilise digital PR as a tactic to build links while also developing better brand awareness and positioning.

Our PR strategy comprised both reactive and proactive digital PR. Proactive is the term we use to describe campaigns which are planned ahead of time and where we use various tactics to create newsworthy, link-worthy content. One example is our ‘urban gardening’ campaign, in which we identified a trend using Google Trends and target audience analysis for people creating gardens in urban spaces. We used this to craft comment-driven campaigns which we sold into our target press to achieve links.

Reactive is the term we use to describe responding to journalist requests and tracking topical news. The majority of our reactive work came in the form of journalist requests for specific products, which we were able to provide information on for inclusion in their articles. We also followed trends like National Moon Day to pitch in comments that related to topic stories.

Our target publications were chosen for their ability to contribute to Internet Gardener’s domain rating, so were primarily those with a higher DR than Internet Gardener and a high level of relevance to their brand. Coverage in national press didn’t always result in followed links, but was still pursued for the brand building benefits.

The results

The results below relate to year on year increases. It’s worth noting that Internet Gardener is a highly seasonal business, where the summer months are the most important.

57%
increase in organic revenue year on year between the key months May and August
76
links and mentions across 67 unique domains with an average DR of 51
19
placements in key gardening trade publications

Find out what we can do for you

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