Our client, Venture Richmond, needed to increase visibility in the form of traffic to newer additions to their website, specifically “Live” pages that highlighted the various neighborhoods around the city of Richmond. Venture Richmond marketers were working to update the content across the entirety of their website, while Workshop Digital marketing specialists were conducting content audits for each individual “Live” page to inform the best possible keyword and SEO practices were being used in new content creation.
Our main goal was to ensure these updates and any new content aligned what Venture Richmond was presenting with Google’s criteria for helpful content.
Since the content we were optimizing was extremely localized, it contained keywords specific to the individual Richmond neighborhoods each page serviced. Many of these terms didn’t have the type of search volume we normally would use to set benchmarks and milestones. This meant we were going to have to rely on the initial performance of our optimization efforts to set standards moving forward.
To help audiences find the desired pages on Venture Richmond’s website, we started by conducting individual SEO content audits for each “Live” page, while also ensuring that they had the same structure as each other. Among the items we checked for in these audits were:
Header Tags - Ensuring these were present and following the correct structure for each “Live” page to make it easier for search engines to understand what information was present, with copy that is accurate, descriptive, and invites engagement.
Link Quality - Checking on all inbound links, if present, to maintain a high standard.
Duplicate Content - Removing any instances of content that may be used in another location on the website.
Thin Content - Recommending additional content where there are opportunities to make the information present more valuable to people searching for that type of content.
Structured Data and Schema Markup - Further organizing and labeling information on pages to pull the most useful and compelling content through to search engine result pages.
This approach allowed us to create specific recommendations for keywords rather than general keywords for all of the pages to avoid keyword cannibalization. We focused on relevant terms with a search volume threshold to better improve the impact of the program. This included terms that also helped raise awareness for the individual establishments, like restaurants and shops, present in each neighborhood.
Among the other tactics that garnered the best results were ensuring similar structure across all pages to aid Google searches, and internal links to other established or popular pages on the Venture Richmond website and beyond.
The initial improvements started to impact traffic in January 2023, and the numbers have continued to rise each month since then. This progressive growth that the strategies we put in place were having the intended results, validating the importance of providing helpful content to align with Google's definition of this type of content.
By March of 2023, we started seeing even bigger gains:
And by June 2023, traffic increases further showed the impact of these changes:
Organic searches are also steadily rising, as we see here through June 2023:
Using our audit as a primary guide for areas of opportunity, we were able to identify the right updates to make to Venture Richmond’s pages to get the maximum impact in the shortest period of time.
As with any SEO initiative, it still took time for the changes to register with search engines, but because we took a data-based approach to the keywords and terms we were targeting, results were noticed sooner than usual.
Since the implementation of our updates to the “Live” pages, we’ve also seen the average pages per session increase over those from last year, validating that visitors to the website are indeed the correct audience as they explore more of their interests across the site.