When a website already has a #1 position for some searches, particularly those using location-specific terms, it may be time to think about building on this with new SEO campaigns. Scoot Cycling Holidays, who recently commissioned some SEO work, were already sitting at the top of Google for “cycling holidays in Yorkshire” and related searches, but found that being in this position was not bringing them as much web traffic, and thus as much business, as they wanted.
Their target market is visitors from abroad, primarily those visiting Britain from the USA and Australia, who might want to take a short countryside break in the middle of a tour of major cities. As such people may not have a specific county in mind prior to their visit, they may be unlikely to type “Yorkshire cycling holidays” into Google. Furthermore, when I did some search popularity research with the location set to the US, I found that the monthly searches that include “cycling holiday” are fairly low. Thinking this was simply a case of the UK’s “holiday” being equivalent to the USA’s “vacation” I tried “cycling vacations”. Surprisingly, this was even less popular, according to Google’s Keyword Tool. After a bit more research, I found that the more commonly used term is “cycling tour”, and similar variables.
Choosing exactly which phrases to optimise the home page for was tricky for this site – they wanted to keep their position at the top for “Yorkshire cycling holidays”, and were already on page 2 for “UK cycling holidays”, which, although less popular, still brought them some traffic. “England bike tours” was the primary phrase I chose, while keeping the Yorkshire and UK cycling holidays content included so that they would maintain their positions. As the site had previously had very dilute and unfocused SEO content, the SEO for the “cycling holidays” phrases was improved by the treatment, even though they were only secondary terms. The site has since risen several places for “UK cycling holidays” and remains at position 1 for “Yorkshire cycling holidays”. It has made an entry a little further down Google’s search results for “England bike tours”, in which it could not be found anywhere prior to any treatment. As the SEO work is not yet complete, this is a promising start.
The meta keywords before the SEO treatment: the existing content was dilute and unfocused – more than half of the keywords had little relevance to the content of the page, or the SEO target. Google pays little attention to these anyway, so they were of little use, and getting in the way of the real content.