Oxford Ski is a specialist winter sports holiday company, selling luxury skiing and snowboarding holidays in stunning locations across the world. After a competitive pitch, our brief was two-fold. Firstly, we were challenged to raise their search positions across a range of keywords, in turn increasing organic traffic to their site. Secondly, they were launching Japan as a brand-new skiing destination and wanted us to help them build awareness of and search demand for this unique holiday product.
This was a brief we felt ready to rise to, but there was one caveat – we had to achieve these results within a three-month timeframe. That’s a very short period of time to deliver and measure SEO gains (SEO is built through a consistent, long term strategy) but we implemented our plan at speed and delivered high impact quickly.
The main route to helping Oxford Ski raise their search visibility organically was to earn links back to the site through trusted, high authority media outlets. Our approach was quality over quantity – building relevant high-quality links that will grow in value over time. We also had limited content to play with, so we had to get creative with the stories we told to grab attention.
For us, SEO should always be holistic and natural. We worked closely with their in-house SEO team to ensure we were tracking the right keywords from the beginning so we could get a full picture of our impact at the end of the three months.
Our first focus was to make Oxford Ski’s new skiing in Japan product famous through a launch release and some envy-inducing chalet imagery. Two of the most influential travel titles – The Telegraph and The Times both covered the story (alongside many others). We were off to a good start.
Leaning on audience insight, we put our design team to task to create this graphic, which combined our audience’s love of skiing with another of their passions – food. Compelling content is crucial in gaining links back to the client’s site.
We also conducted some proprietary research into bucket lists, discovering which age group was most likely to let their hair down and experience high-octane sports and new cultures. (30 year olds were ‘champing at the bit’ to get away from the daily grind in case you were wondering). And a fashion story showcasing how skiing apparel has changed through the decades.
This constant story flow in turn led to a steady stream of coverage, and, importantly, links.
We secured 48 pieces of coverage including The Sun, Manchester Evening News and Ape to Gentleman. Those pieces included 23 links across 10 referring domains with an average DA of 51. An estimated 1m people saw the coverage which was shared over 600 times.
The links were a mix of homepage and deeper links to different sections of the site, building a rich, varied link profile for Oxford Ski.
That’s all well and good, but did it achieve the SEO gains? Yes, at the end of the three-month trial, here’s how:
• 80% of target keywords were now on Google’s page 1 and we more than doubled the number of keywords in position 1-3
• Search visibility was up 54% – the brand was being found in more searches that matter
• Organic traffic to the site was up by 29%
• Entrances and page views of the Japan product was up significantly