How We Doubled Organic Search Traffic with a Blog in 2 Years
I thought you had to be a rocket scientist to write content that would lead to an SEO Case Study. After all, 828 Real Estate was my first SEO client post-graduate, and who is really reading a blog from a real estate agency in the Appalachian Mountains of North Carolina?
Well, I was wrong. I certainly did not expect to double organic search traffic within 2 years and I especially did not think it would be possible with a website’s blog.
Remember, Not All SEO for Websites & Blogs is Equal
Over the past two years, we have found a few strategies specific to blogging for real estate that got real traction on 828 Real Estate’s website. With consistency and hard work, can you guess what happened next?
Heck yeah! We started to see results from increased search traffic. I’m here to share the 3 main strategies for the blog we focused on to see breakthroughs in search results so that you can use them to increase your website’s traffic.
As with all things SEO, it’s important to note that not all websites and blog content are created equally, things that worked for us might not work for you. However, we implemented several strategies in this case study that you can apply to almost any website with a blog and even your personal brand!
The SEO Starting Point for 828 Real Estate
Back when we first started together, 828 Real Estate was:
- Publishing monthly newsletters to their blog
- Sending biweekly or monthly email newsletters to their clients
- Managing their social media internally
The 828 Real Estate website had no analytics tracking when we started our project. Before we started blogging regularly and with a solid strategy, they were generating around 800 users per month. About 250 of those users were from organic searches.
There were some blogs published on the website. Most of the blogs were primarily newsletters with only a few sentences to read. The other blogs were not original to the website and were published in multiple places across the website. This posed duplicate content issues as the blogs were published to multiple different real estate agency websites across the country.
Setting the Blog Up for Success
The team at 828 Real Estate was already working hard to create consistent content for the business, so it was clear they would be able to write incredible blogs with the right tools. The real project we had though was taking existing content from the newsletters, improving, and expanding upon them over time.
We started by reviewing all the content assets on the blog. Since none of the newsletters on the blog got consistent traffic, we unpublished a large majority of the content on their blog, but not before noting any of the topics previously written about.
The blogs we removed were 301 redirected and left as drafts on the website so we could refer back to them again with future content.
3 Techniques that Helped Organic Search Traffic Growth
From here we categorized all the topics into content pillars relevant to the real estate industry and region. By the end of the blog setup and categorization, we had several months of content ideas that were incredibly valuable for driving SEO.
Here are the main 3 techniques we used to help grow organic search traffic from 2020 – 2022.
#1: Regular Weekly Publishing of SEO-Driven Content
From the content calendar, we made with the newly-drafted blogs, we worked with the team at 828 Real Estate to create and regularly publish weekly SEO-Driven content. SEO-driven content is based on keyword opportunities in the region and niche.
Finding keyword opportunities from existing content and researching relevant related keywords can help you pick topics to write about with various levels of ranking competition. We did in-depth keyword research to find the best opportunities and picked medium-to-high-traffic keywords with low competition to create content around each week.
We also used Google Trends to predict keywords where traffic was on the rise and suggest other blogs around them as well. The real magic behind SEO lies where a single piece of content can rank for thousands of keyword variations.
As we created 4 pieces of content each month over 2 years, they all started to rank for many different keywords. In total, we created 96 pieces of content over two years. It takes a few months for each blog to start ranking, but once it does we see source traffic from most.
Between 2021 and 2020 those 96 posts on the blog helped to increase organic search traffic sessions by nearly 140%. In 2022, 828 Real Estate lowered the average blog posts they made per year but was still able to increase traffic from search engines.
The big thing with content is it doesn’t have to produce every day or even every week. Now with content that ranks well and is optimized, 828 Real Estate is able to slow down its content production to once or maybe twice a month while maintaining search traffic numbers.
#2: Internal Linking Strategy
As 828 Real Estate’s library of blogs grew, we knew we needed an internal linking strategy for posts. After our content audit, we went through existing posts and added internal links to anchor text.
We use a hand full of internal links in every blog post that targets keywords from other posts and provides more information on the subject matter. We still like to include external links from other sources in our content but find the internal links are better at establishing site architecture that search engines can crawl to find all pages on a website.
To keep links from getting buried on the site we add internal links to every new post and review previously published content to add the new blog’s link to.
WordPress’s search feature for posts makes it easy to find blogs that include keyword phrases. Making a point to do this after every blog is published will help you keep your internal linking strategy intact without backlogging recently published links.
#3: Annual Content Audits
Every year we work with 828 Real Estate to complete an annual content audit. The point of this review is to ensure our website is full of relevant content. That includes updating text that might relay information from the year before and determining what pages are performing the best and what ones may need some reworking.
Our content audits find:
- Content to improve on the website
- New opportunities for future content
- Ways to boost overall site performance
With the audit are able to find weak-performing or missing content to plan for the annual content calendar. You learn more about some of the ways we improve website SEO to see what we include in our audit checklist.
How Real Estate Agencies Can Build their SEO Internally
After we set 828 Real Estate up with a solid on-site SEO strategy, we helped them identify ways to incorporate SEO into their real estate agency’s internal business processes. Aside from writing regular blog posts, this team has continued their email newsletter and increased their generation of off-site external reviews on sites like Google My Business.
With consistent publishing of content optimized for organic search, 828 Real Estate is actually helping us improve its visibility, gain a competitive edge, and reach more potential clients. Proper SEO activities generated by your company and an expert partner like Outer Banks Media can influence how your website on search rankings and drive more traffic to your website.
That’s how 828 Real Estate is using SEO for long-term visible growth and why SEO is one of the best ways to promote your business online.