2X organic traffic in less than 6 months!

Success Story: Improving Website Rankings for a NYC Commercial Brokerage

SERVICES

On page SEO
Site Performance
Content
Link Building

Our agency was tapped by a New York City-based commercial real estate brokerage to help boost their online presence and get more business leads. Their website had various performance issues, low rankings and outdated content, so we had our work cut out for us. But we rose to the challenge: after 6 months of working with us, they had 10 times more keywords in the top 3 search results and double the number of leads.

THE CLIENT

The client is a small, yet well-regarded commercial real estate agency that aims to address a large variety of needs, from startups looking for their first office to businesses that are expanding or nearing a lease expiration term. Their main challenge is that they’re competing with large NYC brokerages that have much larger budgets for marketing and advertising. Given that the cost-per-click for NYC commercial real estate can go as high as $15, our client had to find different ways of boosting their business, and that’s where we came in.

THE GOAL

Our main goal was to optimize the website to improve performance, bring more traffic and get it to appear in the top search engine results. In order to achieve this, we worked on both on-page and off-page SEO, we improved or rewrote the content on the most trafficked pages of the website, we fixed internal and external linking issues, fixed sitemaps, and more. Working together as a team, our SEO specialists worked alongside content writers, link building experts and researchers to devise a custom digital strategy for the client, all the while keeping them up-to-speed and involved throughout the whole process.

RESULTS

122%

Organic Traffic Increase

10x

Relevant Keywords in Top 3 Search Results

30

New Relevant & High Quality Referring Domains

2X

Number of Leads

THE PROCESS

Since the biggest issue our client was facing was poor website performance and optimization, we came up with a tailored SEO strategy to improve the functionality and speed of their website, and fix any issues that were preventing it from ranking in the top search results. 

Our strategy was focused on 4 main areas, namely on-page SEO, website performance, backlink profile, and digital PR.

organic traffic
Organic traffic Apr- Sep vs previous period. Source: analytics.google.com

ON-PAGE SEO

Our on-page SEO efforts included redoing the keyword research for the website, improving the website content and adding new content for search pages and for SERPs (FAQ, featured snippets), optimizing the content with the Google Natural Language API, fixing keyword cannibalization issues, improving internal linking and sitemaps issues, and removing all duplicate content. Here’s what we did:

  • Re-did the keyword research 
  • Improved existing content; added new valuable content on the blog and on search pages; wrote content to get SERP features (faq, featured snippet); optimized content with Google’s Natural Language API, solved keyword cannibalization issues.
  • Fixed non-200 internal links; optimized anchor texts; increased the number of internal links.
  • Improved xml sitemaps and only kept indexable and valuable pages.
  • Removed duplicate content; disallowed low-quality pages from the robots.txt file.
Natural Language Confidence Score. Source: cloud.google.com

WEBSITE PERFORMANCE

The website was experiencing various performance issues, which we tackled to boost site speed and loading time. We fixed caching issues, resized and compressed images to speed up slow-loading pages, we combined CSS and external Javascript files to reduce the number of server requests to the website, and also deferred unnecessary Javascript snippets to improve initial page load time. Here’s what we did:

  • Full-page caching 
  • Fixed lazy loading issues and resized/compressed images; 
  • Combined CSS & Javascript files;  
  • Deferred Javascript files 
site performance
Site performance before & after optimization. Source: botify.com

BACKLINK PROFILE

We noticed that a lot of ‘spammy’ websites were linking to our client’s website, something that’s called ‘unnatural linking.’ This issue could affect the performance and domain authority of the website, so we went through all linking websites and added them to a disavow file that invalides these unwanted links. We then submitted the file in Google Search Console, so that the search engine disregards these links and doesn’t affect the website and its ranking. The disavow file contains more than 500 spammy websites, to avoid unwanted links and Google penalties.

An additional step we took to improve the backlink profile for the client was to fix issues that were unresolved after an earlier migration of the site to a new domain. This migration was not done properly, causing a lot of page redirects, but most importantly, many various backlinks were redirected to a 404 page, thus all the page link ‘juice’ from those links was lost. We fixed all the redirects and got back part of the value of the website’s old backlinks.

backlink profile
Referring domains & ahrefs rank. Source: ahrefs.com

DIGITAL PR

We wanted to further improve the backlink profile of the website, by obtaining new and relevant links from major industry publications and channels like Real Estate Weekly, Real Estate Business Online, and SquareFoot. By creating new and original real estate content for search pages and for the blog, and by refining and optimizing the existing content, we managed to get backlinks from more than 30 new domains from April to September. 

 

THE RESULTS

Our efforts resulted in some major improvements in website performance and backlink profile of our client:

  • On April 1st, we had 5 keywords ranking in the top 3 search results; by comparison, on September 30 we had 54 keywords in the 1-3 positions; 
  • The traffic value increased from roughly $3,000 in April to roughly $12,000 by the end of September;
  • The number of high-quality referring domains rose from 175 in April to 204 in September;
  • During April 1st – September 30th, the organic traffic doubled compared to the previous period.

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