RV Dealership SEO Case Study
As an RV Dealer, you may be curious if SEO can increase your visibility in Google's search results and drive traffic to your website. The answer is yes, it can, as this case study shows.
Google Ads vs. Search Engine Optimization
Our case study starts with an existing RV Dealer client asking if we could drive traffic to their website using SEO instead of expensive Google Ads and provide a higher ROI (Return on Investment). We would need to return a higher ranking in the search results and at a lower cost than using PPC (Pay Per Click) marketing.
We have handled the client's website for many years, and the website already had an Authority Score (Semrush's equivalent of DA or Domain Authority) of 30 when we started. It had plenty of backlinks, with frequent content updates, and was generally "trusted" by Google. This made for a great starting point for us as we knew whatever we did would likely get picked up quickly by the search engines, and we expected to see the results of our SEO Campaign quickly.
RV Dealer SEO Strategy
The client proposed as a test that we increase rankings and visibility for a particular RV Brand and product line, concentrating on the most popular models within that line. As with any client we take on, we developed a carefully crafted SEO strategy using the basic fundamentals of SEO...
How are your customers searching for the products you are selling? We needed to know if prospects were searching by Brand + Line, Brand + Model, or Brand + Line + Model.
Research revealed that overwhelmingly RV buyers were searching for Brand + Line. In fact, they searched this way 5 times more than any other combination. That gave us our target keyword phrase for day one of the campaign. Other combinations of keyword phrases that, while a lower volume, were still significantly large enough to make them a future target we would handle in the coming months, prioritizing based on search volume.
Understanding what words prospects use to search is critical for an SEO agency to understand before they implement digital marketing strategies for your RV dealership.
Next, we looked at existing content both on our client's site and on the highest-ranked competitors. That revealed that almost everyone was simply copying and pasting from the RV manufacturer's website to create their own listing pages. Duplicate content abounded and would likely not be rewarded with Google's new "Helpful Content" algorithm update.
This revealed an easy opportunity for improvement simply by writing unique text content for the dealership's website focused on the Brand + Line + Models we were targeting.
Then we looked at the existing backlink profile for our client and other RV dealerships. We were pleased to find that the client already had a pretty good backlink profile already, and we would just need to make it a little more focused on specific keyword phrases with optimized anchor text. In particular, acquiring links to the new website pages we would be building that will be Brand + Line + Model specific.
RV SEO Campaign Month by Month
Month 1 - The client already had a page focused on Brand + Line, but it didn't have a lot of depth to it, so we started out our campaign by beefing up that page with more information about the manufacturer's approach to building an RV as well as unique properties of that line. We roughly tripled the amount of information on that page and made sure to hit all of the key on-site Seo elements. Page titles, headlines, body copy, and images were all optimized to achieve the 1st page of search engines results.
While we know site visitors likely won't read the whole page, Google will, so content with the target keywords that customers use when searching were used throughout the content creation process.
While our writers worked to expand that page, we also started acquiring links to it. Since this was an existing page, we knew we didn't need a lot of links, so we focused on getting links from authoritative sites with optimized anchor text.
Month 2 - With the brand and line page done, it was time to focus on specific models. Out of the four models we were targeting in our test, we picked the two with the highest search volume and created 2 new pages on the site, one page per model. In the past, the dealership had model-specific pages, but they would come and go as models would arrive and be sold. We knew we needed a page with a URL that wouldn't change over time so that we could really detail information about the model and give Google a consistent URL that wouldn't change. Remember, it doesn't matter what page of your site ranks; you need customers to find you and want those website clicks.
So for month 2, we created 2 pages for specific models and started link acquisition for them using targeted anchor text to our new pages. We also acquired additional links to our Brand + Line page we created in month 1.
As the graph below shows, our on-site efforts were rewarded within 3 weeks as the search engines indexed and ranked our new Brand + Line page showing a near vertical improvement to the rankings.
Month 3 - Month 3 was "rinse and repeat" with us creating 2 additional pages for specific models and continuing to get links to everything we had created so far.
Rankings continued to slowly and steadily improve as our off-site efforts at link building kicked in.
Month 4 - We went back to the model specific pages and added additional photos to these pages to give them a little more impact for site visitors. We used keyword rich filenames for the photos and were sure to provide helpful alt text for the images. Less than 2 weeks later, Google search rankings improved yet again for these pages with the additional images.
Google Search Results
Before the end of month 4, our client's website rankings had moved from an average position in the 90's when we started (9th page of the search results) to an average position of 7. All the keyword phrases we had targeted were now on page 1 of the search results with 4 results in the top 5 and continuing to move higher.
Semrush's Ranking Distribution Graph Nicely shows the story of a few keywords ranking well when we started, and having all of the keyword phrases Top 10 in less than 4 months.
Website Traffic Improvements
During that early near vertical improvement to organic search results between June 8th and June 14th, traffic to the site went up a whopping 440% and continued to grow from there.
Where To Spend Your Marketing Dollars - PPC vs SEO
If you've been wondering which works best for your dealership at increasing business, we feel strongly that we've made the case for SEO providing the best results.
SEO is a long-term marketing strategy that continues to provide returns long after your investment. Unlike Google Ads, which stop working the minute you quit paying. Search Engine Journal has a great article about not putting all of your eggs in one basket by only using Google Ads.
As an SEO company, we've witnessed dealers get completely blown off of the 1st page when Google suddenly finds something wrong with their ads. That really creates a high-stress environment with everyone scrambling to find out what's wrong, and sadly Google is very poor at communicating what is making them unhappy. Do you need more stress in your dealership? Thought not.
RV Dealership Seo Experts
At BANG! Web Site Design we have years of experience in the RV Industry and can help you develop digital marketing strategies that help you make those big sales. We offer both PPC Services and Monthly SEO Services and develop some of the best SEO strategies for RV dealers.
Need more information? Give us a call today at 602-427-5626 or schedule an SEO consultation.
Here are some frequently asked questions about SEO for RV dealers
Will you provide a free consultation to assess our SEO needs?
Yes, you can start with a free SEO analysis of your current website.
What is an RV Organic Search Marketing Strategy?
Google's search results are composed of three primary components. A search results page typically starts with Google Ads at the top, which are paid ads. Research has shown that 75 to 80% of people ignore the ads and continue down to the organic results. That's why Google Ads is not our primary approach to bringing you new business.
Next is the local results. A listing of 3 to 4 results of local businesses that are close to you.
Last is 10 organic search results that are not paid but rank there due to the quality of their website, SEO expertise, and the number of links to their sites. As a local SEO company, this is where we put our clients.
What Should Your RV Marketing Strategy Include?
From an online marketing perspective, in this order...
#1 - A great website that lists your inventory and provides information about your dealership.
#2 - Your Business’s Google Business Profile should be optimized to show up in the local results.
#3 - A monthly SEO campaign that ranks your website at the top of the results.
#4 - A Google Ads campaign, while not our 1st choice, is a stop-gap measure while your SEO campaign is gaining traction. Google Ads do have the advantage of being turned up or turned off as needed to drive traffic right now or paused when it's not needed.
Want to learn more? Schedule an SEO consult here > https://bangwsd.bookafy.com/service/zoom-consult
About the Author
Brian Rideout, Chief Pixel Pusher of BANG! Web Site Design is an industry veteran (sounds better than old guy right?) who started building websites in 1996 when dial-up, modems, Netscape, and 640 x 480 resolution monitors with 256 colors were state of the art.
We stumbled into SEO by "accident" when we got a client ranked #2 on Yahoo (remember, this was the 90's) for an extremely competitive keyword phrase, and they sold out of all the products they had. With a little reverse engineering, we learned what Yahoo was looking for and applied our SEO experience to other clients and then to Google when they became the dominant search engine.
We continued to build websites for small business's in the Phoenix market as well as companies across the country. Our approach of "SEO 1st Website Design" has resulted in many businesses, particularly in the building trades such as contractors and plumbers, as well as law firms, to rank at the top of Google's results which keeps our clients supplied with a constant stream of new customers.
We continue to provide website design, website development, hosting, SEO services, and digital marketing for Phoenix companies. More information about the company can be found on our About Us page. Click the following link for examples of our award-winning website design work.