Local SEO Case Study:
SteelMart's 190% Increase

Google Search Console performance data for SteelMart from January 31 to April 30, 2024, showing 3.4K total clicks (+196.13%), 179.9K total impressions (+169.08%), 1.9% average CTR (+10.05%), and 34.6 average position. Queries include 'steel mart', 'steelmart', 'steelmart atlanta', and 'steel mart tucker ga' with respective clicks and impressions.

Local businesses are virtually invisible to huge portions of their customer base without a strong online presence. That’s where personalized local SEO strategies are worth their weight in gold.

Having a local SEO strategy increases the visibility of your business in the area where you operate. Though it takes time and effort, this strategy is how you get your local business to appear at the top of search engine results pages (SERPs) when local customers are in need.

Take SteelMart for example. After implementing a new local SEO strategy in early 2024, their website traffic surged by over 190%. This case study walks through their epic turnaround.

SteelMart’s Local SEO Problem

SteelMart is a leading supplier of steel products in the Southeast US. They turned to us because they knew their website and online identity was stifling their potential growth.

Google's updates led to a steady and concerning decline in SteelMart’s web traffic, which meant potential customers searching for steel suppliers in their area were increasingly looking elsewhere.

If this sounds familiar, you've come to the right place!

What Needed Fixing

The first step was identifying the main issues that plagued SteelMart’s online visibility through our specialized SEO audit, including: 

  • Thin pages (2-3 sentences of content) offered little to potential customers or search engines. Competitors with richer content were easily outranking them.

  • A lack of relevant keywords meant the right people weren't able to find SteelMart when searching for steel products in their local market.

  • Their Google Business Profile was also neglected. Outdated photos, sparse information, and a lack of recent reviews didn't establish SteelMart as a "trustworthy steel supplier."

  • SteelMart, like many businesses, struggled to bridge the gap between their marketing vision and execution. They knew they needed a stronger online presence, but lacked the in-house expertise or resources to implement an effective local SEO strategy.

Learn about the many benefits of an SEO audit.

Crafting a Digital Marketing
and Local SEO Strategy

SteelMart's needed a strategic digital overhaul with local SEO as the anchor that connected to all of their existing marketing efforts. Let’s look at some of the strategies that allowed them to reach qualified customers right in their own backyard.

SteelMart’s New Local SEO Strategy

Targeting the greater Atlanta area, we got to work with a few different local SEO tactics to help SteelMart connect with the customers right in their backyard, including:

Competitive Analysis

We started with a detailed competitive analysis to understand how and where SteelMart competitors were succeeding or falling short in their SEO efforts, including:

  • Keyword Insights: We looked at the keywords that competitors were ranking for and those they weren’t. This data helped us refine our targeting, focusing on terms that would drive the most valuable traffic. 
  • Backlink Analysis: We identified high-value websites linking to our competitors. This insight helped us develop a targeted outreach plan to secure similar backlinks, enhancing SteelMart's domain authority and search rankings. We also reclaimed recently lost links that had contributed to their traffic dropoff.  

Content Review: By analyzing competitors' top-performing content, we were able to paint a picture of the topics, formats, and depth that resonated with SteelMart's target audience. This guided our strategy for creating more valuable and engaging content and that they could use to improve their own content.

Local Intel from Google Maps

SEO heatmaps help visualize the impact of local SEO strategies by showing where the business is performing well and where there is potential to improve. It allows businesses to focus their SEO efforts more strategically to improve local search visibility and attract more customers from specific areas.

Leveraging local SEO heatmaps helped us visualize search activity across Atlanta. These heatmaps pinpointed areas with high search volume for SteelMart's target keywords. This data ensured our strategy focused on the neighborhoods where Atlanta residents were actively searching for steel suppliers.

Local SEO heatmap showing the search visibility of SteelMart in the Atlanta area. The map displays various rankings with green circles for top positions (1-2), yellow circles for mid positions (3), and red circles for lower positions (4).

In-depth Keyword Research

Using essential SEO tools like Google Search Console, Semrush, and more, we went through a comprehensive keyword research. Through this process, we uncovered specific search queries used by local customers. We also targeted high-value keywords with low competition and high search volume, effectively filling the gaps left by SteelMart competitors.

Optimizing Google Business Profiles

Refreshing their Google Business Profile included: updated information, fresh, high-quality images, and filling out every detail. This boosted their presence on Google Maps, leading to a near-instant rise in website clicks. Local customers could now find SteelMart with ease!

Content Creation and Optimization

Our earlier keyword research helped us craft on-message blog posts and optimize existing content across SteelMart’s website. This included optimizing meta tags, adding internal links, and updating page titles and URLs so that all content was as search-engine friendly as possible.

Technical SEO and Site Enhancements

We also gave their website a technical tune-up. These updates led to faster loading times, a smoother experience on phones and tablets, and a happier user experience overall. Because let's face it, nobody wants to wait around for a website to crawl when they can just tap and go.

Building Better Backlinks

Beyond the website, we secured high-quality endorsements (links) from respected local sources. These backlinks not only boosted SteelMart's search ranking, but also solidified their reputation as a trusted name in the Southeast’s steel industry. Our press releases also landed on major websites, generating valuable backlinks and boosting their SEO authority.

Example of SEO-optimized Google search results for 'SteelMart Inc. - Tucker,' showcasing engaging videos and images from both website and Google Business page.

Leveraging Media

Engaging videos and infographics weren't just eye candy. Optimized for SEO and designed to grab attention, they transformed the website into a user-friendly resource, boosting engagement with potential customers. Some examples are adding YouTube videos not only to the website but also the Google Business page.

Ongoing Optimization

SEO doesn’t align with a set-it-and-forget-it strategy. We were always monitoring the strategy’s performance and making measured adjustments based on data. The process included noting emerging trends so that SteelMart remained top-of-mind for their target audience.

Measurable Success:
The Local SEO Results

Within four months, SteelMart’s new local SEO strategy led to something of a digital renaissance. Considering the entire strategy was dictated by the data, let’s look at what the data tells us about the steel company’s newfound search engine success.

Organic search traffic analysis for SteelMart (Jan-Apr 2024) shows significant growth across key metrics, driven by successful local SEO strategies.

Increase in Google Business Page Engagement

After the SEO engagement began, there were increases in conversions (+144%) for nearly every metric across the company’s most important landing pages. Specifically direct calls and direction requests from the Google Business page rose dramatically.

The improved visibility on Google Maps meant that potential customers could find SteelMart Inc. more easily. This led to a 10% increase in phone inquiries and directions! So for every 100 conversions that came in each month, that means they received an additional ten on top of that.

This surge in conversions (1K over just 3.5 months) was a direct result of the higher rankings in local search results, particularly for high-intent queries related to the steel industry.

Boost in Form Submissions

Our focused SEO efforts successfully increased form submissions by targeting relevant keywords and enhancing the website's overall user experience. SEO is a key to increasing lead generation by attracting the right online audience and simplifying the conversion process.

5-star review surge (Oct 2023 - Apr 2024): a local SEO case study demonstrating the impact of review generation and social media.

Uptick in 5-Star Reviews

By implementing a targeted review strategy, we increased the number of 5-star reviews:

  • Review Generation Tactics: We actively encouraged satisfied customers to leave 5-star reviews on relevant platforms. This included streamlined processes for requesting reviews and highlighting positive feedback on the website.
  • Social Media: We integrated social media to highlight these positive reviews. Consistent, engaging content updates boosted the company's visibility, fostering a sense of community, and encouraged more positive review generation.

The Enduring Power of SEO

SteelMart's story isn't magic or just a flash in the pan – it's the power of a smart local SEO strategy in action. Their 190% traffic surge is a testament to the impact of targeted keywords, technical tweaks, and engaging content when managed by a team who is fluent in search. 

By prioritizing local search and user experience, we transformed SteelMart's website into a lead-generating machine. This local business is another example that proves SEO isn't just about ranking – it's about building a strong online presence that drives lasting business results.

Ready to plant your flag on the digital map? Want to increase your online visibility? Fill out the contact form below and let's get started!

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