With both an ecommerce store and Liverpool-based showroom, it was important to drive sales through both channels. With so many high profile competitors, Direct4Baby felt that they were falling behind in terms of brand awareness and sales volume.
What Direct4Baby has over their competitors however is affordability and a stronger ecommerce presence. The onset of the Covid-19 pandemic and resulting lockdowns/restrictions meant that more and more consumers were turning to online stores to get all of their baby essentials – many of Direct 4 Baby’s biggest competitors relied heavily on physical retail stores and a presence on local high streets.
Venture Stream created an organic search plan, conducting research on search trends, keyword gap/opportunity analysis and deep dive competitor and keyword research across current website visibility.
On-page SEO analysis allowed the team to make recommendations for copy, page titles and meta data. They also conducted audits across products, collections and blog content to ensure all copy was of high-quality and optimised for target keywords.
Through relevant blog content, the brand was able to engage with both new and existing customers and provide guidance on the topics most valuable to the target audience.
The SEO strategy was implemented in four stages.
Acting upon the findings of on-page SEO and keyword opportunity analysis, Venture Stream began to create new on-page copy and meta data for core category pages. This meant the content marketing team were able to publish detailed, high-quality content that incorporated the most valuable keywords, putting Direct 4 Baby in a position to rank for more generic, product-focused keywords as well as specific products from particular brands that were popular among the target audience.
Every brand stocked brings with it a whole host of keyword opportunities. In order to outperform more established competitors, it’s important that Direct4Baby ranks highly in organic search results for the most sought-after brands. Earlier this year we undertook a new project, focusing on the Joie products that Direct4Baby sells in order to generate more sales and revenue. Dedicated landing and collection pages were created, alongside supporting blogs that answer all of the most searched questions around Joie products. As of December 2021, sales of Joie products have increased by 1381% year-on-year.
New landing pages targeting local keywords such as ‘pram shops liverpool’ and ‘baby shops liverpool’ were then created. This meant traffic could be driven to the website and footfall to the showroom at the same time. Many parents like to see the product in person before making a big purchase, so ranking for local keywords was particularly important as many baby items are costly. The page even features a virtual tour of the Direct 4 Baby showroom via Google Maps integration.
Venture Stream focused Direct4Baby’s blog strategy on long tail keywords to deliver ‘value added’ content most relevant to new and expecting parents. Answering questions with search volume behind them, as well as parenting guides and product comparisons allowed them to reach new customers and keep existing ones coming back to the site – all whilst positioning Direct 4 Baby as an authority on baby products and parenting tips.
Organic search activity was first implemented in May 2019. By May 2020:
Best Low Budget Campaign (SEO) (Small)
Having already worked with Direct4Baby for over two years and supported the development and maintenance of their previous Magento 1 website, we decided it was time to re-platform in order to improve site performance and responsiveness across all devices, as well as to develop functionality and refine the customer journey across the site.
Direct4Baby has experienced rapid, substantial growth since we began working with them on their marketing strategies, and it was clear they needed a new website in order to be able to keep up with demand more efficiently.
We decided that the Shopify Advanced plan would provide the best platform for Direct4Baby as it’s designed for larger brands with sizable product catalogues and allows for pain-free growth as the company continues to scale up and expand.
Shopify also makes the admin side of the business much easier and gives the D4B team the freedom and flexibility to customise their online store without the need for complex coding knowledge.
It was important to implement a category structure that both made sense to the customer but also suited the SEO needs of the business. The category structure used was therefore multi-level, allowing products to be categorised appropriately. Products must be merchandisable across multiple categories to ensure they appear where relevant in order to guarantee maximum exposure, thus increasing conversion.
We designed product pages that provided multiple product photos and detailed product information – both very important for Direct4Baby as many of their products have high price points, such as prams and car seats. The page content is flexible to support a range of configurable and customisable products. They also needed to support various integrations such as reviews.io, Klarna and share buttons.
The Shopify build allowed us to increase functionality with simple integrations which could easily be managed by the Direct4Baby team via the Shopify dashboard. These included gift vouchers, live chat, out of stock notifications, MailChimp integration and blog page builder functionality.
*July 2020 vs July 2021 (site launched in September 2020)