How many times have you washed your hands today, or better yet how many times have your coworkers? Right now there might be your favorite scented holiday soap in the bathroom. For some there might be an empty soap bottle with a little water to get the remnants out. No matter how you go about picking your soap, could you successfully differentiate your product in a national e-commerce playing field? Today we look into how SEO efforts were able to get national rankings for organic soap through 3 simple steps: lather, rinse, repeat.
Vermont Soap’s SEO campaign launched in February of 2018 with a robust WordPress site for the bulk of their content and Shopify for all end products.
From the homepage of the business:
“Vermont Soap has been replacing yucky petrochemical based products with yummy natural formulations made from organic oils and herbs.”
Our team was tasked with capturing national rankings for this e-commerce site with a product that, in retrospect, was made to disrupt consumer behavior in the soap industry—that being how you pick your soap.
Initial research in Google Analytics identified which products were already driving traffic and sales. We broke all products of the site into the categories below:
- Organic Soap
- Organic Castile Soap
- Organic Foaming Hand Soap
- Organic Deodorant
- Handmade Soap
- Organic Moisturizer
- Natural Cleaning Spray
- Natural Organic Shower Gel
- Soap for Dry and Sensitive Skin
- Shea Butter
Next, our team lathered keyword research into title tags, META descriptions, and on-page content. We optimized product categories in addition to core pages of the wholesale website, ranging from organic soap for oily skin to handmade bar soap made from coconut. How do you lather your keywords into your title tags and descriptions?
Title Tag: Handmade, All Natural Bar Soap Made with Coconut, Olive & Palm Oil
Description: Looking for an all-natural soap that will keep your skin healthy? Try our handmade bar soap, made from organic ingredients.
Title Tag: Organic Soap for Oily Skin | Liquid Castile, Clay & Astringent Soap
Description: Keep your skin clear and healthy with organic soap for oily skin from Vermont Soap, producer of fine organic products since 1992.
The meta information above (visible only in the page source-code and to Google index) communicates a clear message to search engines—soap manufactured with a high regard for quality, health, and resources.
The first 30 days of SEO are crucial to results and overall success for the campaign. After lathering a multifaceted SEO strategy throughout the website, our next step was rinsing organic traffic growth. In SEO, we measure organic traffic growth from Google and Bing to gauge campaign success.
Below you will see organic traffic over the course of a 5 month period in 2018 (orange line) compared to 2019 (blue line).
March 1st-August 31st Organic Search Traffic for Vermont Soap
In 2018, organic search traffic increased month to month from June to August.
Note: traffic in May 2018 was skewed because the Google Analytics tracking code had to be reinstalled.
March 2018: 10,172
April 2018: 4,911
May 2018: 1,204
June 2018: 8,974
July 2018: 9,365
August 2018: 11,267
September 2018: 11,600
In 2019, we saw organic traffic up 36.63% year over year: from 44,273 to 60,491 organic users. The month to month breakdown was as follows:
March 2019: 11,409 (up)
April 2019: 10,050 (up)
May 2019: 9,571
June 2019: 9,500 (up)
July 2019: 10,530 (up)
August 2019: 11,300 (up)
Impressions are when a user sees a website in search results. They strongly indicate SEO growth because as rankings move upward, more people see the website.
We pulled impressions to the Vermont Soap website from June 1st to August 31st in both 2018 and 2019:
Impressions were up in 2018 with the site spiking at 10,698 impressions in one day on August 28th. Our total impressions to the site within those months was 662K.
By 2019, we had achieved more saturation across the market, so growth is less apparent in the figure above. Regardless, the website totaled 854K total impressions during the same 2019 time frame—a 192% increase from 2018.
After rinsing organic traffic for the Vermont Soap website and noting our successes, we worked to repeat SEO growth for the website. During the early phases of SEO, as Google acclimates to our optimization, we see major incremental gains. Then, growth steadies out and moves at an incremental pace, as seen in our 2019 figures.
Keywords in title tags, META descriptions, and on-page content led to successful national rankings for the Vermont Soap website:
#1 for Acidic Soaps
#1 for Alkaline Body Wash
#1 for Alkaline Soap
#1 for Organic Bar Soaps
#1 for Castille Soap
#1 for Conventional Deodorant
#1 for Natural Bar Soap
#1 for Natural pH Soap
#1 for Organic Castille Soap
#1 for Organic Liquid Soap
#1 for pH Balanced Soap
#1 for Private Label Soap
#1 for Wholesale Soap
Lather, Rinse, Repeat
So, how did e-commerce pick your soap? Through the use of a multifaceted SEO strategy with different keyword considerations, our team yielded national rankings for organic soap and delivered significant growth with organic traffic. Our keyword lather on product categories and wholesale pages initiated visibility across search engines. Once our data was rinsed, we achieved organic traffic and impression growth. An SEO campaign wouldn’t be complete without repeating what works, ensuring saturation for crucial keyword categories.
Should your campaign become stagnant, it may be time for a touch-up on the site. Looking for a good place to start? Lather, Rinse, Repeat.