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CASE STUDY


FindMeFaster.com



At Find Me Faster, we develop and implement effective search engine marketing strategies that integrate tightly with your current sales and advertising programs. Our services include:
  • Website Optimizations that make your site more search engine friendly
  • Analysis of Current Website Performance and Usability
  • Competitive Analysis and Search Engine Ranking Reports
  • Paid Search (PPC) Advertising Campaigns
  • Site Submission to Search Engines and Directories
  • Workshops and Training Seminars on Search Engine Marketing


FindMeFaster

OVERVIEW



President: Matt Van Wagner

Matt Van Wagner is a seasoned sales and marketing professional specializing in paid and local search engine marketing strategies in the United States and Canada. An award-winning speaker whose presentations are usually as entertaining as they are informative, Matt has been a popular speaker at SES, SMX and other search conferences. Matt is President and founder of Find Me Faster a search engine marketing firm based in Nashua, NH. He is a member of SEMNE (Search Engine Marketing New England), and SEMPO, the Search Engine Marketing Professionals Organization as a member and contributing courseware developer for the SEMPO Institute. Matt writes occasionally on internet, search engines and technology topics for IMedia, The NH Business Review and other publications and served as technical editor for Andrew Goodman's "Winning Results with Google AdWords" and Mona Elesseily's "Yahoo! Search Marketing Handbook." Matt is a graduate of St Lawrence University, Canton NY (BS Economics) with an M.B.A. from Rivier College, Nashua, NH.

Website: http://www.findmefaster.com

Goals



Recently, the owners of LOBSTER.COM decided it was time for a new site, new logo, and an updated image that reflected the company’s values, and expanded product offerings. We wanted to understand what is happening on the site now and how that information can be used to influence the new design

Solution



Before launch, the folks at LOBSTER.COM wanted to know what was really happening on the website. They had used some basic tracking programs, AWSTATS and URCHIN, but those tools did not seem to give a very intimate feel for what was really happening on the current site.

The old LOBSTER.COM website is relatively small, with fewer than 12 pages, including a very basic shopping cart. The navigation, though slightly non-standard, is very utilitarian and easy to follow.

The questions we had regarding the LOBSTER.COM website were pretty much the basic ones that any website owner would want to know, including:
  • Where are visitors coming from?
  • How are they finding the website now?
  • What keywords are bringing motivated visitors?
  • What are people doing on the site?
  • How long are they staying? What time do they usually come?

The great part about analyzing website data is that it always leads you to ask more and more questions about the data, the visitors and the site’s performance. A real strength of HITSLINK is how quickly it presents very good top-level data.

Many of the most important and frequently asked questions about website performance can be answered in minutes on HITSLINK without going through tons of menus and screen loads as is required on other analytics tools.

Results



One of the first really big surprises we obtained from HITSLINK Visitor Analysis Map overlay was the amazing extent to which the traffic to LOBSTER.COM was coming in from international sources!

The reason this is so surprising is that LOBSTER.COM only ships live lobsters in the continental United States! In the ten year history of the company, exceedingly few orders for live lobster have ever come from outside the US. Given the strength of the international traffic, the management team at LOBSTER.COM started to consider what additional opportunities were available from European traffic.

As they dug down into the data, it became clear that the traffic from overseas did not seem all that interesting. Visitors were not staying on the site very long and bounce rates were very high. Certainly, the fact that LOBSTER.COM is an English-only site and only ships to US customers could be a primary reason why foreign visitors do not stick around. If the site was re-designed with European visitors in mind, would these visitors stick around and perhaps become customers – buying lobster for their American friends and families? More exploration in the data was required before making that kind of investment.

A second hypothesis arose – that the international traffic is mainly due to the one-word domain name. Single word domains, especially names that are as evocative as lobster, can bring naturally attract visitors who will never be interested in buying lobster. Taking a quick look at our Visitor Referrals Pie-Chart and the underlying data, that hypothesis became more likely the reason for the short unproductive visits from our international visitors. So LOBSTER.COM put the idea of dealing with international business opportunities on the back-burner for now, and decided to focus on the primary market for US visitors.

What Keywords Are Bringing the Most Motivated Visitors

The fact that LOBSTER.COM has a natural advantage for attracting searchers on the search query, “lobster”, was pretty much confirmed by the HITSLINK data.

However, for the web design team, a more interesting question, the more interesting question was – what keywords are bringing in the most motivated visitors? What keywords should they focus on for search engine optimization purposes?

The HITSLINK data has been tremendously helpful in helping discover this important data. With very little effort on our part, we were able to determine exactly which words would be our most valuable.

HITSLINK Reports let us look at the data across a number of behavioral metrics:
  • What keywords are attracting visitors who visit multiple pages?
  • What keywords are attracting visitors who stay the longest on the site?
  • What keywords are bringing repeat visitors?
  • What keywords are driving revenues?
  • What keywords are bringing all of the above?

Without having to run any special analysis, HITSLINK practically hands you a prioritized list of the most valuable keywords driving traffic to the site. This saved us hours of data manipulation. From this one data report, LOBSTER.COM was able to sort keywords by the most visitors, by the keywords that drove the longest site visits, the most pages, and the fewest bounce-outs, and which resulted in repeat visitors. This information is critical in optimizing marketing objectives and campaigns.

In this part of the case history, we’ve shown some of the HITSLINK Reports that have helped shape both the business and website design decisions made during the preparation phase for the re-launch of LOBSTER.COM as it gets ready to launch the new site with expanded offerings and a new shell. LOBSTER.COM is also utilizing the powerful features of HitsLink to optimize its new site.