Integrated Approach Success Story: Transportation Industry

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August 09 2017

Great Western Leasing & Sales is a new and used commercial semi-trailer dealer for the transportation & logistics industry and a client of TopSpot’s who has utilized both Search Engine Optimization and Pay Per Click services since 2013.

As an SEO client, Great Western Leasing was assigned to one of TopSpot’s Customer Relationship Teams (or CRTs for short). These teams consist of a Team Lead, 2 SEO Specialists, a Conversion Improvement Specialist and a PPC Account Manager.

Great Western Leasing’s CRT was recently awarded a Crystal Award for the data driven strategies they used to guide the website design, development and ongoing marketing. We’ve outlined the details of their integrated marketing approach below.

Data Driven Website Design & Development: Our Website Approach

Using the Google Analytics data collected from 2013 – 2016, TopSpot was tasked with building a responsive website that would drive more form completions and an increased number of total phone calls for the transportation provider.

Sitemap with SEO as the Foundation – When Great Western Leasing began working with TopSpot, their website’s pages were structured in a way that guided users by trailer type first. Once a user found the type of trailer they were looking for, they were provided information on new and used models, all within the same page. (shown below)

Previous Website’s Trailer Pages 

Previous Website’s Trailer Pages

When reviewing PPC search queries in Google Analytics during the sitemap creation process, it was shown that users were using the modifiers “new” and “used” in their searches. Based on this data, the new website’s sitemap included a “New Trailers” section in addition to a separate “Used Trailers” section, both of which were featured in the new website’s main navigation.

Sample Search Query Data

New Trailer Search Queries     Used Trailer Search Queries

B-SMART SearchesWebsite Functionality – The team also identified that users were searching for trailers by year, manufacturer and trailer width/length when looking for trailers online. (shown on the right)

To assist users in finding the specific inventory that matched their initial searches, Filter & Sort functions were incorporated into the design of the website’s trailer inventory pages.

These modifiers were also incorporated into the on-page optimization of the product detail pages before launch to increase traffic upon the site’s launch.

Website Navigation Across All Devices – Upon reviewing the data coming through the website’s internal site search feature, it was found that sessions where the internal site search was utilized had higher form conversion rates (2.40%) versus sessions where the user did not use the site search (.98%).

Site Search Usage Metrics from 2013-2016

Site Search Metrics

It was also noted that on mobile phones, only 0.14% sessions utilized the site search feature, pointing to an area of opportunity for increasing mobile form completions on the new responsive website.

Based on this data, the internal site search was prominent on the desktop, tablet, and mobile devices to help drive leads.

Mobile Design Strategy – Based on Google Analytics data, forms were being abandoned 94% of the time when accessed on mobile phones and needed to be made easier to use. This was done by incorporating multiple conversion points on each page, including a shortened form on each landing page. Form fields were also made large enough for easy usage on mobile devices.

Generating more phone calls was an important goal as well. The current site listed all 3 of Great Western Leasing’s current locations in the top right hand corner in small font, and down the right hand side of each page, taking up valuable real estate. To make this mobile friendly while highlighting all 5 locations that were included on the new site, each location was displayed in a larger font across the width of the header. On a mobile phone, the message “Give Us A Call Today” was at the top of each page with an easy to click drop down where each phone number could be selected.

Post Launch Strategies: Our Integrated Approach

The website launched in May of 2016 and the strategies below were implemented in the following months based on post-launch data identified by the team:

Location Based Marketing – The launch of the new website was in line with the launch of some new locations for Great Western Leasing and while the overall traffic to the new site was trending upward, traffic from the newer locations was stagnant.

To drive additional traffic to their (two new and three more established locations, Inventory by Location pages were created. Unique content was written for each page and inventory was pulled in via Great Western Leasing’s online database, showcasing what trailers were available per storefront.

The location pages were added to the website at the end of June and indexed shortly after.

The PPC program was also structured to drive traffic by each location, allowing the team to make quick budget adjustments when needed based on supply and demand.

Continued Use of the B-SMART Method® – The program’s keyword strategy continued to utilize the B-SMART Method® by including keywords containing the trailer year, manufacturer, type or width/length. When a specific search was done, an ad matching the search query was done.

The B-SMART Method® Being Utilized In PPC Ads

B-SMART for PPC

Advanced SEO Techniques – Before the new site, Great Western Leasing was not able to take advantage of adding product schema markup due to backend limitations and did not disclose price on the site. After discussing the pros and cons of doing so with the new website, the client agreed to test it out for all trailer inventory landing pages. Product Schema Markup was implemented in July of 2016 and it began showing in the Search Engine Results shortly after. (shown below)

Product Schema Markup for Great Western Leasing

Product Schema Markup for Great Western Leasing

Digital Marketing Results

The website launched on May 10th, 2016.  When comparing post launch results (5/10/2016 – 5/9/2017) to the previous time period (5/11/2015-5/9/2016) the team saw some significant wins for the transportation & logistics provider:

Overall phone calls from the website increased by 40.28% with increases coming from all 3 tracked mediums with Organic phone calls increasing by 45.57%, Paid Search phone calls increasing by 35.35% and phone calls from tracked online directories increasing by 52.63%.

Phone Calls by Source

The new website saw some great improvements in regards to their forms across all devices:

  • Overall Form Completions (tracked as Goals in Google Analytics) increased by 18.49%
  • Form completions from sessions occurring on mobile phones increased by 140.70%
  • Total Form Abandonment Rate from mobile devices improved by 50.61% by going from a 94% abandonment rate to 46% post launch.

Also, thanks to a more prominent display of the internal site search tool on all device sizes, usage of the internal search tool increased by nearly 800%! Even with the increased usage, the conversion rate for those who utilize the site search still remains higher than those who do not.

The new sitemap, content and user experience helped to grow the site’s organic presence throughout the first year post launch as well.

Organic traffic increased by 70.59% (33,746 versus 57,566)

Organic Traffic Comparison

 Year Over Year Organic Traffic Comparison

Traffic to the new and used landing pages that were built out based on Google Analytics data consisting of 68.25% of total organic traffic. 

Traffic Growth from Digital Strategies

The same website improvements that assisted in the growth of organic exposure also played a hand in improving Great Western Leasing’s PPC results. In fact, when looking at the first year post launch, the AdWords program saw a 5% decrease in overall Cost Per Click, allowing the program’s ads to show up more frequently than before.

Overall leads (meaning both forms and phone calls) driven by Paid Search increased by 25.68%.

Traffic by location for each targeted area began to increase upon the launch of the Inventory by Location section. When looking at July 2016- June 2017 versus the previous period, traffic improvements per page were:

  • Oregon (new location) – 131.72% increase in traffic (4,127 versus 1,781)
  • New Mexico (new location) – 33.99% increase in traffic (662 versus 887)
  • California – 16.95% increase in traffic (28,537 versus 24,401)
  • Texas – 20.14% increase in traffic (29,997 versus 24,968)
  • Utah – 20.13% increase in traffic (5,252 versus 4,372)

The product schema that was implemented on the individual inventory pages to allow pricing and inventory data in the search results has led to a steady increase in traffic to those pages.

Organic Traffic to Trailer Inventory Pages

Organic Traffic Increase for Transportation Industry

In conclusion, the CRT’s efforts have dramatically affected the number of quality leads generated for Great Western Leasing, helping them to grow their business online and become a leading provider of new and used commercial semi-trailers for the transportation & logistics industry.

Interested in learning more about how our team can create a digital strategy fit to your business goals? Get in touch!