How Direction.com Helped Client Get 10x More Traffic


One SEO agency has done wonders for a concealed gun carry training company, helping them outshoot their competition by improving their online presence and achieving a staggering 10x increase in organic traffic. This is the story of their success. 

Agency

Direction.com is a U.S.-based veteran-owned SEO agency and marketing software company. Their mission is to help businesses generate targeted traffic and sales leads by enhancing their online presence. Direction.com’s in-house SEO team specializes in creating and executing custom-tailored SEO campaigns. They use various SEO techniques to help their clients rank higher in SERPs and attract more website visitors. These include on-page optimization, link building, and content marketing.

Direction.com is also committed to transparency and accountability. Their clients have access to a client portal where they can track real-time SEO reports, view their campaign roadmap, and have direct chats with the team. 

Client

Concealed Coalition is a concealed carry permit certification and gun law education provider. They offer various classes and resources, including concealed carry permit certification classes, gun law training, safety and self-defense classes, online courses and webinars, and a membership program that provides access to exclusive resources and discounts. 

Concealed Coalition is the first firearms training company to train state-approved curricula in all 50 states. They use innovative teaching methods to teach students of all experience levels how to carry a concealed weapon safely and responsibly.

In January 2021, Concealed Coalition partnered with Direction.com to enhance their online presence. 

Goals

Concealed Coalition’s long-term plan was to reduce their reliance on costly advertising by building a solid organic presence. Their immediate SEO objectives were to:

  • Achieve high organic traffic for critical keyword phrases, such as “Concealed Carry Permit.” 
  • Overtake Concealed Coalition’s primary competitor—US Concealed Carry—for search terms that drive qualified traffic and sales.
  • Increase the share of organic traffic contributing to sales to offset their dependence on monthly PPC spending, which had reached $20k/month.
  • Establish their brand as an industry authority by ensuring their state reciprocity guides rank on the first page of Google for every state they serve.

Process

Direction.com’s approach for Concealed Coalition’s SEO campaign revolved around content creation and link building, both internally and through backlinks. SE Ranking served as their primary SEO tool throughout the campaign. 

Connor Wilkins

CMO at Direction.com

We use SE Ranking to build winning SEO strategies for our clients. Their suite of tools allows for robust market research, competitive analysis, and website audits—all of which serve to inform our SEO campaign roadmaps.

Now, let’s take a closer look at their project step-by-step. 

1. Analyzing the market and competition to find opportunities.

At the project’s outset, Direction.com explored the competitive landscape, analyzing Concealed Coalition’s direct competitors. They used SE Ranking’s Competitive Research module to gain deep insights into their client’s competitors’ SEO strategies. This enabled them to reverse-engineer their tactics to develop even more effective strategies to outrank them in the SERPs for high-value keywords. 

Direction.com also compared various competitor keywords to their client’s to identify areas for enhancement and adjust their SEO strategy accordingly. Direction.com also compared various SEO metrics, including traffic and Domain Trust, to understand where their client’s website stood in relation to the competition. 

Competition overview

Conducting a SERP analysis provided Direction.com valuable insights into the organic competition. This encompassed direct competitors, their keyword rankings, keyword difficulty levels, and search volumes. This information helped Direction.com identify ideas for optimizing content and on-page elements to align with user expectations and search engine preferences. This approach worked to improve Concealed Coalition’s visibility in the SERPs.

Connor Wilkins

CMO at Direction.com

One of the standout features of SE Ranking is its ability to provide a comprehensive competitor keyword analysis. This helps us to not only plan a complete SEO roadmap but also to stay ahead of the curve and continually target the right keywords that will drive traffic and conversions.

Additionally, SE Ranking’s competitor monitoring feature helped Direction.com stay updated on competitors’ activities in both organic and paid search. By continuously monitoring and benchmarking various SEO metrics against competitors, Direction.com could make data-driven decisions to improve Concealed Coalition’s online visibility and performance.

2. Identifying the top-performing keywords

After a thorough analysis of their main competitors, Direction.com carefully picked keywords that would have the greatest impact on the project’s success. 

They started by analyzing variations of the same keywords that Concealed Coalition was bidding on for their PPC campaign. Several options were assessed based on keyword difficulty score, search volume, and competition. As a result, they decided to target all U.S. states using the following keyword variations:

  • Concealed Carry Permit [State]” 
  • Concealed Carry Reciprocity [State]” 
  • “[State] CCW” 
  • Gun Laws in [State]” 
  • “[State] Concealed Carry

By targeting these keywords, Direction.com intended to offset their client’s PPC overhead and replace it with organic traffic. Additionally, these terms had driven a ton of organic traffic to their competitor’s website, so they wanted to absorb and direct it to Concealed Coalition.

With the keyword list ready, they could move on to creating optimized content.

3. Creating well-optimized and organized content

To solidify Concealed Coalition’s position as an industry leader and outshine the competition, Direction.com created a well-thought-out content strategy. Their strategy consisted of two key components:

  • A comprehensive content hub: This hub served to educate users about state reciprocity, gun laws, and concealed carry rights in every U.S. state.
  • Supplemental high-value content: Consisting of blog posts, this component aimed at continuously engaging and educating their audience.

Central to the content strategy was a 50-page content cluster. It was designed to provide tons of helpful information for users while targeting specific long-tail and local-oriented keywords. These extensive pages, totaling over 3,000 words each, provided extensive guides on gun laws, reciprocity agreements between states, concealed carry acquisition processes, and more. 

Direction.com produced five state reciprocity pages and four regular blog posts each month. The content strategy Direction.com deployed was tailored specifically for their client’s target audience. SE Ranking’s Keyword Intent overview section of the Keyword Research tool shows how Direction.com balanced informational and commercial content to drive traffic to their client’s website and increase their sales revenue. 

Keywords by intent

4. Link Building

After publishing link-worthy content, Direction.com set up internal links. Notably, they created and interlinked interactive reciprocity maps on each page. This made it possible for users to navigate easily between any state reciprocity page. This improved the user experience and interwove all state reciprocity pages in a seamless way. This formed a cluster of valuable content favored by search engines. 

When Direction.com first began their campaign in January 2021, Concealed Coalition had a total of 450 backlinks. The agency used SE Ranking’s Backlink Checker to assess competitors’ backlink profiles, identify high-quality backlinks, and explore opportunities for acquiring valuable links. 

When sourcing backlinks, Direction.com focused mostly on sites with high domain authority, quality monthly organic traffic, and relevancy. To reinforce the local prominence for Concealed Coalition’s state reciprocity pages, they pursued backlinks from relevant, authoritative regional publishers. By the end of the project, the website had a total of 11,823 backlinks.

Connor Wilkins

CMO at Direction.com

SE Ranking’s backlink analysis feature has been instrumental in our link-building efforts. It helps us improve website authority and organic rankings, as well as strengthen the overall SEO strategy. 

Results 

With the SEO strategy in full swing, Concealed Coalition’s website started to get tangible results within a few months: 

  • Since the project’s beginning, the website witnessed a tenfold organic traffic growth, soaring to 54,000 unique monthly users:
Total traffic growth
  • The estimated traffic value also multiplied by ten, reaching up to $58,200:
Traffic cost growth
  • Direction.com observed a significant increase in their client’s newly earned keywords every month, with many of them securing the first page of Google at the time of indexing: 
Keywords number growth
  • The number of new backlinks experienced an astonishing 26-fold increase and continues to rise:
Backlinks number growth

These results helped Concealed Coalition to increase their organic SEO presence and offset their reliance on paid advertising. 

Takeaways

By leveraging SE Ranking’s tools, Direction.com deepened their understanding of their client’s competitive landscape and identified areas for improvement. They successfully adjusted their content strategy to help Concealed Coalition achieve improved rankings and better online visibility.

Here is a list of the SE Ranking features that enabled Direction.com to complete this project successfully:

  • Competitive Research: This tool provided Direction.com with valuable insights into the SEO strategies of their client’s competitors. This enabled them to reverse-engineer tactics and craft a tangible strategy.
  • Keyword Research: Carefully analyzing and targeting the right keywords enabled Direction.com to reach their client’s target audience and significantly improve their search visibility.
  • Backlink Checker: This tool helped Direction.com analyze the backlink profiles of their client’s competitors and get ideas to improve website authority. 

Here are some helpful tips derived from this case that could be useful to other SEO agencies:

  • Keep a watchful eye on competitors: By monitoring the activities of your direct rivals, you can identify ways to improve your keyword strategy, content, and backlink profile. This will help you stay ahead of the competition.
  • Carefully research keywords: Consider different types of keywords, such as short-tail, long-tail, and local keywords, to identify new opportunities and expand your reach. Balance different search intents to appeal to users at different stages of the buyer journey. 
  • Put your audience first when creating content: Don’t just cater to search algorithms. In fact, you should focus primarily on building trust and credibility with your audience. 
  • Keep a balance between informational and promotional content: Make sure your promotional content remains relevant to your audience and provides genuine value.

Once again, this case underscores that the success of an SEO project hinges on accurate data, comprehensive competitor research, and the strategic targeting of high-performing keywords. For more insights and the latest SEO techniques, don’t forget to check out our blog and webinars.



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