About the client
Castlery is an online furniture retailer with a presence in Australia, the United States, and Singapore.
Creating affordable designs for the modern home, they believe furniture should last, look good and be honestly-priced. By cutting out the middleman, they aim to keep costs down so that they can be passed on to the consumer. Featured in magazines such as Vogue Living, GQ, Better Homes and Gardens, and Junkee; Castlery had between 8-14% of its traffic coming from SEO, which made their pending rebrand risky.
Until late 2020, Castlery had individual websites for each region but wanted to migrate all three domains into one – castlery.com – as part of a larger rebranding and consolidation strategy. In Marketing We Trust was engaged in early October to help with the migration project with a looming deadline of 3 November.
Migrating three sites into one newly rebranded instance, while minimising impacts to search
Migration without unnecessary risk
Migration is always risky, and Castlery needed an experienced agency that has successfully migrated websites before so that the risk could be mitigated. At In Marketing We Trust, we’ve successfully migrated many sites, often with very tight deadlines.
Addressing drops in keyword rankings and traffic for the Australian region
It’s normal to see a drop in key metrics such as keyword rankings and traffic, and this was certainly the case for the Australian content. The crucial factor here was being aware of the potential for this to occur and close monitoring so that we could work quickly with Castlery to resolve the issue.
Creating a better user experience
When migrating multiple sites into one, there are areas that need to be addressed to make the users experience as seamless as possible. As Castlery was migrating sites from Australia, Singapore and the US, we determined that the user needs in each region would be different and therefore needed to ensure that tools such as hreflangs and geotagging were implemented so that visitors from each region would see products and pricing that were appropriate for them.
Flexibility and expertise limited negative SEO impacts and improved keyword footprints for Castlery
Ensuring industry standards were met for search engine optimisation
We were engaged to ensure standards were met throughout the migration process.
Despite having a very short timeframe in which to prepare, the In Marketing We Trust team were able to identify potential risks and communicate them to the Castlery team before the migration commenced. We also provided much-needed support during the migration and ran health checks in the days and weeks afterwards to ensure that any issues (such as the drop in traffic for Australia) were addressed as quickly as possible to reduce impacts on the business.
For Australia, our ability to work quickly and flexibly with Castlery to implement fixes meant that the traffic recovery occurred during December and January, which was faster than expected.
Extending the keyword footprint
Knowing how Google works, we were able to audit the keywords being used by Castlery, along with their tone of voice and existing content, to provide recommendations that would retain (and ultimately extend) their keyword footprint.
Using tools to segment content per region for a better user experience (with bonus SEO impacts)
Our deep knowledge of Google and its algorithms meant that we were able to create and implement a plan that involved using hreflangs, country selectors, and geo-redirection to segment content per region. This not only gave users the right content and dollar structure (great user experience) it allowed us to signal to Google which pages belonged in each region so that they could all be indexed correctly.
Here at In Marketing We Trust, the team are well versed in website migration and the complexity it brings, especially when it comes to SEO. The Castlery marketing team relied on us to provide expert advice that could be shared with the broader business, and we were able to set expectations and then deliver upon them, so they felt supported throughout the entire process.
Within the limited time frame available to us, we were able to take a holistic approach and look at:
- Migration discovery SEO
- Content analysis and insights
- Market research and benchmarking
- Keyword research and strategy
- Migration support
- Post-migration health checks and troubleshooting
Dependable, curious, and with the shared goal of ‘getting it done!’, our team will work hard to help you achieve your goals.
Migration success: minimising risk and working towards a better SEO future
Building understanding around SEO impacts
Not only were we able to provide expert advice during a fast-paced period of change and provide a solid framework, we have since signed an ongoing retainer with Castlery to provide continuous improvements to their SEO.
In completing these projects for Castlery, we’ve not only provided expertise when it was needed, we’ve been able to transfer these learnings back into the business to help them refine their strategy into the future.
consolidated 3 domains
organic revenue since migration (US)
Determining what was critical versus what was nice to have
One of the most important factors to consider when migrating sites within a tight timeframe is which tasks will have the biggest impact. And it’s common to see stakeholders with varying needs and wants, and Castlery was no different. We were able to assess the needs of each part of the business and advise on aspects that could be changed quickly to fit the project timeline, while also getting the most bang for buck.
Knowing that minimising lost traffic was vital, we were able to prioritise tasks pre and post-migration that have set a solid foundation for Castlery to build from, ensuring their growth and future success is within reach.
Setting expectations and then delivering on them
It’s not uncommon to see a drop in organic traffic post-migration, which is why our approach always involves careful consideration of the potential impacts for each migration.
The team at Castlery knew changes would likely cause a negative impact for some time on their site, and that it would have a knock-on effect on sales, but not having the experience of a previous migration behind them, they didn’t know what was reasonable to expect or how to mitigate risk.
We were able to provide advice based on their individual circumstances and this involved supporting them through an expected drop in traffic to the Australian site and were able to recover their traffic back to pre-migration numbers in just a few months.
Without a plan in place, businesses can expect to take many months to recover (if they recover fully at all), so Castlery’s proactive approach to hiring a specialist team to assist them in their migration goals has potentially saved them hundreds of thousands of dollars in lost organic revenue from the AU region alone.
US and Singapore traffic was not severely impacted, in fact, both regions performed better than predicted and the resulting organic revenue has been steady for Singapore and has more than doubled for the US since November.
Extending the team
Knowing how busy the Castlery team were, we were able to step in and act as an extension of their team – engaging directly with the developers to relieve pressure from the client marketing team so they didn’t need to try and juggle day-to-day work alongside a big project such as a site migration.