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A case study in Search Engine Optimization.

Riley's Trick Shop - All Fun Stuff



Riley's Trick Shop

Riley's Trick Shop is a 67 year old business that sells practical jokes, pranks, costumes, wigs, hats, and everything you'd expect a "trickshop" to carry.  Your typical brick & mortar retailer.

When I met Jim Riley he had a homemade website consisting of maybe 20 pages that were pushing his company and some of his products.  He knew he could do a lot more on the web, but needed some professional help.  So we met, and Jim was convinced he had found the professionals he was seeking.

We agreed to start from scratch and build the kind of e-commerce store and image that Riley's was known for.  We also agreed that we wanted to "own his category online".  Every business on the Internet should consider this a priority.  Our products or services place us in a specific category (or more than one in many cases).  It is imperative that you attack with the right ammunition and in the right categories.  In this case, we wanted to own 'trick shop' as a keyword category and rank well under many other keyword phrases in many categories based on his diverse product lines. 

Jim was receiving 12-20 orders per month for various products he had web pages about.  We met in May of 2002, and RTS was getting about 76 visitors per day (24 hours).  The average visitor stay was about :58 seconds.

We went live with their new site on July 3rd, 2002.  We built it around selling products, being trusted, communication, security and fun (not to mention a small budget to get started).  We wanted customers to find what they were looking for, with a "see it before you buy it" mentality.  We developed major keyword categories that we wanted to capture market share in, and hand submitted to the top dozen search engines and directories (we also focused on external links we could take advantage of to also help us in our overall ranking) - everything, right down to linking the Visa credit card logo. 

This success story continues to unfold, but I would like to share a few key statistics that are catapulting Jim's business on a daily basis.  Oh, we still have made mistakes, but that part of our education is the best part... we learned from them and don't make them again.  We try anything, and test everything - another lesson for your notepad.

RTS now receives more than 700 visitors (not hits) per day, their sales are now 12-20 Internet orders everyday and still increasing!  Average stay of visitors is 7:50 (that's almost eight minutes). They are doing large business around the World - try 1,000 wigs to Curacao, or 500 Blues Brothers Hats for a corporate get together.  We are still improving on his conversion ratio (how many buy) - but as you can see, we have the visitors to convert now.  Also, only about half of these orders are actually placed online, the rest call in their order (but they originated from the website*).

Key to the success you're reading about is good (keyword) search engine optimization tactics, linking partnerships, quality traffic, nurtured submissions, and take action sales copy, plus, marketing to your market.  Your business can have these same results! - your sales can zoom too!  But there is a process, we do not just throw sites at the web and see what sticks.  Please remember, these results do not happen overnight.  Here's what's really HOT! 

Under the keyword "trick shop" - Riley's is Number One (# 1) in Yahoo!™, AOL™, MSN™, and now Google™, not to mention hundreds of smaller directories.  This directly results in thousands of qualified targeted consumers shopping for what Jim is selling, every month.  This is what every sales orientated website should strive for.  Understand, most people DO NOT buy the first time they visit a website, sometimes multiple visits are required before the visitor hits a comfort level to actually buy.  But knowing this helps us focus on trust issues like stressing the now 67 years in business, a faxable order form option, a real person at the end of that phone number, there are so many considerations.  Can your business benefit from these type of results?  Silly question huh?

That search traffic, plus word of mouth, plus book-marking, plus reciprocal links, plus great products with fair prices, combined with good business and customer service -  is all helping Riley's to "own his category online"!  This equals a profitable web model, and allows for budgeting, growth, improvement, etc. 

Because this business is already receiving a positive return on their web investment, it's much easier to justify newer, stronger, or improved marketing programs to further promote larger sales, or more frequent, or tell-a-friend type viral activity, or more back-end development dealing with navigation or ease-of-use.  It's downright exciting!  What?  You're not excited about your website (anymore)?

One more fact... the results we shared above were accomplished in approximately 150 days. Still not convinced?  Try looking up "political masks" or "fake newspaper headlines" - go ahead, check - we'll wait.  Riley's Trick Shop shows up on the first page results under almost all the search engines for so many terms that there are too many to list.  In this way, even if we lose great placement on one or two terms, we still  have qualified targeted visitors from 50 other terms.  This is winning online.  This is a small business owner who is growing his business because of the Internet, and he's doing so on a Worldwide basis.  Still not convinced?  Take a look at this:

Update: January 2005

Riley's Trick Shop online sales in 2004
increased 72% over their Internet sales in 2003!

Are you ready to get started now?


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