A Success Story in SEO — Our Own


Our affiliate site Jazz Collector is invaluable as a laboratory in which we experiment and use our experience and knowledge for clients. For example, our experience at Jazz Collector has helped us to create and manage blogs for our clients, as we are now doing with the Think Harder blog for the Portland Cement Association.

So here’s a great lesson we learned in Search Engine Optimization at Jazz Collector. About eight months ago we decided we wanted to focus on one term to improve our rankings in Google. Our traffic was growing solidly, but hardly any of it was coming from Google searches. We spent some time reviewing various terms using the Google External Keyword Tool – the older one, not the new one.

We targeted a few key phrases that would go beyond jazz and bring us deeper into the world of jazz collectors. The ones that were most appealing were “Jazz Records” and “Jazz Vinyl” and we decided we would go after Jazz Vinyl because, in monthly searches worldwide, it outscored Jazz Records by about 15,000 searches. The total for Jazz Vinyl was about 75,000 searches, compared to about 60,000 for Jazz Records. In addition, we felt we had a better chance of moving up on Jazz Vinyl.

When we started, Jazz Collector came up somewhere in the middle of page four on searches for Jazz Vinyl. Our goal was to get onto the first page. So, basically, we started using the term Jazz Vinyl all through the site. Everytime we did a link we tried to incorporate Jazz Vinyl; every time we posted a picture, we used the phrase Jazz Vinyl; we used the term in headlines, in text, in comments, everywhere. And we did it often and consistently. Meanwhile, our overall traffic was continuing to grow.

After about three months we had moved up to the third page on Google, and after about six months we had moved to the middle of the second page. And there we sat, not moving at all. Just a couple of weeks ago we did a Google search and there we were, solidly entrenched in our usual position on the second page of listings under the term Jazz Vinyl. It seemed as if we wouldn’t move, but we did consider our experiment a success since we had at least moved up from page four, where we started.

Well, yesterday we did another search of Jazz Vinyl on Google. Guess what?

Jazz Collector is number one. Yes, number one: Not just on the first page, but the number one Web site when you do a search under the term Jazz Vinyl on Google.

We didn’t hire anyone to do SEO for us, we just focused on the term we wanted and, boom, there we are number one. It’s nice to see that the system actually works the way it’s supposed to.

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