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Envisage Associates had many problems with a new website and they had soon lost 75% of their previous traffic. They called us to revive their SEO health.

The brief

Envisage Associates is an award-winning design and production agency based in Stoke-on-Trent, with locations globally.

Their incumbent agency had recently launched Enviage’s new high-performance custom site, which had been built in Laravel and offered amazing load speeds. However, the custom element became a problem when Envisage needed to update their site: only one user could log in at a time, page layouts and elements were locked in place, and most features required them to go back to the developer for changes, which came with significant costs. For instance, Envisage’s brand name was misspelt in the footer of their site, but the agency wanted £250 to correct it.

Envisage had quickly encountered a range of problems and the new website had also performed badly. One month after it went live, Envisage had lost 75% of their traffic compared to the previous year, with a 79% drop in organic traffic.

The challenge

Having worked with Digital Defined on other digital projects, Envisage approached us to help them turn things around.

Envisage knew that nearly all their SEO traffic came through brand search and they wanted to expand their online reach and presence. The other agency had offered to achieve this by creating an effective SEO and content strategy, with an SEO-optimised and device-friendly website. Unfortunately they hadn’t delivered, so we needed to fix this.

In addition, Envisage didn’t feel the site clearly defined their solutions or reflect the creativity of their brand. Envisage Associates is made up of several sub-brands that offer very different solutions and this was something they were keen to demonstrate with a new site.

When the agency pushed the new site live, they deleted years of blog articles, losing valuable backlinks. After reaching out to the incumbent agency, they confirmed to us that no backups of the blogs existed. We completed a deep dive ourselves but were unable to find anything. No attempt had been made to recover any of the lost links, which provided so much value for SEO.

The new site’s custom-build had created various limitations and additional costs to Envisage, which we needed to find solutions for:

  • Only one user could edit at a time
  • Envisage couldn’t edit everything on the site themselves
  • Videos didn’t work on mobiles and didn’t have a backup image, so showed error messages
  • The page layout designs were static
  • Envisage couldn’t add any new plugins themselves
  • Basic SEO and website maintenance could only be completed by a developer
  • The sitemap submitted to Google had errors that had not been addressed
  • The HTTP and www versions of the url weren’t redirecting
  • Expensive AWS hosting costs


How we solved it

First, we needed to decide which platform to build the site in. Envisage was very keen to return to a WordPress site. It would offer a lot of customisation and flexibility without the expense of requiring a skilled developer. Put short, WordPress has a plugin for everything, and has existed long enough that most issues are easily resolved with a quick search around.

We then began to explore WordPress themes that were compatible with common WordPress plugins, but also allowed us to show the creative aspect of the brand. We decided the best theme for the new site was The Gem by CodexThemes.

The previous agency had already completed and shared its keyword research and content strategy, so this was reviewed and updated, then uploaded into SEMrush. This would enable us to establish benchmarks for Envisage’s SEO keywords and better understand their competitor landscape on search.

Given Envisage’s broad range of services and huge range of clients, it was important for us to further develop the content strategy. Early on, a plan was formed that not only considered the current site, but also the future of the site too. We wanted to ensure the site we were building worked immediately by improving performance and would also offer Envisage room to grow easily.

As the brand had several sub-brands and solutions, we felt an important part of the rebuild was to clearly signpost users to the most relevant content quickly. We would add weight to those pages by writing clear and concise content that could be read easily to help users have a clearer understanding of the sub-brands and solutions. The added bonus was that this content would also benefit the site’s SEO.

As with most B2B businesses, the most valuable asset you have is your portfolio of work. Using these on the site allows users to understand the types of brands you typically work with and the industries you’re familiar with, demonstrating your expertise and range. Envisage’s photos showcase that they’re a creative design and production agency. They add additional value by helping prospective clients quickly understand their capabilities, scale and creativity.

With the loss of so many backlinks, it was important that we put together a plan to recover as much as possible and we began to look for broken and lost links. Envisage had spent 20 years acquiring these links, which provide highly specific traffic, but also SEO value too.

Since Envisage’s blogs had been deleted, we started working with them to find past articles. Luckily, after some digging, a few emails and files were found containing articles that we were able to restore to the site.

Hosting the site using Amazon Web Services was an issue for Envisage as it had high costs and they saw little value from this. The solution came from Cloudways Hosting, which offered us a dedicated server at a competitive rate and delivered much better customer service.

Ben & the team at Digital Defined recently re-built our website. Along with helping us to better define our brand and solutions, we've seen a 232% increase in Organic traffic to the site. The SEO competitor planning and research prior to building the site ensured we had the perfect content and SEO strategy and beautiful site that works well on all devices.

Alistair Wilkins

Managing Director

What we delivered

With a strengthened content strategy, we were able to create a site that offers users concise signposting. This ensured they could find the most relevant content for them.

We expect to see better engagement from users on the site as a result of improving the customer journey and rethinking the user experience. When designing the new page layouts, we ensured that the content flowed easily and was engaging enough to keep users scrolling through each page. Making sure that the users understood Envisage’s offering fully and that they were able to easily find the relevant content, whilst giving them ample opportunity to convert.

We went live with the new site in two stages. First, we did a ‘soft launch’. This enabled us to look for any issues, conduct post-live SEO checks and fixes, plus functional tests of forms, buttons, etc. This also gave Envisage a chance to review the site and check content, with time to make any more edits. The second ‘hard launch’ involved the client publicly announcing the launch to their followers and customers.

The week following the launch saw a huge 470% increase in traffic, with an increase of 713% new users to the site too! After the effects of the launch settled, we started to measure the site performance against the benchmarks we’d previously established. The first full month after going live we saw traffic from organic search increase by 219%, whilst total traffic to the site increased by 294% compared to the previous year,

Site metrics that we use to measure engagement with the site and its content were also positive.

Average time on site - 19 minutes

Bounce rate down to 23%

10x more conversions

Ultimately the purpose of any business tool is to provide value. Since going live up until the day this case study was written the conversion rate of the site has been 2.48% versus 0.7%, and has generated 10 times more conversions than the previous year.


What’s next?

A new website is a great start, but that’s what it is. A starting point. We’ve worked hard to ensure the site’s SEO health score in SEMrush is above 92%, which puts the site into the top 10% of sites for SEO health. We’ve set up the site structure and content strategy with growth in mind – now we need to deliver it.

We plan to further develop the site to improve the user experience and customer signposting. It will provide each user with the capability of creating a custom experience of Envisage Associates themselves. Additionally, Envisage will rank for a broader range of keywords in Google and offer more specific solutions to the right audience.

Whilst Envisage will continue to write blogs, we’ve given them some direction. Any articles will support the areas of the site we develop, adding more rich, relevant content. With this in mind, Envisage is also now aware of which portfolios to prioritise. This will offer more value to users who are in different stages of the conversion journey, and also help to support prospective clients where there is more than one person responsible for selecting a provider.

Following on from the website work, we’ve prepared a Google Ads strategy to support those highly valuable keywords that they’re not currently ranking for through organic search. The aim is to further help Envisage improve their online visibility within the market. Google Ads is the most effective and efficient way to reach users with the right intent until we’re able to make more advances with our SEO keyword rankings.

Given that clients typically see conversion rates double when a person has visited their site before, we’ve also created a cost-effective remarketing strategy. This enables Envisage to reach people with creative assets that Envisage has already generated, with content that fully showcases their expertise and range of solutions.

We’ve also worked with Envisage to improve their social media strategy, helping them reach out to their followers and show their full capabilities.

Envisage Associates have been a joy to work with and we’ve felt like part of their team throughout our journey with them. We can see why they have so many satisfied customers.

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