DTC 103: 📦 BIGGEST SEO mistakes
May 21, 2023
Content Tag

Saturday, October 30, 2021

Facebook changed its name to Meta but couldn’t get the username "Meta" on their own app 😂

This brand already has the username. Sounds like a nice payday is coming their way!

In this newsletter, you’ll find...

✅ Biggest SEO Mistakes.

🤑 Amazon A+ content.

🍦 Email strategy – early access.

Read till the end to access exclusive DTC swag. 😎

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Biggest SEO Mistakes

😭 Toys R Us spent $5.1M on a domain and forgot to set up 301 redirects.

😨 Overstock.com traded discounts for backlinks and lost $1.01 B in revenue.

😳 JCPenney paid for links and dropped from #1 to #68 for "living room furniture."

It’s easy to look at the above blunders and think "those are rookie errors." The ugly truth is that SEO is hard, and even the best mess up.

The biggest SEO mistakes DTC brands make and how to make sure they don’t happen to you.👇

🤑 Mistake 1: Focusing on increasing traffic not revenue

The measure of great SEO isn’t traffic. It’s revenue.

Your leadership team 100% expects to see revenue from your efforts. Sure, traffic is important, but only as it relates to the bottom line.

Some of the revenue-based KPIs you should already be tracking include:

  • Average Order Value (AOV).
  • Lifetime Value (LTV).
  • Monthly Recurring Revenue (MRR).
  • Conversion Rate (CR).

Consider using a bottom-up keyword strategy over the traditional top-down play. Bottom funnel keywords (long-tail + brand-focused) generate big money for brands.

This revenue will later help fund content creation focused on broad, non-brand terms at the top of the funnel.

❌ Mistake 2: Creating Content No One Cares About

No writer wakes up one morning and decides "I want to create content that no one reads!"

But that’s the inevitable outcome when brands don’t have a content strategy or they solely rely on keywords to drive their process.

Keyword research tools can give you a general idea of what people search for but are often inaccurate and misleading.

Instead, survey and interview your users and hear from them what would be helpful. Tools like Hotjar and Typeform make this a breeze.

Your brand’s content doesn’t have to be Pulitzer or Newbery caliber, but it should at least interest your audience and leave them wanting more.

Here are some tools that can help you give people what they want (no psychic powers required):

SparkToro – an audience research platform that helps identify the types of content your target audience likes and consumes.

Answer the Public – a search query tool that provides insight into questions people ask Google about topics related to your niche.

Frase.io – a tool that helps marketers research, write, and optimize quality content in minutes using the power of machine learning and AI.


To say that marketers have been heavily impacted by iOS 14.5 would be the understatement of the year. 😓

While we haven’t found a time machine that can take us back to the good ol’ days of sales attribution (yet), we have found a way you can squeeze more out of your paid media spend.

DTCers, meet Black Crow AI. 👋

Black Crow is a new machine learning platform that leverages the power of first-party data to supercharge retargeting and prospecting performance.

And brands using it are driving millions (I repeat, m-i-l-l-i-o-n-s) in incremental profits.

They’ve put together this case study guide to show you how DTC brands like Solo Stove, Bearaby, and Shorty Love have used Black Crow to reduce their CPA by eliminating wasteful ad spend and unlock up to 50% net new customers.

👉 Download Black Crow’s case study guide to find out exactly how these brands did it.

Biggest SEO Mistakes – Part 2

📈 Mistake 3: Forgetting About Conversion Optimization

No matter where you fall on the SEO VS. CRO responsibilities debate, one thing is clear. When no one converts, everybody loses.

Conversions go hand in hand with traffic and when both are optimized, baby, we’ve got something special.

CRO is all about split testing and finding which version of a page generates the most conversions from your traffic.

Will you run an A/B split test, multivariate test, or some other test?

Whatever you decide, you’ll need a testing plan.

Your plan should:

  1. Identify which pages you want to test and build a hypothesis.
  2. Include a pipeline of things you want to test and prioritize.
  3. Specify what type of test to run (a/b, multivariate, split URL).
  4. Define your primary, secondary, and monitoring goals.
  5. Set a recurring testing schedule.

Once you have your testing plan, you need the right software to carry it out and there’s no shortage of tools like VWO and Google Optimize.

😤 Mistake 4: Avoiding the Technical Stuff

Content is just one part of SEO.

There’s the technical side like JavaScript SEO, mobile web performance, site architecture, and tons more. Brands who lean into the technical piece will come out ahead, as Google’s algorithm continues to evolve.

Web Performance:

In May, Google updated its page experience ranking signals based on what it calls Core Web Vitals.

Google evaluates web pages on desktop and mobile devices and scores the experience. That score factors into search engine ranking.

Use Google’s Measure tool to get your score and a report with highlighted areas for improvement. Making updates can help improve your rankings.

Internal Links:

SEOs generally do a good job of earning links from other sites but often overlook internal links. Internal links are like roads that connect the neighborhoods of your website.

Links create traffic flow.

Pages with no internal links (orphan pages) are unfindable and unusable roads. Pages with only one internal link (dead-end pages) don't allow through traffic and offer limited use to visitors.

Google likes well-planned websites.

The better your roads and infrastructure, the easier it is for Google to navigate your neighborhood, and Google prefers sending traffic to well-planned websites because they offer a good user experience.

The moral of the story is, make your internal links a top priority.

Technical Audit:

Drivers put a lot of wear and tear on cars, so much in fact that they need regular maintenance. Websites are the same.

New pages get added frequently, code changes, and stuff moves all the time.

If an audit isn’t being run on your website at least once a quarter, you’re leaving yourself vulnerable to SEO issues that may start minor but could compound into bigger problems.

Tools like Sitebulb and ContentKing will automate crawling, data collection, and SEO recommendations.

Are you digging SEO?

Reply and let us know – we want to make sure we’re covering the exact topics you care about!


📣 This just in: Podcasts are number one!

Kantar Media’s 2021 Media Reactions report outlined that podcast advertising has dethroned influencer marketing as the most receptive form of digital advertising.

At the same time, testing a new channel can be tough to navigate…

Don’t worry, Podcorn’s here to help you do just that!

With over 50,000 podcasters to choose from, Podcorn makes it easy for brands to advertise with some of the most prominent shows out there, or to discover the best independent podcasters (with hyper-loyal listeners).

Their easy-to-use self-serve platform helps you launch a campaign in a matter of minutes and instantly begin receiving proposals. Not into DIY? Leverage Podcorn’s full-service option and have Podcorn's experts take care of every last detail – all with guaranteed deliverables.

👉 Launch your campaign brief or schedule a strategy session with Podcorn today!

Amazon A+ Content

A+ Content is the most underrated Amazon feature!

First, what is A+ content?

It’s a feature that enables brands to change the product descriptions of branded ASINs by utilizing enhanced images, high quality videos and rich text.

It’s a killer opportunity to stand out from competitors.

Our top tips for A+ Content:

📦 Utilize image keywords – alt-text (or image keywords) indexes in Amazon’s search engine. The character spaces are extremely limited, but it does help for both visual impairments and SEO!

📦 Use bold imagery with a focus on branding –most sellers on Amazon have very poor branding on their images. Don’t be that brand!

📦 Keep it seamless and unified –use the same modules and photos on all your A+ Content brand-wide, but switch it to color match the specific product.

📦 Challenge your creative team look past Amazon’s limitations and blend images across modules to create a unique experience

TIP: Comparison charts are a hit! So are icons.

📦 Don’t be afraid to repeat your main selling points – buyers will scan and look at different parts of your listing.

Here’s a strong example from BioSteel that crushes:

✅ Good use of the large photo

✅ The colors and brand flow perfectly

✅ Uses and features are all outlined

✅ Can scroll through with ease and without too much reading

✅ Incorporates lifestyle images with a special feature from Patty Mahomes himself.

The Pilothouse Amazon team delivering 🔥 per usual!

Email of the day

✅ The transitions between sections are killer – love the waves

✅ We love a good countdown clock, especially around a new product

❌ Too much copy (at least for us!) We’d suggest breaking this up into multiple emails or placing the "How it works" section on the landing page that the CTA takes you to.


🚨 DTCX Virtual Summit is back Nov 3–4! Join Seth Godin, Ezra Firestone, and other top eCommerce leaders discussing the new, what’s working, and what’s coming for DTC CX.*

💰 Famous DTC brand Birchbox is bought by a Healthcare company.

🚘 Tesla's market cap hits $1T after Hertz agrees to buy 100,000 of its cars.

💰 Facebook is spending at least $10B this year on its metaverse division.

🤝 TikTok & Zapier: Lead Generation with CRM integration enables seamless lead management.

🤯 Attest raises $60M to expand its no-code approach to research surveys-as-a-service, which taps 110,000,000 consumers in 49 countries.


🔊 Have you heard our latest podcasts?

♻️ Learn how Fussy Deodorant Lowers Blended CaC with Cofounder Matt Kennedy.

🦷 Spotlight Oral Care Goes Viral on TikTok with Cofounder Dr. Lisa Creaven and VP Marketing Siobhan Nolan.

🧵 Cornering the $4.2B Quilting Market, with David Mifsud from Missouri Star Quilt Co.

🚽 Why YouTube is the Secret Behind this DTC Bidet Brand’s Success, with Thomas Lotrecchiano from Omigo.

Don’t forget to rate the DTC Podcast on Apple (⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️)

DTC Newsletter is written by Thomas Schreiber, Collin Tate, Sadie Evans, and Rebecca Knight.

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