November 9, 2016

From Retention To Acquisition: SEO With Feather & Black

Figaro Digital spoke with Katy Ingram, head of marketing, Feather & Black, ahead of her panel appearance at the Digital Marketing Conference.

As head of marketing, Ingram has been overhauling Feather & Black’s marketing strategy, moving focus from retention to acquisition. “[SEO has been] a big investment area for us; over the past 12 months we’ve been really honing the display and paid search activity, so this year is all about focusing on SEO. I think the reason why that’s important is actually from a visibility perspective, thinking about the customer, you need to be as visible as you can be, naturally and in terms of paid search. The real winners out there in the marketplace are ranking highly for both.”

As well as this focus shift, Feather & Black has begun implementing a new content strategy to facilitate their SEO goals. “This year it’s all about going back to reviewing our keywords and our ranking strategy for that, and supporting the SEO area with a lot of content. We’re working with a number of publishers in terms of really getting content SEO out there. The plan for that is really to help drive traffic to the website.”

But in terms of industry specifics, Feather & Black must approach things in a different way to a typical FMCG brand. High-ticket items like furniture are a considered purchase, and not something that an ad campaign can encourage a consumer to buy on impulse.

“Obviously if you’ve got high ticket items then you can afford to invest a little bit more, because it costs in. We are mindful that we’re focussing on beds, mattresses, some of the big-ticket items, rather than the low-value paid ads, and that’s really helping us to be visible for the customer and drive traffic to the website,” explains Katy. “Also if you look at the customer research cycle for big-ticket items, it can be over several months – and so you don’t know at what point your customer is going to start researching, or when they’re getting closer to the action. Paid search is great for when you’re trying to close the deal. So, it’s good for visibility at all ends, but particularly if you’re trying to drive those conversions close to the purchase side of things.”

“A good proportion of our customers will go and research in stores before they choose to purpose online. And we’re seeing big ticket items being purchased online as well as in-store- obviously not quite as frequently, but it certainly doesn’t put customers off buying our top-of-the-range mattresses in terms of their customer journey.”

What then, we asked Ingram, do marketers need to be focusing on moving forward retail? “There’s still a lot of people who are trying to manage their data and their attribution, so they can understand what’s working online. And for me, personalisation – we’re all talking about it but how many of us are doing it to the best that we can in terms of offering a true, personalised experience to the customer? It’s important that we’re delivering that exceptional customer experience, investing in imagery, great content, and easy information that customers can get at online. It isn’t rocket science, it’s still about delivering an easy shopping experience to the customer, and really understanding what it is they want in order to help facilitate it.”

Katy Ingram will join a panel of expert speakers at our Digital Marketing Conference on November 30 – Get Your Tickets Now