Challenge

If left untreated the effects of meningitis can be life-changing. Many mistake the symptoms for a cold or a fever, and few know what to do when faced with a life-threatening emergency.

Meningitis Now actively campaigns to end the devastation brought about by meningitis, through funding research, raising awareness, and providing people in need with life saving information.

Following a redesign of Meningitis Now’s website, to make it more accessible for mobile users, and an overhaul of its Google Grants account, we turned our attention to improving the charity’s visibility within the organic search results. Our aim, as with all projects before this, was to make Meningitis Now’s first-class medical information as accessible as possible to those who need it most.

Strategy

Ensuring complete coverage on the search results
The wealth of data we had gathered from running Meningitis Now's Google Grants account gave us a strong understanding of how the charity’s content performed within the organic search results.

Meningitis Now ranked well for generic, high-volume terms, such as “meningitis”, “fever meningitis”, and “spinal meningitis rash”, however the charity had little to no visibility for lesser known types of meningitis, such as “neonatal meningitis”, “meningococcal meningitis” and “viral meningitis”. Using the insights gathered from Meningitis Now’s Google Grants data, which included actual keyword impression volumes (rather than estimates), we made the case for developing new content around lower volume terms.

Building up a strong Domain Authority 
Incoming links from other high authority sites are a vital part of Google’s ranking algorithm, and on a more fundamental, forget-about-SEO-for-a-minute level, they also give people a clear, clickable path to the site.

Using a tool called Mention we monitored all online mentions of Meningitis Now and began to collate a list of sites and articles that referenced the charity, but didn’t provide a link to the site. We then focussed on attaining links from these sites, which included the BBC, Guardian and Sky, in a bid to boost Meningitis Now’s Domain Authority. 

Results

Since launching Meningitis Now’s SEO campaign, the charity’s rankings within the search engine results have significantly improved:

  • Organic traffic increased as a % share of the site’s overall traffic from 44% in Q1 2016 to 63% in Q4 2016
  • In the last two quarters of 2016, organic sessions were 107% higher than the same time period in the previous year (824,000 vs 398,000)
  • With the rise in sessions, came a 128% rise in the number of PDF downloads year-on-year (22,000 vs 10,000)
  • The number of followed linking root domains to Meningitis Now’s site increased by 46% in just ten months (525 vs 360)
  • Meningitis Now’s Domain Authority has jumped from 48 to 66 - its Domain Authority is now higher than any of it’s competitors.

“Working with Torchbox has been easy, efficient and most importantly effective. Between us we agreed the goals and they undertook a plan of agreed action, explaining the process at every step. They made recommendations, made clear and precise plans and reported back at every stage. We are continuing to work with them to help with all aspects of our SEO, and have now extended this to A/B testing.”

– David Clifford, Website Manager, Meningitis Now