⬆️ Winners in nomination Search Innovation
Google Partner

Accomplishing a 7x growth in organic traffic within a 2-year timeframe for an online watch retailer

Reviewer: Oleg Gavrilyuk
Head of Optimizers
5.00 2 ratings
Accomplishing a 7x growth in organic traffic within a 2-year timeframe for an online watch retailer


Swiss watches online store, providing services for the purchase and delivery of original watches and jewelry of the world’s leading brands.

Our goal

Growth in positions and targeted organic traffic for the key brands of Swiss watches:

  • Rolex
  • Audemars Piguet
  • Hublot
  • Breguet
  • Zenith
  • Cartier
  • Richard Mille
  • Vacheron Constantin
  • Omega
  • and others.

Total number of priority brands in promotion — 35.

Source data

  • Site: large online store, 100K+ pages
  • Region: Ukraine
  • Language: Russian, Ukrainian
  • Preferred search engine: Google
  • CMS: OpenCart
  • Seasonality: no distinct seasonality
  • Start of work: October 2020

Niche and competitor analysis

The Swiss watch niche is highly competitive, with the following being ranked in the top 10:

  • specialized online stores (direct competitors);
  • mass-market watch retailers with a separate section for Swiss watches;
  • official brand websites;
  • pawnshops;
  • marketplaces (Prom, OLX)

The table below provides a comparative analysis of the basic metrics of the promoted site with competitors as of May 2023 (the data is taken from Ahrefs.com):

# Target Domain Rating Domains Total Keywords Total Traffic
1 Client site 31 603 4381 5071
2 timeshop.com.ua 27 1129 5933 30714
3 luxwatch.ua 35 1772 7591 12471
4 vector-d.ua 35 813 5566 10692
5 24k.ua 35 1195 8211 4409
6 noblesse.ua 33 169 1813 2020
7 luxgroups.ua 25 528 3617 1862
8 lombard-perspectiva.com.ua 1.2 108 1490 1333
9 luxchrono.com.ua 2.7 52 1502 1248
10 delux.com.ua 3.8 109 1187 1238
11 crystalgroup.ua 17 201 1498 1211
12 vipgold.in.ua 17 222 2539 886

Searching for the site growth points

To identify potential points for growth and expansion of the site structure, we conducted the following analyses:

  • research of competitors’ sites and their top pages by traffic;
  • keyword analysis using such tools as Google Keyword Planner, Ahrefs, and Serpstat, compiling a list of missing semantics;
  • studied the queries in Google Search Console that have impressions yet insufficiently high positions.This helped us to identify the areas for improvement.

These methods of analysis allow you to maximize the quality of the website structure in practically any niche.

We have identified the growth points for site to optimize and promote the following types of pages:

  • Swiss watch brands;
  • collections by brand;
  • popular watch models;
  • filter pages (type, purpose, material, body, functions)

Working process

Technical optimization

First and foremost, our specialists conducted a detailed technical audit of the site in order to detect any critical errors in internal optimization, having checked it based on 43 points. Improvements to the site were required for 19 items, 10 of which were of high priority.

Program implementation Inspection result Priority Contractor
1. IP website analysis correct low software engineer
2. Checking the website for viruses, malicious scripts, and blacklisting ОК high software engineer
3. Domain history analysis on WhoIs and web.archive ОК high software engineer
4. Checking for the elements that may negatively impact user’s interaction with the website ОК high software engineer
5. Checking for availability and correctness of forming SEO-Friendly URLs (human-readable URL) ОК high software engineer
6. Checking for the gluing of mirrors and complete duplications ОК high software engineer
7. Checking for a complete duplication of content correct high software engineer
8. Checking for technical pages, pages with duplicate content, or with no content in the index correct high software engineer
9. Checking for correctness of the server’s responses to the page request ОК
10. Checking the page code for HTML and CSS errors correct medium software engineer
11. Checking for availability and errors in SSL certificate ОК high software engineer
12. Checking for hidden or spam links to external resources correct high software engineer
13. Checking for the correctness of robots.txt file set up correct high software engineer/content manager
14. Connect GWT correct high software engineer
15. Connect GA ОК high optimizer
16. Connect Google Tag Manager correct high optimizer or software developer
17. Check Sitemap.xml correct medium software engineer
18. Checking for CSS and JS availability ОК medium software engineer
19. Checking microformats correct medium software engineer
20. Checking social media buttons correct low software engineer
21. Checking website loading speed correct high software engineer
22. Checking for the availability and optimization of multilingualism correct medium software engineer
23. Checking for the mobile version of the website ОК medium software engineer
24. Checking the adaptability of the site on different types of devices ОК medium software engineer
25. Checking for the correct output of the text content ОК high software engineer
26. Tracking Stat.Aweb content in the SEO-monitor correct low software engineer
27. Checking for the elements (commercial factors) on the pages required for ranking in this topic correct high software engineer
28. Checking for the partial content duplication ОК medium software engineer
29. Eliminate the removal of irrelevant and OOS items ОК high software engineer
30. Checking the indexation of reviews on the site ОК medium software engineer
31. Is the content visible with the JavaScript turned off ОК medium software engineer


Content Inspection result Priority Contractor
32. Checking for affiliates ОК high
33. Checking the geo settings in GWT ОК high optmizer
34. Checking for the correctness of forming meta tags correct high software engineer/content manager
35. Checking for availability/uniqueness of the web content ОК high content manager
36. Checking for availability of landing pages for semantic core ОК low content manager
37. Checking for the text content optimization ОК medium software engineer
38. Checking for availability of content formatting ОК medium software engineer


Structure and re-linking Inspection result Priority Contractor
39. Checking for the “bread crumbs” menu correct high software engineer
40. Checking for the re-linking on the website ОК low software engineer
41. Checking for indexed, optimized filter pages ОК low software engineer
42. Checking for the broken links correct medium software engineer


Usability Inspection result Priority Contractor
43. Usability correct medium software engineer


Semantic core and on-page optimization

Once the potential growth points had been identified, our team started collecting the semantic core in Russian and Ukrainian languages. We conducted a thorough analysis, resulting in the collection of 4,037 search queries combined into 366 semantic groups (for most cases, 1 page = 1 semantic group).

An example of semantics

“Swiss Watches” group (home page):

Rolex Group (brand page)

For each page, we wrote optimized meta tags, title and description, including required keywords, and added emoji to increase CTR.

Working with the content

Following the semantic core analysis, our specialists prepared a detailed technical specification for the texts, where they specified the required volume, structure, topical keywords, as well as the questions for the FAQ block.

Within the framework of the project, we worked on creating new texts for a number of site pages, as well as refining existing materials.

The writing was done in-house, therefore the client received texts of the highest quality possible.

Implementation of the Ukrainian version of the site

Over the past year, our team has implemented a Ukrainian version of the site, having translated all text content. Today, the organic traffic of this version is 80-100 clicks, which is ⅕ of the total traffic volume.

Checking the site for compliance with the requirements of the Instructions for Assessors

E-commerce sites belong to the YMYL (Your Money or Your Life) type, which means they have to comply with the highest E-E-A-T (experience, expertise, authority, and reliability) standards.

Following our analysis of the E-E-A-T factors, our optimizers provided recommendations for improvement. Here is a sample list of improvements implemented by our team.

We added information blocks on the following product pages:

  • Payment and shipping
  • Warranty
  • Refund
  • Our advantages
  • Guide on choosing a watch size

We have implemented the following on the product category pages:

  • a table with the key features of the watch (when hovering over the product)
  • FAQ block
  • “In stock” label

Created and filled out the service pages:

  • About the company: history, mission, values, certificates
  • Payment, shipping, refund
  • Warranty
  • Renovation
  • Customer Reviews

The footer has also been refined:

  • We have added company ranking widgets from Google My Business and Facebook profiles
  • Contact details (Click-to-call phone numbers)
  • Payment Methods
  • Picture links to the company’s social media.

Building up an external link mass

To achieve success in promotion, it is essential to pay attention not only to the number of external links, but to their quality as well. Taking into account that this niche is characterized by a high level of competition, it is high-quality backlinks that are the key factor of success.

Working with the toxic backlinks

Taking into account the continuous appearance of low-quality links, our team regularly (every 2-3 months) revises the backlinks, and we reject the toxic ones using Google Disavow Tool.

Building up the links

We used the following methods to build up the links:

  1. Outreach — “white” method of increasing the number of links to the site, which is to find quality web resources and personal arrangements with the owners on placing. This is one of the most complex, yet effective ways to increase the number of donors.
  2. Exchanges — this method involves placing articles on quality sites with the help of link exchanges. Unlike Outreach, this method significantly simplifies the search for sites, as the exchange already has an agreement with the owners, and we can select a site from the list, taking into account the necessary criteria and costs.
  3. Directories and aggregators — the method is used to diversify the link profile, increase credibility and attract a larger audience.
  4. Crowd-marketing — a link-building method which involves posting links on topical forums and is used to increase the diversity of a link profile.

The Chart of link profile growth on the project for the last 2 years:

Results on the project

There have been no tangible results of promotion on the project for quite a long time (about a year), that is, the result did not correlate with the work done. We clearly recognized the weaknesses of the site and gradually moved towards the goal.

Once we implemented most of the recommendations on technical optimization and E-E-A-T, filled the site with high-quality texts and placed a number of quality backlinks – the project started to actively grow and since then it has shown a stable boost at each update.

At this point, the organic traffic of the project has doubled compared to pre-war levels.

The chart of free search traffic from analytics.google.com

The chart of clicks and impressions from Search Console

Over the past 3 years of working on the project, our team has managed to increase the percentage of the output of priority categories queries:

  • in top 10 — up to 97%;
  • in top 5 — up to 86%;
  • in top 3 — up to 68%.

The number of queries that are ranked (according to the ahrefs.com service):

  • position 1-3 — 472 queries;
  • position 4-10 — 671 queries;
  • position 11-20 — 645 queries.

Please see the screenshots below for some examples of positions in several priority groups.

“Swiss Watches” group:

Rolex group:

Audemars Piguet group:

Breguet group:

What’s next

Work plan for the next six months:

  • Content optimization for Featured Snippets with the goal of ranking in zero submission
  • Regular publishing of informative blog articles by brands
  • Link insertion into topical articles that rank in the top 10
  • Working out filtering by MF/LF queries on brands


While the competition in the niche is high, we are proud that our team managed to hold the desired positions and achieve our traffic growth objectives. This is an evidence of our high level of professional competence and the effectiveness of our promotional strategy.

Key factors for success:

  • integrated approach to promotion: technical, internal and external optimization;
  • working on the E-E-A-T factors;
  • working on expanding the semantics and elaborating on the filtering;
  • high-quality and diversified linkbuilding.

Project participants

Project Manager: Kateryna Tymoshenko

Optimizers: Lehkobyt Andrii

Linker: Yevhen Fedchenko

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