In 2010, 3M needed to figure out how to effectively manage SEO across 5 major businesses each with multiple divisions (60 in all) in 100 countries and totaling 6000 websites. 45% of 3M’s traffic came from organic sources, so this was a huge undertaking which was not as simple as replicating what worked in the United States across all of the other countries.
Craig Berdie, Global Search Marketing Manager at 3M, was up to the challenge of solving this problem. He knew there were a few things that were already going to be an uphill battle: inconsistency between countries, existing websites were created without SEO consideration, the product set evolves at 35% per year, and a lot of content was locked up in PDFs. To figure out how markets varied, Craig did a lot of landing page testing. He figured out that by testing, he could let the numbers speak and each market would find itself winning pages. To address website changes, he put together an "SEO council" of 5 individuals to start which included IT, data management, UI/UX, and content writers. Using BrightEdge, Craig was able to discover high value keywords to track, develop landing pages around those keywords, and measure the rise in rank. Craig and his team were able to stitch together organic traffic data from analytics with conversion data which ultimately allowed them to calculate how much each organic click was worth.
BrightEdge reports showed that 3M experienced large gains in organic traffic for several years. Specifically, they saw 20% growth in organic traffic YoY for 3 consecutive years. That traffic equates to an incremental $25,000 a month in business value for a single business unit on a single topic. That proof, though small in absolute terms, will be significant when rolled out across more of the thousands of products at 3M.
The opportunity to license BrightEdge has been huge for us, very helpful