I’ve been working in SEO and digital marketing since 2010. This article shows the ranking results of my clients from 2019-2021. I don’t normally post about my client work online but here we go.
I once missed out on a job as the Head of SEO at the biggest real estate website in the country after being headhunted by them when I was still working at the distant 3rd biggest real estate website in the country. This was around 2018 or 2019. I had come 2nd in this job position and asked for feedback on what held me back. Their response was that the only noticeable difference was that the successful candidate was always blogging and tweeting about SEO.
This was disappointing to hear as I used to blog about SEO and digital marketing quite a lot for my previous employers when I worked at digital marketing agencies in the past. It turns out that since I’d left, they’d all either changed the authorship of my articles to someone else or the blogs were not republished on newer versions of their websites. Most of the content is very outdated and irrelevant now, but their existence might have helped me get a life-changing job.
I’ve since dug up a lot of my old articles via archive.org and republished them here in case anyone ever wants to see evidence that Keith Nallawalla blogs about SEO. I’d rather see them read this article instead and see a bit about my recent wins when I returned agency-side as the Head of SEO at one of Australia’s best SEO agencies.
As I have recently changed jobs, I no longer have access to client reports or analytics data, I’ll be using their SEMrush keyword charts as a measurement of success, as the more rankings at the top of Google that you get, the more traffic and conversions you will get as a result. I will also be keeping my former clients a secret, as some might not want their competitors knowing what their strategies are, plus my former employer might not want other agencies to know who their clients are either.
I feel a little bit silly publishing this article as I really don’t like to brag about my work as a lot of other Melbourne SEO guys on LinkedIn. I do need to acknowledge however that SEO is a collaborative effort. Without my content writers and link building team, in particular, I would not have been able to get these results on my own. Hopefully, these results can reflect better on my work than on this particular site. I am not a developer and this site needs a lot of work. Not being a commercial website, it’s really just a content dumping ground for myself and my friends.
Other than this list of clients, I also had several link orders for in-house SEOs and marketers at various companies, plus a large order for another agency.
Arcade Machine Wholesaler (Shopify)
Being a giant nerd, this client quickly became one of my favourites. This company is the importer of a certain brand of flat-pack, ¾ scale arcade machines and digital pinball machines for home and office use. They started SEO with us in early 2021 as a very fresh domain. We got this lead as our agency had previously performed great work on the owners’ other ventures in the past.
This company was facing the issue that all the other companies that were stocking their products were outranking them, even though the wholesaler had better pricing, deals and actually shipped nationally whilst bigger stores like EB Games or JB HIFI will usually need you to order from a nearby store that has the products in stock.
The strategy here was to rewrite product descriptions instead of using the manufacturer’s description which was in use by all the other stockists and the US manufacturer site as well. As this website had the exact same copy for all its products and no backlinks to boost its Domain Authority, it really didn’t stand a chance.
Working with this brand was a lot of fun as I’d find out about upcoming releases before major events such as E3 where the new pre-orders would be announced. I was and still am active in their Facebook community group.
Charity Client (WordPress)
I don’t recall exactly when I started working on this client’s campaign. They had been a PPC client for our agency for a long time before we sold in SEO services. This client is the Australian branch of an international aid charity. I loved this client as they were very transparent on their finances and made it clear where the donations are being spent.
Being a charity, their marketing budget is quite scarce, this reflects on their ancient website which was very buggy and was held together with sticky tape. This added some challenges.
The SEMRush chart for this client doesn’t do the campaign justice as they migrated a large chunk of the site to a 3rd party website. This was all relating to jobs and careers and made up a big chunk of their traffic and rankings in the past. They were very happy with the revenue raised from Organic Search. We had them ranking 1-2 for keywords about donating to specific 3rd world countries and ranked quite high for various recent disasters as well.
There was a lot of content optimisation for this client, as well as link-building to key pages. Being a very well established charity made this site be in a solid position to begin with from natural link acquisition but getting some extra links to these deeper pages worked wonders.
Curtains and Blinds website (Big Commerce)
This was one of my first clients at the agency back in March 2019. You can’t see it in the screenshot, but in early 2019 right before I started they had a new website built from a pretty well known Melbourne digital agency who completely tanked the site in every way imaginable. I spent my first few months getting them to fix basic stuff like properly sizing images, adding all the custom title tags and meta descriptions that used to be there. Getting them to use the previous URL structure or redirect URLs (depending on the situation). Even a lot of the styling was just bad. This client had spent a LOT of money on this new site and it converted half as well as the old site and basically fell out of Google for a period, costing them tens of thousands of dollars in lost revenue each month until we got it back to where it used to be and then back up even better.
After the initial mess of a website was cleaned up, my biggest project was launching dozens of new category pages, one for each type of curtain or blind suited to each room of the house. This came first and went live at some point in 2020. This was based on keyword research where I discovered a lot of people trying to find certain types of blinds or curtains that would suit a certain room of the house. Because the client did not have these landing pages, they rarely ranked for such terms and if they did rank, it was usually a blog post.
The best thing I did was to create individual category pages for each type of curtain and colour combination. This started going live in early 2021 and the last of the category body content went live in June-July 2021 which massively grew their page 1 rankings. The theory behind this was that if someone knows the colour + type of curtain that they want, then they are probably ready to buy and are now shopping around by price. This worked far better in terms of navigation and qualified traffic than my previous idea for the shopping by room of the house idea. I wish I’d done this project first.
The owner of this business was so happy with our work (our paid search and social media team were also doing a great job) that she took us all out to lunch at Rockpool at Crown a few months before I left and even offered for us to come to stay with her at her massive lodge at Mount Hotham if we ever want to go skiing. I wonder if the offer still stands!
Electrician Client (WordPress)
A lot of tradies have trouble understanding the value of SEO and digital marketing to grow their business. Our agency actually had two electrician clients. One with a good budget and one with the smallest budget possible. It’s safe to say that investing in your website with a lot of well written suburb-specific landing pages and optimised service pages for every kind of work you do really does pay off. The other client wasn’t mine, but their chart has not grown much at all.
This client was receiving links, new pages and blogs every month. They also did a lot of electrical work around my house for cheap which was great. I’ve been able to turn my garage into a home office with better lighting and heating, plus some other work was done in other parts of the house. Definitely going to miss this campaign.
Escape Room Client (WordPress)
This was another recent client for me starting with us in early 2021 after a competitor of ours who we were often pitching against rebuilt their website and totally obliterated their traffic and rankings. Their site had previously ranked very well having achieved a lot of natural links and PR for being the first escape room company in Australia.
What also boggled my mind was that they didn’t have Google Analytics on their site until we created an account for them. Let’s just say that their previous agency was not as impressive as their name suggested. That’s a joke for Melbourne SEOs by the way who should be able to tell who I’m referring to.
My main project here was adding additional generic pages that were optimised around team building in Melbourne to promote their in-person escape rooms. Then also an online team building page to promote their online escape room game that anyone in the world can do. They should be launching a page about their best escape rooms for kids around nowish.
I really wanted to take the team here to try this escape room out for a team-building activity one day but lockdowns and then me leaving the company kind of ruined that. My new work is actually within walking distance from one of their locations, but I don’t think I’ll be able to go there because there might be a conflict of interest.
Kitchen and Bathrooms Client (Magento 1)
This client started with us sometime in 2019. They had two physical locations and an eCommerce website. This campaign was very complicated in that they could not ship items too far away from Melbourne as a lot of it is quite large and fragile, such as bathtubs. The website itself was quite old and buggy. They might finally be moving to Magento 2 in 2021. I actually handed over this client to a colleague shortly before I left the company and it appears they have since been hit hard by Google’s Core Web Vitals update in July 2021. Whilst our agency had prepared all our clients for this update, we couldn’t do it for this client as they are planning to redo the site soon anyway. Hopefully, this update has made the owner finally pull the trigger on that budget.
Plastic Surgeon Client (WordPress)
I forgot which SEO agency had this client before us, but they struggled to recover this famous plastic surgeon’s site from Google Medic updates twice, allowing the site to almost completely fall out of Google except for branded terms.
My team and I managed to correct this pretty quickly and the site has been growing ever since. There was a new website build that went live in May 2020, which was not completely smooth but it recovered well. The agency that built their new site was great to work with but I forgot who they are so I can’t give them a shoutout. The growth in July is likely due to the Core Web Vitals update (their developers did a great job on this project) or perhaps they have added a lot of new content I’d recommended, which related to answering a lot of the questions that appear in Google’s “people also ask” section.
It was interesting working with someone so high profile, having been on Real Housewives of Melbourne and being the go-to plastic surgeon for most of Australia’s celebrities and sports stars. My work with this client led to 2 other referral SEO clients.
Printer Cartridge Client (Netsuite)
This was one of our biggest clients. During this campaign, we helped roll out their printer cartridge recycling campaign, a reskin of their site and rolled out a lot of category and subcategory pages for different types of printers.
This is a more collaborative project with my colleague Steve helping out with a lot of printer reviews and blog posts. I really wanted to buy a printer from these guys in June for the end of the financial year sale, but all the printers I liked were out of stock. I guess we did too well on that campaign
This was quite a challenging campaign for us to hold onto as in 2019 our agency hired James P who turned out to be a con artist to manage our paid search team. He destroyed every campaign he touched, including this one. This client took their paid search overseas but kept us for SEO, he then fired the overseas agency for paid search and hired our old head of paid search as a contractor instead.
This was one of the few clients we retained from the period who did not cancel all their services with our agency. James P made almost every PPC client cancel all services with us, devastating the company’s revenue in 2019 and he managed to do this in just a few months before he was fired. He is now a prominent speaker at Melbourne SEO meetups for some reason despite not doing SEO, so I don’t attend those anymore because being around that guy makes me feel physically ill.
Rental Property Agency (WordPress)
This client was interesting as they were very unhappy with their previous account manager. I managed to turn this relationship around by building out location pages, helping them rank high on page 1 for a lot of the suburbs within their service area.
Their site also got hacked a few times due to a complacent developer who never updated the site. I think February 2021 was one of those times, which is why you see a spike in keywords. That led our agency to finally being able to build them a new site. The new site went live after I left sometime in July 2021 so it appears to have some teething issues, but they’ll get it back in order.
They got so busy with clients and enquiries that the web project that was originally meant to go live in late 2020 didn’t actually go live until July 2021 as they had not approved anything or written any of the content for their new pages or had their new photoshoots.
Skin Care Centre + Ecommerce Site (Shopify)
The wife of the plastic surgeon client had a major content project with us in late 2020. They had rebuilt their site in Shopify launching it in May 2020 before they were a client of ours and it included an eCommerce part of the website where they now sell their own products. Due to some bottlenecks on their end, the project has been rolled out very slowly throughout 2021. There was still some more work to be done into late July and August after I left. Hopefully, the client sticks with my old agency and starts a link building component.