How Outdoor Research Relies on Search Traffic to Drive Website Visits

Content & Messaging
Paid Search
Organic Search & SEO
Site & eCommerce
August 23, 2021
Sporting Goods & Outdoor

Key Takeaways


Outdoor Research is a US brand that produces outdoor activewear. The brand has a compelling founding story and continues to win the hearts of new customers. The company invests in maintaining an evergreen blog section on its website that helps attract relevant search traffic, run tailored paid ads campaigns and manifest a brand story.

Organic Search — Mix of Editorial and SEO-Friendly Content: Outdoor Research (OR) invests in an evergreen Blog on its website. The company mixes keyword-rich SEO-friendly content with editorial-style articles. OR’s blog helps the brand uplift an image of an authentic company that deeply understands the outdoor domain and attract relevant organic search traffic.  

Paid Search — Focus on Search Product Ads: Outdoor Research invested twice as much advertising dollars in paid search than in all other digital channels combined. The brand prefers search product ads over text — between January 2020 and July 2021, 69% of all search ads were product. When it comes to text ads, Outdoor Research leverages its extensive Blog section to widen its search targeting. The company runs ads that capture traffic looking for “backpacking meal ideas” and “best outdoor movies” and directs these visitors to its blog.

Outdoor Research (OR) is an activewear brand with a high-volume traffic website that attracts ~428K visitors per month.

Outdoor Research - Website Traffic

52% of OR’s traffic is driven by search, where 45% comes from organic sources and 7% is paid. Traffic driven by organic search has been on the rise and OR has seen a monthly average of 94K visits from organic search alone. 

Outdoor Research - Website Traffic Channels - Organic and Paid Search

While branded keywords are responsible for 69% of organic search visits, non-branded traffic has been recently on the rise (35% in Jul. 2021 vs. 31% in Jan. 2021)

Share of Organic Traffic Driven by Branded and Non-Branded Keywords

Organic Research maintains an ever-green blog section, where the brand shares impactful stories of solo adventurers, company news and tips about outdoor life.

The brand invests in editorial content to strengthen the brand attribute of a credible and authentic outdoor company. At the same time, continuous content production helps strengthen domain authority, improve SEO ranking and drive new relevant traffic to the site.

OR writes blog posts relevant to the outdoor audience. Company’s most popular articles fall in the education category. The article about washing a down jacket has been the most visited blog post in Outdoor Research’s blog. 

How to Wash Your Down Jacket | 20 Survival Movies to Get You Through The Winter To Come | 10 Tips For Backpacking in the Rain | How to Hike And Backpack In the Heat | What To Wear To Hike A 14er

In addition to SEO-powered articles, Outdoor Research produces editorial-style content. The brand writes about prominent athletes and highlights some brand-led social initiatives. No matter what the topic is, Outdoor Research leverages a magazine-like page layout and artistically touched-up visuals. All together, OR’s blog effectively delivers on two objectives:

  1. Strengthen OR’s brand personality
  2. Support SEO efforts
Outdoor Research - Editorial-Syle Content

Outdoor Research also makes sure its product detail pages are keyword-rich. The company adds a brief product description underneath the title, which is typical for many ecommerce websites. In addition, OR provides lengthy product descriptions elaborating on item features. Such descriptions are usually ~200-300 words in length and help search engines serve the product for relevant searches.

Outdoor Research - Product Detail Page

Combined, all articles collected in the Stories section have driven ~11% of OR’s total inbound search traffic.

Outdoor Research - Share of Inbound Search Traffic

When it comes to paid advertising, since January 2020 Outdoor Research invested twice as much in paid search than in all other digital advertising channels combined.  

Outdoor Research publishes more product than text search ads. Since January 2020, the brand ran 2,865 product ad variations and only 1,451 text ads. 

Outdoor Research - Text Ads - Product Ads

OR sets a very wide targeting for its product ads. Some product ads are set up to capture traffic for up to a hundred different keywords ranging from descriptive titles to need-based and competitors searches.

Outdoor Research - Product Ad Keywords

The brand runs text ads with a much smaller set of keywords, some ads go live only with one or two target keyword variations.



Outdoor Research - Text Ads


Added by: 

Recent Case Studies

Scroll horizontally to view more case studies →