Power to the She…& to the SEO

Assignment Snapshot: Pick a favorite multinational company and create a list of 10 keywords you think should be associated with that company and its products. Do a Google Search of those keywords and see where in the results (if at all) you find the company you selected. Go to the company’s site and review their coding to see if any of the words you selected appear on their homepage

If you know me, have read this blog at all or seen some of my discussion posts for the Social Media Masters Program at University of Florida, then you know I am an aspiring yogi. It started after the birth of my first child when I was very overweight and fighting the baby blues. I’ve written about this journey in the Namaste section of this blog so I won’t dive into it here. Part of that journey though, was discovering the Athleta brand. They are yoga clothes for normal people like me. While in my head I may look like this:

yoga pretty

The reality looks more like this:

twister

SO WHAT IS ATHLETA?

logo According to Athleta, they are  Gap Inc.’s premier fitness and lifestyle brand in the rapidly growing women’s active apparel market. Athleta offers high-quality, stylish, and functional apparel, footwear, and accessories across a  wide variety of sports and fitness activities, including crossover apparel and casualwear. Athleta products are found online, in stores, and through catalogs.  Athleta, the premier name in women’s fitness  fashion, values inspiring an active lifestyle from yoga to running to cross-fit. Athleta values motivating others and tapping into our collective power as women. Their slogan or tag line is Power to the She. Athleta was founded in 1998 in Petaluma, California. It started as a catalogue business that grew into online sales and was purchased by Gap Inc. in 2008 for $150 million. Since Gap Inc. acquired Athleta, they have opened  over 80 brick and mortar stores. (as of September 2014)

Ten keywords or keyword phrases for Search Engine Optimization:

  • Womens fitness clothing
  • Womens yoga clothing
  • Discount yoga clothing
  • Womens fitness fashion
  • Yoga clothing
  • Running clothing
  • Athletic clothing
  • Yoga pants
  • Sportswear
  • Yoga brands

I performed a Google search of each keyword phrase. The gallery below shows each result (click on image for larger view):

Athleta chooses to pay for Yoga Brands, Yoga Clothing, Womens Yoga Clothing and Athletic Clothing. Priority appears to be expansion and fighting the perception that they are only a yoga brand based on their purchase of the top spot, left rail for the keyword phrase “Athletic Clothing.” They still clearly emphasize yoga based on these searches and you see they paid for a top right rail spot for the keyword phrase “Womens Yoga Clothing.”

In reviewing their homepage, some of the keywords appear directly on the page visible to all. First, in the title of the site captured above the URL (see below) you will see “Womens” “Yoga Clothing” and “Run Clothing”.

 

The words “Fashion” and “Sport” also appear on the homepage. Looking at their site, they are really focused on performance, style and versatility. If I were going to redo my list, I would consider adding these in but with clothing or fashion also included.

In looking at the site’s HTML and alt tags, I found the following (click to view larger image):

Under metadata the description reads:

“The ultimate performance apparel for women. Shop Athleta yoga clothing, running clothing, swimwear & more online and in stores. Clothing designed and tested by and for women athletes.”

The metadata description is formatted well for SEO based on some of my choices. Below you will see the keywords that Athleta uses in the metadata above. The bold ones align with my choices above :

  • Athleta
  • athletica
  • womens yoga clothing
  • swimwear
  • running clothing
  • athletic clothing
  • workout clothing
  • exercise clothing
  • swimwear
  • tankini
  • bikini
  • one piece swimsuit
  • yoga pants
  • yoga tops
  • running tops
  • running shorts
  • skort
  • golf clothing
  • tennis clothing
  • special sizes
  • petite sizes
  • plus sizes
  • tall sizes
  • organic cotton
  • tights
  • yoga tights
  • run tights

They wisely use a common misspelling of their brand “Athletica”, the importance of which was discussed in lecture this week. Given the look and layout of their homepage, I would also consider adding performance wear and athletic style to keyword phrase choices.

Overall, based on this metadata and my Google searches, Athleta does a nice job capitalizing on SEO for the customer they want to target.

For me, the love affair is about comfort and price. I’m not a size zero and I want to practice without being half-naked. Athleta clothes accomplish this for me and I’m grateful for that.

12 thoughts on “Power to the She…& to the SEO

  1. Kelly –

    I also used Athleta for my multinational company. I’m also very happy that we came to the same result that Athleta has a pretty effective SEO campaign. My biggest surprise in your keywords was the term – discount yoga clothing. In my opinion, Athleta is far from discount prices. I also think that sportswear did not come up on the first few pages because it is a dated type word. I believe words such as athletic, active, and workout are used more often then sportswear now. I also really enjoyed how you took images and thumbnails of the search results and added them to your blog. I think I may take your idea and use it for future assignments. I also found it interesting that most of your keywords did not match the Athleta keywords. We both did not use keywords related to sizes or tights. I am currently at the beach wearing an Athleta bikini, but didn’t add it as a keyword in my results. I found that the golf and tennis results to be surprising as well, since those are not the sports I would relate to the brand.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Another Athleta lover! That’s great. I was surprised that they did go so in depth on particular clothing items and I NEVER would have thought to mention golf. I agree that Athleta is not discount perse but when it comes to the big yoga clothing companies (Lululemon and Prana) it is the more discount of the three. That is why I said that but you are right…it’s still all pricey! Thanks for commenting on this. I’ll be sure to read your blog!

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  2. Hi Kelly!

    What an excellent look at Athleta’s website and SEO. Athleta is a brand that I also enjoy as a Crossfitter so I enjoyed your blog post very much. I thought your use of images helped paint the picture and explain with ease how Athleta positions themselves with their SEO campaign. One keyword that I might have included in my top 10 would have been swimsuits. That is actually how I originally found their brand a few year ago. The quality of their brand, namely their swimsuits keeps me coming back and purchasing more. That first swimsuit experience eventually led me to purchase other women’s athletic wear.

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    • Hi Stephanie. Thanks for commenting. Your point is well taken on swimsuits and good advice. It’s interesting because I made my list blindly just as an exercise to see how I would do. Then I looked at their keywords. Some aligned but most did not. I would not have thought to go into specific items of clothing (clearly). I do love their swimwear. As an athlete, it is the first swimwear that I find supportive but still cute!

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  3. Hi Kelly,

    Love your passion for yoga, as it’s something I can identify with. I participate in classes on a mountaintop every Sunday (hopefully I can maintain that with Sunday and Monday night course deadlines LOL)! Also noticed that so many other classmates are into yoga and other athletic activity. As regards your SEO study on Athleta, I liked the way you tied in their meta tags’ in terms of its alignment to your own keywords, and were able to deduce a successful SEO strategy on Athleta’s part. My selected company, Caribbean Airlines, did not fare as well, and I’ve since learned why, which I will post on my blog this week as a follow-up to my initial study and submission of same. It was also excellent that you were able to observe the company’s apparent shift from traditional wear in the category, to a more expansive line. If this is the case, it would be a deliberate marketing strategy, and what better place to execute this than in their digital realm. Great work!

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    • Yoga on a mountaintop. Color me jealous! I am going to my first yoga retreat in October. I am so very excited about it. It’s on a beach. Yaaay! Thanks for commenting on my blog. I’m very new to the metadata and SEO aspect of digital content. I’m more a content creator and previously I would have said all this is the programmer/”web guy” responsibility! I am learning now it all goes hand in hand.

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  4. Hi Kelly! LOVED the visuals in your blog post. I think the fact that you are familiar and passionate with the brand and new exactly what keywords to use to find Athleta is exactly what the company is hoping for. It proves that their keywords are in tune with what their customers are looking for and is driving the right people to their website. Yoga wear is pretty dominated by places such as Lululemon, Prana, and Zella (Nordstrom’s brand). Did any of these compete with Athleta when you searched your key words?

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    • Hi Audrey, thanks for commenting. YES! They all did. Primarily Lululemon, Prana second and Zella third. Zella wasn’t as prominent though as the first two. I find Lulu a little out of reach economically so Athleta has my loyalty!

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  5. Kelly,

    I enjoyed the post and took note of the use of pictures in engaging your blog followers. I too am an Atheta fan, having purchased swim wear from them in the past. I feel that your keywords aligned with keywords I would have designated for the site. The site itself sells many different types of clothing and therefore it is good on their part that they are covering their bases with as many keywords as possible. I feel like they have a good grasp on how to reach their customers, both with keywords and paid ads. When I was new to the site I would type in the site name directly in rather than going through a search engine. Like the post suggests Athletica is a common misspelling of the brand and I too caught myself on occasion not typing it in correctly or forgetting the exact name. Therefore I feel despite the injustice the customer is doing in butchering their name it would be a further injustice if the company didn’t recognize this common group error. By accepting it they are capitalizing on it and in a world where competition on the internet is growing each day, they are only doing themselves a favor and remaining in the front of the race.

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    • Thanks for your comment Lauren. I appreciate you taking the time to read my blog. I think your points regarding the misspelling are spot on. I laughed when I saw it actually because a good friend of mine constantly calls the store Athletica.

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  6. Hello ,
    Let me say first that your blog is really nice, colors are really friendly and you did an amazing job to present a graphical image of your google search , I wish I could have done it on my blog too but I am still not very familiar with blogging , I hope I will learn more during the class.
    The thing that I do find very interesting is the use of misspelled words to catch the users , it’s really amazing.
    I don’t know how much is the actual percentage of spelling mistakes on a google search but I guess even if its still a small part , there will be much less competition on this smaller part, and in some cases can drive the number of leads quite high. I guess mainly in competitive industries where is expansive to compete with the right keyword it can really help to have a misspelled keyword.
    Thanks

    Liked by 1 person

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