Client: Vanquis Bank

Best practice SEO techniques implemented over a period of multiple algorithm updates resulting in a top-ranking position for a major target keyword family in a highly competitive marketplace

The team made and implemented detailed technical and content recommendations, supported by a link acquisition strategy, designed to help the client’s site recover from a significant ranking drop following a Google algorithm update


Working within regulatory and compliance limitations in subprime credit cards sector, deliver top 3 ranking positions for highly competitive target keywords on the subject of ‘credit cards for bad credit’. The client was faced with several key obstacles to overcome here, including limited development time for onsite changes, a decline in brand searches impacting CTR and several impactful algorithm updates in the summer after we took on the project. The competitor landscape is complex and includes established brands such as Tesco and Capital One with high ranking position in the SERPs. Finally, the nature of the product placed limitations on the scale of link acquisition that could be undertaken.


Our approach:

  1. Deliver pertinent technical recommendations to resolve historic issues, such as duplicate content and crawling and indexing issues.
  2. Provide detailed content gap analysis coupled with site architecture recommendations to take in account the holistic website structure instead of just top 3 commercial landing pages.
  3. Build out precisely the web page(s) we wanted to upload, covering the following best practice elements:
  • Compelling content
  • Advanced structured data
  • SEO friendly HTML Table
  • User reviews to trigger star ratings
  • E-A-T signals to bring back ‘Trust Cues’
  1. Ongoing link acquisition around the topics of money management and local spending trends using content generated by a consumer survey


Just as the peak post-Christmas season hit, rankings began to improve. As a result of the strategy implemented, rankings for target terms moved from page 2/bottom of page 1 to top 5 positions in a month, and were on page 1 by February 2019. The page we optimised have then increased in CTR by 113% YoY and, due to the structured data we’ve included in our pages, we’ve been rewarded with a Google Quick Answer snippet. Overall, year on year clicks increased by 550% and rankings are stable for the keyword set. Even today, Vanquis is still in Google position 1 for the search 'credit cards for bad credit'.


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