How we boosted organic EV traffic for Auto Trader by 12x

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Auto Trader is the UK’s largest digital automotive marketplace. It’s the go-to destination for car buyers and has been for the past 40 years. Each month its digital platforms attract 67.9 million visits, accounting for more than 75% of all time spent on automotive classified sites.

Working with Reddico on this campaign has been a delight and the results speak for themselves.

Adam Whittles, Head of SEO & Content Marketing, Auto Trader

The brief

With EVs now accounting for 14.8% of new car sales and rising, Auto Trader wanted to grow its organic presence in the sector. The company only held a 1.86% share of voice for the top 200 keywords, so their team asked us to develop an online content and digital PR campaign that would improve the organic performance and authority of their electric cars subfolder.

What we did

Using a keyword target list provided by the client we were able to see the top 50 competitors, by organic share of voice, and therefore analyse the backlink profile for the competitors outranking us.

The competitor sites were large, as is Auto Trader, so the focus was on the electric cars subfolder path and identifying gaps in their existing backlink profile. The gaps identified were:

  • Links from trusted/high-authority domains (including .gov/.edu).

  • Links from eco-friendly/sustainability-focused sites.

  • Quantity of links into the electric cars subfolder path (~350 ref domains required).

  • A general lack of EV content pieces within Auto Trader’s electric cars subfolder.

We used this information, combined with our content and design expertise to develop six assets we were confident would be well received by webmasters.

The content assets were published under the /cars/electric/ subfolder, helping to strengthen the parent and child pages through their position in the site structure and internal linking. 

We researched a sample of the target domains we wanted placements from to see what content they linked to and share across social platforms.

Our team then sent outreach to suitable websites to secure valuable placements and backlinks helping improve the authority of the folder as a whole. This was executed using our in-house tech KRANG which enables us to deliver well-targeted, fresh, personalised outreach at scale.

Explore the content assets:

A map of charging points across the UK and Ireland

The next decade of electric cars

Understanding the sustainability of electric cars

How far can you go on a single charge?

What drivers with disabilities need to know about electric cars

An educational guide on the cost of owning an EV

The results

The new content has attracted 12x more annual organic traffic to Auto Trader’s electric cars subfolder, equating to an additional 1.2 million annual visits* and Auto Trader now has the third highest share of voice for the top 200 EV keywords at 7.8%.

We secured 362 unique placements and backlinks from referring domains, including automotive sites such as Octopus Electric Vehicles and AutoGlass Ireland, plus high-authority domains, including 28x .gov links and 19x university links, helping to strengthen the authority of the EV subfolder /cars/electric/.

Additionally, while Auto Trader only ranked in the top 10 for 45 non-branded EV keywords in April 2021, by September 2022 this increased to 932.

Our work with Auto Trader also took the prize for Organic Search at the Drum Awards for Digital Industries 2023.

*Source: Semrush

12x Organic traffic
362 Placements and backlinks
+932 Top 10 EV keywords
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Working with Reddico on this campaign has been a delight and the results speak for themselves. It’s rare that an agency manages to understand our business so quickly and Reddico did exactly that. Their creative ideas and execution have enabled us to outperform many of the established players in the EV space. Adam Whittles, Head of SEO & Content Marketing, Auto Trader
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