Shark Anupam Mittal is the KING of online matrimony!
But what’s his SEO scorecard?
Shaadi.com gets 750K users every month from Google! On top of that, they have scaled Shaadi.com to a user base of 35M and a market share of 25-30%!
Let's steal this shark's SEO strategy to attract new users to your startup's website!
What is Shaadi.com? And, why do they need SEO?
Shaadi.com is an Indian Matrimony website founded by Shark Tank India's Anupam Mittal. Anupam founded this website way back in 1996 when the internet was an unknown concept in India. So, Shaadi's early success was all thanks to NRI Indians staying offshore.
But a decade since then, India quickly became internet-ready and India's famous wedding market came online. Today, Shaadi.com is India's number 1 matchmaking website with 35M active users.
Its brand recall and marketing are so strong that 85% of traffic directly arrives on its website. That's a total of 13.7M visitors every month!
Meaning people directly search for "shaadi.com" on their browsers. So, it's safe to assume that a better part of India knows about this startup. But, what about the rest?
How do they manage to reach new users? Well, turns out, that their second-highest source of traffic is SEARCH. This means they need SEO to get new users. So let's explore their SEO strategy!
How does Shaadi.com get users from Google?
Apart from the homepage and the registration page, Shaadi.com gets most of its traffic from its main 2 subfolders. Subfolders are basically a set of similar pages, created to typically targe the same search intent.
2 main subfolders:
- Matrimony ➝ shaadi.com/matrimony
- Horoscope Compatibility ➝ shaadi.com/horoscope-compatibility
Together these 2 subfolders bring 130K visitors to Shaadi.com per month. Let's understand their structure and why they do so well in detail.
1. Matrimony Pages
The first set of pages basically targets users that are directly searching for matrimony websites on Google. So, the target keywords, in this case, include direct terms like:
Now, this "matrimony" subfolder has over ~4300 unique pages. So, how did Shaadi.com figure out what pages to create under this specific subfolder? Well, there is a simple strategy for buildd-ing a winning subfolder.
A) Narrow down all unique keywords applicable to the category
We know that Shaadi.com specifically caters to the Indian audience, that's over a billion people and increasing. The sheer volume of the target audience might seem like a positive point in favour of the startup, but this user base is extremely complex. Especially, when it comes to weddings.
Indians operate in tight-knit communities based on their religion, caste, state and more such specific constructs. So, they tend to marry within those communities. Shaadi.com clearly understands this, so they have created all their pages targeting these specific communities.
But, how do we start listing such communities and narrow down the keywords? Well, the key to building a proper subfolder and URL structure is categorization. Shaadi.com categorizes keywords both based on geography and religion.
So, we get keywords based on:
- Religion — Hindu Matrimony, Muslim Matrimony, etc
- Communities — Brahmin Matrimony, Maratha Matrimony, etc
- States — Bihar Matrimony, Kerala Matrimony, etc
- Cities — Mumbai Matrimony, Bangalore Matrimony, etc
- Country (NRI keywords) — US NRI Matrimony, Saudi Arabia NRI Matrimony, etc
Now, that they have created all the obvious categories and listed down all possible keywords under these categories, they move on to see what users are actually searching for.
This is important because ultimately, your target page should closely match your the query.
After a quick search, you can see terms like "brides profile", "grooms profile", crop up. So, Shaadi.com expands its current keywords to include these specific terms.
- Marathi Brides
- Hindu Grooms
- USA NRI Brides
Altogether, we get all the unique keywords to target.
B) Create a unique page for each unique keyword
Once we have the target keywords ready, the next step is to create these pages. Now, Shaadi.com's pages are all programmatically generated. It already has a user-generated database of brides and grooms with specific info about their religion, state, caste, country, etc.
To generate these pages, Shaadi.com simply applies filters to only include the profiles that are applicable to a given case, for example: "USA nri brides", will only list brides who currently reside in the US and have an NRI status.
All these pages are listed under the subfolder "matrimony".
C) Internally link all these unique pages
Now, that all these pages are generated, it's important to internally link them. Internal linking basically means adding a link from one page of the website to another. So, the Indian Matrimony page will contain internal links to all the corresponding pages in the sidebar.
The benefit of doing this is simple. If one of these pages does very well, for example, the "indian matrimony page". Then all the other pages that are internally linked from this page will also do well.
So, essentially, the authority of the main page passes on to the pages it links to. That means proper internal linking will cause all pages in the subfolder to start doing well eventually.
D) Focus on on-page SEO
Finally, when creating these pages it's important to focus on on-page SEO elements. That means embedding the target keyword in key HTML elements.
Let's say our target keyword is "Indian Matrimony". Then, HTML elements like:
- URL slug
- Image alt text
should all contain the keyword.
What we finally get is e-commerce style webpages that lists brides and grooms with appropriate CTA's like - "click to chat", "I'm interested" that help convert these visitors into registered members of Shaadi.com.
2. Horoscope Compatibility Pages
Another entry point for Shaadi.com is its Horoscope compatibility pages. These pages are created following a similar pattern as the matrimony pages.
The logic behind creating these pages is simple. Horoscope compatibility is a key step when it comes to matchmaking in India. So, Shaadi.com's target audience, that is brides, grooms and their families would be searching for these queries.
So, Shaadi.com created a set of such horoscope compatibility pages targeting different religions.
The Results and Key Takeaways
Shaadi.com's SEO numbers look amazing:
- Monthly Organic Traffic = 747K
- Keywords = 27.7K
- Backlinks = 682K
- DR = 71
- Referring Domain = 3.9K
The matrimony and horoscope pages account for ~20% of this traffic!
And, here are the takeaways for us:
- Lay out a proper SEO strategy before you jump into building your website.
- Start by doing keyword research. Make sure to create proper categories and use permutations & combinations to find out all the unique terms you can target. This will help you target an entire scope of keywords, which greatly helps in building topical authority.
- Next, work on on-page SEO. The best way to approach this is by creating a base template and automatically populating the keywords where ever applicable.
- Finally, focus on internally linking your pages. This will help search engines quickly index these pages.