How We Helped McCallum Theatre Take Control of the SERP

May 24, 2023

How We Helped McCallum Theatre Take Control of the SERP

Picture it: An audience member searches for tickets to your organization’s concert or production but can't find your official site page easily on the Search Engine Results Page (SERP).

This, unfortunately, is common for non-profit organizations. So, what can you do to ensure your organization outranks the competition? Implement a holistic search engine optimization (SEO) strategy!

Just ask McCallum Theatre, a non-profit performing arts organization in Palm Desert, CA, who faced a similar challenge despite leveraging social media and Google advertising efforts to promote their upcoming season programming. We identified the missing piece of their marketing puzzle: a robust search engine optimization (SEO) strategy.

Stats at a Glance

23-05 Case Study McCallum - stats at a glance

Using SEO to Increase Visibility on the SERP

Think about your website as your building. Search engines are the path to your front door, so it’s essential to have a solid digital strategy that will bring audiences knocking. Many arts organizations use search engine marketing (SEM) to appear in the paid ads section at the top of the SERP. However, SEO is often the most forgotten strategy that helps provide strong support for your organization’s SERP performance beyond the paid ads section.

Organizations can change how search engines read and understand their website by targeting specific keywords on landing pages and making small but powerful optimizations to landing pages and site structure. These optimizations can improve the quantity and quality of organic search traffic being driven to your website, ultimately driving more revenue.

Optimizing Tag Design

We took a strategic approach to increase the relevance of McCallum Theatre’s pages on the SERP.

Full-Site Evaluation: We began by completing a full SEO evaluation of their site. This deep-dive website analysis helped us gain a more thorough understanding of McCallum Theatre’s site structure so we could identify SEO opportunities that can affect organic search performance:

Title tags and meta descriptions that were too long or duplicated

Schema Structured Data Usage

Image Tags

Link Strategy

Sitemap Implementation

Robot.txt Blocking

We took our learnings from this analysis and developed a pre-season launch tag design to improve the relevance of McCallum Theatre’s pages and increase the amount of organic search traffic potential their Event Detail pages could receive during their upcoming season. We uploaded these optimized tags to the McCallum Theatre site, allowing their team to focus their efforts on everything else pertaining to their season launch.

Keyword Research: We then conducted keyword research about McCallum Theatre and its season line-up. We started by exploring the competition and volume data of branded keywords (keywords that included “mccallum theatre”) and the names of performers and shows, as well as non-branded keywords (keywords that are relevant to McCallum Theatre’s location like “palm desert” and the type of programming they present). We selected relevant branded and non-branded keywords that had the keyword sweet spot of high search volume and low competition to design tags. Finding this sweet spot makes it easy for both search engines and users to see the relevance of McCallum Theatre’s pages to their top branded and non-branded search queries.

Optimize Title Tags: Title Tags are a main factor search engines consider when ranking pages on the SERP. In addition to using both branded and non-branded keywords, we included “official site” language (ex: “official ticket source”, “official site”, etc.) to give search engines more context, helping them to understand that McCallum Theatre’s pages were the most relevant for users searching for “mccallum theater tickets.”

23-05 Case Study McCallum - SERP screesnhot

Optimize Meta Descriptions: We also included “official site” language in the meta descriptions of show landing pages. While meta descriptions do not help with ranking, they are instrumental in affecting clickthrough rate (CTR). The “official site” language in the meta descriptions acted as an additional authority indicator for users searching for “mccallum theatre tickets”, guiding them toward McCallum Theater’s pages.

The Result: Taking Control of the SERP

This two-pronged approach maximized McCallum Theatre’s page visibility on the SERP throughout their 2022-2023 season and helped their pages take over the SERP. In fact, the number of users who found McCallum Theatre’s Season Landing page and Event Detail pages directly from an organic search increased significantly after our tag design was implemented on McCallum Theatre’s site.

Users Who Found McCallum Theatre's Pages via Organic Search

23-05 Case Study McCallum - users via organic search

Ready to appear on the SERP with more authority, take control of your site visibility, and maximize organic search traffic to your site? Get in touch with us to get a tailored SEO strategy for your organization.

Search Engine Optimization


Shannon Bunting

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