MoneySupermarket Group’s Organic Search Strategy is Perfect

Lorna Rose Gill Posted by Lorna Rose Gill

As everyone rushes to put their money safely away before the end of the financial year, we uncover an effective tactic that’s defining the success of MoneySupermarket’s organic share of voice.

For some, March represents the end of the winter gloom and the arrival of warmer weather and sun – at last! But if you work in the banking sector, this time of year is dominated by a scramble for savings and ISAs as the end of the financial year looms and consumers think about the best way to maximise their savings in the year ahead.

With so much at stake during this single month, let’s find out which financial institutions got it right last year, and what they can learn from it.

Analysing the trends across 20 keywords related to savings and ISAs, but excluding any brand-related keywords, we examined the UK’s top performers in the financial space, including money advice websites and financial services aggregators to see who performed best in organic search.

It revealed a very clever strategy by the MoneySupermarket Group indeed.

Martin Lewis: Organic Search Champ

[lightbox rel=”group1″ width=”860″ href=”” title=”Comparison sites SOV, Adthena data” src=””][/lightbox]
Comparison sites SOV, Adthena data

Money Saving Expert site, which was acquired by second-place MoneySupermarket in 2012, performed best throughout the year in terms of organic search.

This is actually rather unsurprising if you consider the value of the page’s content: rather than a simple push for sales, Money Saving Expert is a free site dedicated to providing important advice and helpful information on the full range of available financial services.

MoneySupermarket is the financial comparison engine arm of the company, allowing consumers to compare the best deals on everything from insurance, to loans, mortgages, credits cards and of course, savings. It doesn’t feature as much editorial content, making the company’s acquisition of Money Saving Expert a very intelligent one.

While looking into the top organic performance of the sites, we uncovered a clear strategic move used by the two sites to ensure they remained in the lead for organic search throughout the year.

Money Saving Expert obtained its greatest organic share of voice (SOV) between the end of December 2013 and the end of March 2014, dominating approximately 70% of the organic search market compared to its usual 50%.

Although not overtaking its sister site at any point, MoneySupermarket’s SOV increased steadily while Money Saving Expert’s SOV was on the decrease. The opposite occurred when Money Saving Expert’s share started to climb again, resulting in an inverted trend graph.

[lightbox rel=”group1″ width=”860″ href=”” title=”Banking keywords traffic, Adthena data” src=””][/lightbox]
Banking keywords traffic, Adthena data

The Keywords

Of the top keywords these companies were bidding on, the term savings accounts accounted for more than half of all relevant organic traffic, excluding brand keywords, maintaining a massive lead over other terms like high interest savings and compare savings accounts.

For the most part, the organic traffic trends remained fairly flat, although savings accounts did begin to rise again in December leading to double the traffic the term saw in the year’s first month, reaching its peak in August.

The trend begins to sink again near the end of the year, in the leadup to the holiday shopping splurge when fewer people are likely to be looking for the best deal on savings account – more likely looking to find out how to save on their Christmas shopping.

This graph almost exactly replicates MoneySupermarket’s trend, demonstrating that maybe, this was the lead term the comparison site was ranking for, while in the lead up to Christmas, we would probably find terms related to discounts and retail peaked if we had included them in this study.

The Best of the Rest

When comparing share of voice trends to their biggest competitors in the finance space, it’s clear MoneySupermarket Group’s strategy is keeping it way out front of its competitors. Go Compare, Compare The Market and all sit right at the bottom of the graph, rarely rising above 5% market share.

The luxury of owning two brands that can work in this tag team style certainly shines through and although it may not be possible to achieve such solid results, it would be worth considering teaming up with a well-aligned secondary brand to try and take on MoneySupermarket and Money Saving Expert.

Adthena’s competitive intelligence for search tools allow you to analyse much more than just the keywords you know you’re bidding on and ranking for, but can also expose vital insights into how your competitors are performing too.

With the ability to run head-to-head analyses with up to three competitors, discover which keywords you’re missing out on and much more, it’s the most in-depth organic and sponsored search tools available on the market.

(Main image credit: Nottsexminer/flickr)

About the author

Lorna Rose Gill
Lorna Rose Gill
Lorna is responsible for acquisition marketing at Adthena, communicating their award-winning product and generating demand. She has developed her career in fast-paced, start-up environments, including two tech track 100 companies. She is curious and passionate and likes to find stories in data and technology.