Fleet management, leasing, and technology provider Merchants Fleet came to Vital for a website redesign. Following the website re-launch, they entered into a digital marketing retainer program in order to drive more traffic through search engine optimization (SEO), generate more marketing- and sales-qualified online leads, and ultimately increase revenue.
The partnership between Merchants Fleet and Vital leverages the strengths of both organizations to support the company’s growth and continually improve the return on investment (ROI) of their digital marketing spend.
About Merchants Fleet
For over 60 years, Merchants Fleet has been providing highly customized fleet management and fleet leasing solutions to large businesses, mid-sized companies, governments, educational institutions, and more.
The initial goal of the 2019 Merchants Fleet website redesign was clear:
To regain lost traffic following a previous redesign, and build a solid foundation for ongoing digital marketing strategies.
Following Vital’s redesign of the website, Merchants Fleet transitioned to an ongoing retainer program designed to drive continual improvement of these key performance indicators (KPIs):
Metrics & Methodology
Vital benchmarked and began tracking KPIs for Merchants Fleet’s website and digital marketing initiatives in 2020. This case study is based on a comparison of 2020 benchmarks with 2022 data.
- Organic Traffic
- Online Leads
- Qualified New Business Leads
- Revenue from Online Leads
The previous Merchants Fleet website was poorly structured for SEO. Multiple service offerings were combined on broadly-focused pages, missing the opportunity to rank for more targeted keywords. In addition, their site was not optimized for early- or mid-stage conversions, so it failed to generate leads at scale, and many of the leads it did generate were low quality.
Since 2019, the commercial fleet industry has faced challenges including supply chain disruption, rising costs, and the growing need to shift from internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles to electric vehicles (EVs). Through strong leadership and a culture of innovation, Merchants Fleet has successfully navigated these industry shifts to become the fastest-growing fleet management company in North America — all while investing heavily in environment, social, and governance (ESG) strategies and other corporate sustainability initiatives.
As an industry leader in an evolving market, Merchants Fleet needed a digital marketing partner that could understand its business goals, provide holistic, cross-disciplinary expertise, and move quickly to help them outpace the competition.
Vital operates as an outsourced member of the Merchants Fleet marketing team, providing strategic, tactical, and creative support to solve challenges and meet the company’s goals. As a full-service website and digital marketing agency, Vital is able to help extend the Merchants teams’ capabilities, while providing data, analytics, and insights across traditional tactical silos.
Vital restructured the Merchants Fleet website to optimize it for organic search by creating new pages for individual service offerings. The site was brought up to best practice standards for technical SEO and conversion rate optimization (CRO). Additionally, Vital built a robust resource center to serve as a hub for content marketing and thought leadership.
Vital’s strategists and content marketing team work with Merchants Fleet on an ongoing basis to help produce blog posts, white papers, infographics, and other content in order to establish the company as a thought leader and drive organic traffic throughout the sales funnel.
Paid Search Advertising (PPC)
Vital has applied a unique approach to PPC for Merchants Fleet, leveraging advanced analytics to devise a strategy for both short- and long-term growth in traffic while dramatically lowering cost-per-click and cost-per-conversion compared to industry averages.
Virtual Event Marketing
When the Merchants Fleet team decided to make their second annual industry conference accessible virtually in 2021, Vital provided technical and marketing support to maximize the event’s reach. The Vital video studio crew was on hand to capture the event, and the digital marketing team took charge of promotion. With the success of that event, Vital and Merchants Fleet teamed up again for the 2022 Fleet Summit.
Video marketing provides a golden opportunity for Merchants Fleet to outshine its competitors, who are largely behind the curve in this important communication channel. Vital has helped the company capitalize on this opportunity with dozens of videos used for both internal and external marketing communications.
Human Resources & Corporate Communications
Vital has worked to support Merchants Fleet’s growth by overhauling the Careers section of their website, producing recruitment videos, and providing additional HR and corporate communications services.
Fleet Electrification Website and Digital Marketing
Merchants Fleet is a strong leader in fleet electrification and the leasing of electric vehicles (EVs) for commercial fleets. Vital helped curate and launch their EV site and continues to provide comprehensive SEO content strategy to build awareness and generate leads.
Since the start of Vital’s engagement with Merchants Fleet in 2019, baselined KPIs have seen significant upward shifts.
Leads per Year
Net New Web Leads
Increase in highly qualified job applicants
Increase in hiring
Increased brand awareness
The relationship between Merchants Fleet and Vital is an example of an agency partnership at its best. Vital has been able to provide strategic support as well as tactical execution, driven by the priorities of the Merchants Fleet marketing team. Vital’s initiatives have been instrumental in the company’s growth.
In 2022 Merchants Fleet announced its acquisition by Bain Capital, a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority (ADIA), and the Merchants Leadership team. They are poised for industry dominance in the era of fleet electrification and corporate sustainability. Vital is proud to play a role in this great business success story.
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