Clarks Marina Case Study

The Client

Clark’s Marina is a 3rd generation Marina located on the St. Lawrence River in the 1000 Islands. They offer boat dockage, fuel, repairs and winter storage for watercraft of all sizes. 

After WDK launched their new website in 2019 the owners wanted to begin the transition to digital ads and timing their marketing messaging to coincide with seasonal trends. After the success of that first season, the owners returned again in 2020 to once again utilize WDK’s Marketing services however this time the focus would be on SEO and organic traffic. 

clarks marina website preview
seo campaign strategy session

The Plan

Identify which pages were already ranking well. Those pages were optimized first due to the fact that they were most likely to attract and convert at higher rates and be completed in a shorter time frame.

Next we performed an assessment on all competitors, private and municipally owned marinas and harbors within the target area. ID’d what content is working for them and what ranks well amongst organic results. Those insights had a considerable impact on the new content being created along with metrics like search volume.  

New, keyword-rich content was added strategically throughout the season at the most opportune moments. 

The Execution

In the chart below you can see Clark’s Marina’s 2019 Google Analytics Data in Orange. It begins as a flatline, this was due to the legacy website Clark’s Marina had in the past not having analytics installed which was the main reason for them contacting WDK. 

The new website, complete with analytics tracking launched in Spring 2019. The traffic data displays the typical seasonal fluctuations such as holidays and then by mid-summer once everyone has a spot in the marina reserved it drops off considerably. For the remainder of the year traffic gradually eases off until the season is over.

google analytics data table

In the first quarter of 2020, the client enrolled in WDK’s SEO program. In the first months of the campaign, considerable efforts were applied to technical aspects of the website’s back-end and optimizing the existing content of the site. This paid dividends and provided results almost immediately (2020 data is Blue).

We then added keyword researched content at strategic times throughout the boating season to target highly qualified leads and drive them to the site. WDK was able to keep organic traffic at consistent levels never before seen even at the best of times previously.

New Customers

During early SEO discussions with the client they mentioned the Quebec boating market was largely ignored in the 1000 Islands and they would like to attract them to Clark’s Marina. WDK took this suggestion and integrated it into the SEO plan as well as a parallel Google Ads campaign targeting Ottawa and Cornwall, Eastward. 

The results were extremely positive and the client was pleasantly surprised by the number of Quebecois flags on his new customers boats. The referral business and word-of-mouth within this target community has shown exciting growth.

side of boat looking out over water

The Results

The 2020 SEO Campaign was so successful it resulted in the client selling every single spot for the 2021 season as of February 2021. Typically to sell every slip it takes until Victoria Day or when the weather breaks 20°C consistently. This is the first time in the company’s 62 year history that every single spot has been reserved while still in the grip of February winter. 

WDK’s SEO efforts stay with your site and continue converting leads into customers long after we’re done. That ROI increases with every customer that converts well into the future.

Organic Leads


Organic Traffic


Marina Services

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