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What are your SaaS company's current growth marketing challenges and wins?

February 2024

How Expensify's Product Signups Increased 50% With A Comprehensive SEO, Content, and Lead Generation Strategy

Find out how we helped Expensify, a leading expense management platform, grow their traffic and product signups in just six months.

Hand holding phone taking a picture of a receipt on a table with a laptop on it
Services

Strategy
Search Engine Optimization 
Content Marketing
Lead Generation
Data & Analytics

6 Month Results
50%

Increase in

product signups
from organic traffic

 
175%

Increase in

keywords ranking
in positions 1-3

 
293%

Increase in
keywords on
the first page

 
260%

To monthly
traffic goal

Building Off Product-Led Growth

 

Imagine a world where expense reports process themselves and managing company spending is as easy as a few clicks. Sounds like a finance manager's dream, right? That's the world Expensify creates. 

 Expensify had seen tremendous success from innovative PLG tactics, but now it was time to invest in marketing channels (namely search engine optimization) to reach the next level of growth. 

With goals to dominate search engine rankings for five key business terms and revamp their content strategy to resonate with their tech-forward audience, Expensify needed a marketing ally. They weren't just looking for tweaks — they wanted transformation. And that’s where our team at First Page Strategy shines. 

Challenge

 

Despite being a leader in their field, Expensify faced complex SEO and content challenges. 

The primary hurdle? Boosting their visibility in search engine rankings, specifically targeting five key business terms that were essential to their core services. They needed an SEO partner who wouldn't just follow the trends but lead the charge in proactive, results-driven SEO tactics. 

Additionally, their content ecosystem needed a revamp. With plans to move their blog from WordPress to Squarespace, Expensify aimed for a seamless integration that would make content management effortless and more effective.

But perhaps the most unique challenge was aligning all these efforts with their distinct work culture. As a tech-forward, asynchronous company, Expensify sought a marketing partner who could work in tandem with them — understand their language, communicate effectively on Slack, and translate their brand ethos into every piece of content.

In short, Expensify needed more than just a service provider. They needed a collaborator who could understand their vision and turn it into a reality. We rose to the occasion and charted a course through these multifaceted challenges. 

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Strategy

 

Facing Expensify's intricate web of challenges head-on, we rolled up our sleeves and dove into their Revenue Acceleration Map (RAM) — a custom strategy designed to achieve (and often surpass) our clients’ goals. In this case, the goals were higher organic traffic, increased app signups, and improved search rankings.

The RAM helps us identify and prioritize opportunities, ensuring we craft the most timely, effective strategy for each client. Expensify’s RAM included:

 

Technical SEO Audit

We kicked off with an in-depth technical SEO audit. The goal was to ensure best practices and optimization across all of Expensify's subdomains. This critical step was not just about fixing errors; it was about laying a strong foundation for future SEO success. At the end of this process, we created a “report card” for Expensify with scores for each key element of technical SEO, as well as a prioritized list of fixes based on impact and a timeline for getting the fixes implemented. 


Content Strategy Overhaul

Next was the content audit and strategy development phase. The migration of Expensify’s blog from WordPress to Squarespace was no mere transfer — it involved a meticulous selection of content to be kept, optimized, or rewritten.

Our content and SEO experts reviewed all existing content to identify the pieces with value, whether that was because they had incoming links, were ranking well, or had the potential to capture important keywords if better optimized. From there, we also identified which content was duplicative in search intent, low value, or outdated, and then we determined the best next steps to either make that content valuable again or redirect it somewhere more appropriate. 

Beyond tweaks to existing content, we saw a need for creating evergreen content to drive not just traffic, but also valuable engagement. We identified important gaps in Expensify’s content strategy to stand out from competitors and better speak to their ideal target audience. The final result was a content strategy full of specific ideas and tactics to implement over the next year. 


Targeted Keyword Optimization

The keyword optimization project was a deep dive into Expensify’s five core keywords. We completed a thorough competitor analysis, backlink research, and SERP analysis to see what kind of content was currently ranking. Plus, we reviewed Expensify’s current pages for ways they could be better optimized.

Then, we crafted SEO content briefs for each keyword to effectively make Expensify’s content the no-brainer for ranking #1. These content briefs provided guidance to writers, identifying essential keywords to use, highlighting appropriate optimization tactics, and suggesting ways the content could be better than what was currently ranking on Google.


Backlink Audit and Strategic Development

Analyzing and revamping Expensify’s backlink profile was next. FPS conducted a thorough audit, comparing Expensify’s standing with six competitors. The outcome? A tailored set of recommendations for natural link building that aligned with Expensify’s existing PR and content efforts.

Inbound Growth Marketing Strategy

Understanding that content is king but conversion is queen, we immersed ourselves in Expensify's goals, target audience, product, and historical data to built a comprehensive inbound growth marketing strategy. The aim was to effectively transform content into leads and product signups.

The project included analyzing Expensify’s customer data and competitor messaging, and then creating new buyer personas and funnel stages based on those insights. We also outlined marketing and PLG tactics to better speak to each persona at each stage of the funnel and updated CTAs across the site to correspond to each stage's goal and move prospects through the funnel more efficiently.

Last but not least, we defined a lead scoring model based on the attributes that indicate a lead is most likely to convert to help the Expensify team better prioritize which prospects to reach out to. 

"We’ve seen each keyword make leaps and bounds up the ranking positions, with a couple reaching position number one in less than a year. We owe this to the comprehensive SEO strategy FPS has helped us implement.

From reviving our blog to creating an entirely new resource center to conducting both a technical and content audit to creating a blueprint for our internal team to craft SEO content, the FPS team’s efforts and diligence around our SEO strategy from every angle has yielded truly incredible results thus far."

Lindsay Revill

Head of Marketing

Expensify Logo

Execution

 

Transforming a plan into action is where the real magic happens. With the RAM as our north star, we embarked on a journey with Expensify to turn their goals into reality. 

 

Resource Center Creation

We developed a resource center filled with evergreen content designed to engage users at various stages of the funnel, a feature previously missing in Expensify's arsenal. This new hub is the perfect home for unique content, including how-to guides, calculators and tools, white papers, educational videos, webinars, infographics, podcasts, and case studies. 


Blog Migration and Optimization

The migration of Expensify’s blog to Squarespace was not just a transfer, but a transformation. It involved technical cleanup, content rewrites, and optimization, ensuring the content was up-to-date, relevant, and free from redundancies.

Conversion Tracking Implementation

Accurate analytics and data setup is crucial to making well-informed decisions. For Expensify, we implemented robust conversion tracking, coinciding with the move to GA4. This allowed for precise tracking of product signups and the identification of the most effective marketing channels and content impacting ROI.


Collaboration with PR Team

We worked closely with Expensify’s PR team to drive mentions, links, and partnerships, especially around campaign launches and new features, to bolster organic traffic and enhance brand presence.


Optimizing Key Landing Pages

Rewriting and optimizing key landing pages was a significant part of the strategy. This involved a nuanced use of keywords, content restructuring to meet search intent, and adding insightful content to address user queries effectively.


CTA Customization and Testing

We updated and tested various CTAs across the site, aligning them with newly developed personas and funnel stages, ensuring offers were relevant and compelling.

Regular Content Calendars and SEO Briefs

Establishing a rhythm in content creation, we developed regular content calendars and comprehensive SEO briefs. The content was tailored to the new buyer personas and keyword opportunities across all funnel stages.

SEO Best Practices for Expensify’s Team

Recognizing the talent within Expensify’s team, we also created SEO best practices checklists and editorial guidelines. This empowered the internal team to produce content that was not only engaging, but also strategically aligned with SEO goals.

Results

 

Our partnership with Expensify not only achieved the goals we set together but surpassed them — all in less than six months.

  • Product signups from organic traffic increased 50%. This was a direct reflection of the content and SEO tactics driving not just traffic but valuable conversions.
  • The revamping and migration of Expensify's blog bore fruit, achieving an impressive 260% of their monthly traffic goal. This wasn’t just an increase in numbers; it was a surge in relevant, engaged traffic.
  • The backlink strategy paid off, with Expensify exceeding its stretch goal in referring domains by 114%. This was not just about quantity — each link added value and authority to Expensify’s site.
  • By the end of 2023, the company reached 123% of its keyword ranking goal. This achievement included four of the five core keywords climbing to the first page, with two securing the coveted #1 spot.
  • Expensify experienced substantial growth in keyword rankings, with a 175% increase in keywords in positions 1-3 and a staggering 293% growth in first-page keywords. The total keyword count skyrocketed by 96%.
  • Targeted efforts for the keyword "expense management" propelled Expensify to outrank major industry players, achieving the #1 ranking. This was a testament to our fine-tuned content and SEO strategy.

Even though our journey with Expensify is just beginning, we hit the ground running and surpassed the ambitious initial goals we set together. This partnership is an illustration of how flexibility, strategic innovation, and shared commitment can drive extraordinary results. 

Lindsey Revill, Head of Marketing at Expensify, says, "Working with the FPS team feels like an extension of our own internal team. They're quick to offer advice, answer our team’s questions, and keep our projects on track, showcasing their dedication and expertise in steering our SEO and digital marketing efforts towards remarkable success."

So, what’s next for Expensify? If our track record with them is any indicator, more signups, more rankings, and more growth. 

Ready to get growing?