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Driving local search: from 0 to 440+ keywords on the first page of Google in 15 months

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About Pix-l Graphx:

Pix-l Graphx is an award-winning, full-service creative agency that specializes in growing brands through strategic research, SEO, digital advertising, and custom web development.

Business challenge: driving leads to a local LASIK clinic

A new Philadelphia-based clinic, Columbus LASIK Vision, came to Pix-l Graphx in February 2019 to build their online presence from the ground up. The agency needed to design a brand-new website and start its SEO optimization the following month. 

The Pix-l Graphx team decided to generate leads by ensuring the client's website is listed in the top five results for every local LASIK-related search. Their goal was to target four primary keyword groups:

  • General Terms: LASIK, LASIK center, LASIK surgery, LASIK surgeon, LASIK vision correction, LASIK price
  • Geo-Specific Terms: LASIK Philadelphia, LASIK Center Philadelphia, LASIK surgery Philadelphia, LASIK price Philadelphia
  • Hyper-local Terms: LASIK Abington PA, LASIK Selinsgrove PA, LASIK
  • Informational Keywords: How much LASIK cost?

The goal was truly ambitious - the brand-new site would have to compete at the top of the SERP with rivals like:

  • LASIK center aggregator websites
  • Strong local directories like Yelp
  • Well-established LASIK centers with a powerful web presence and thorough SEO strategy

“We had to drive leads quickly to generate capital for a new LASIK center, as sales are the lifeblood of any business. Before starting the SEO process, Columbus LASIK Vision had zero traffic and leads from its new web presence. We knew that with the right efforts, we would get there slowly. Existing websites had many advantages, and competing with them in a short period was a real challenge,” explains Peeyush Dubey, SEO consultant at Pix-l Graphx.

Solution: structured content, optimization, technical SEO

Initial Prep

As a first step, Peeyush and the team needed to benchmark their client and assess their competitors’ strengths. He used Semrush’s Organic Research tool to determine the core competitor sites and their ranking keywords, top-performing pages, and organic traffic. This helped him uncover the competition’s tactics and put together the content strategy accordingly.

A competitor’s Organic Research report

Organic research trends can be limiting in local SEO campaigns, though. For brick and mortar businesses, more than 50% of the magic happens through local search. The Organic Research tool gave Pix-l Graphx insight into how competitors performed over local drivers like Google Maps, Yelp, and Facebook.

A competitor’s Organic Positions report

Identifying Keywords

The team at Pix-l Graphx collected statistics from competing pages, evaluated Columbus LASIK Vision’s unique offerings, brainstormed, and used the Semrush Keyword Overview tool to finalize the first keyword list draft. The tool also helped identify related keywords and variations to bolster each landing page.

Additionally, the Keyword Magic Tool helped zero in on the most valuable keywords. 

“The Keyword Magic Tool is perfect for large-scale keyword research since it organizes and filters results by the strongest keywords,” Peeyush adds. 

Next, Pix-l Graphx grouped keywords to identify top landing pages for the new site, create strong navigation elements, and build an SEO-friendly website structure.

Improving Off-Site Visibility

For local businesses, off-site visibility on such directories as Yelp, Google Maps, and Facebook is imperative. To find all possible off-site listings for their client, Pix-l Graphx searched competitor listings in the Backlink Gap tool. The results are ordered by authority score so the team easily identified prime local directories with high-yield traffic and referral potential.

Content Creation

Pix-l Graphx was tasked with ranking the pages for multiple keywords and center locations. The team was able to use location-specific terms to yield multiple search rankings from one landing page: 

LASIK [city name]
LASIK center [city name]
LASIK surgery [city name]
Traditional LASIK [city name]
Custom LASIK [city name]
Wavefront LASIK [city name]
PRK procedure [city name]
LASIK cost [city name]
LASIK financing [city name]
LASIK procedure [city name]
LASIK reviews [city name]

With the help of Semrush’s SEO Writing Assistant tool, the Pix-l team built SEO-friendly content for geo-specific pages, which performed well after the launch. The tool gave actionable SEO recommendations like related keywords, the copy’s optimal length and readability, tone of voice, originality, and more.

“Along with the website page content, the tool also helped us optimize results for the Google My Business description,” Peeyush says. 

Eye Exam

Like a thorough eye exam, Pix-l Graphx diagnosed the LASIK Center’s site health with the Semush Site Audit. “This tool identifies errors and warning data on each page,” Peeyush explains. “It helped us find and fix critical errors in page-level SEO and crawlability, improve overall website health, and further boost keyword rankings.” 

By correcting possible technical errors, the team kept the health score above 90%.


444 keywords ranking on the first page of Google 15 months after site launch
With consistent efforts, Columbus LASIK Vision holds the top 3 positions on SERPs for 179 keywords and a total of 444 keywords on the first page of Google - that’s 62% of the project’s keyword base.

300+ monthly leads
Consultation bookings and patient sign-ups are consistently growing month by month. The Google My Business listings for the website perform well across its four locations. Each listing now generates 150+ direct calls every quarter, collectively creating 200 leads per month. The website’s contact form generates another 100+ leads per month.

The site saw 100% growth in Organic Impressions over the previous 6 months.

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