There are over 200 factors that Google uses to rank websites with its algorithm. In this blog post, I am going to be discussing 15 ways that Netflix can improve its website organically to compete with the quarter of a million dollar google ad spend that Disney+ has been using to gain market share from Netflix. It is my hope that you will learn how to improve your seo through this case study. If you are a brand or business owner, read this case study to get inspiration for your digital marketing. Please note that not all of these tactics will work for every company. However, there are 15 tactics explored here so I am sure that there will be something that you can apply. In addition, my research shows that only 44% of businesses have an SEO strategy so you have a 56% chance of really benefiting from this blog post.
Consider this your case study to give you inspiration for your brand.
Please take notes, and take this seriously. If you are another digital marketer or a hater, I welcome your feedback in the comments. I would love to hear your perspective on this fascinating case. Finally, I have also to disclose that I am a huge Netflix fan. My boyfriend had to purchase Disney+ for me to even entertain it. LOL. So here we go:
Cultural Context for This SEO Case Study:
If you look at the mainstream media, they all have opinions about what you should eat, watch, wear, and more. In addition, the media has ideas about what companies are winners and losers. It appears to me that Netflix is taking a beating to its image, bottom line, and overall perception from the public and employees. If you are to believe the media, Netflix is laying off tons of employees, has spent all of its money on content, and is running on fumes. If you let the media tell you and some misguided individuals they will argue that DisneyPlus has superior content.
However, I think that Netflix’s content is superior to Disney’s.
Organically, you can click and see Netflix is king. It does not matter how many shows you have. People want to see what Netflix can show them that is new. Netflix the brand is more popular than any show on Netflix.
They are ranking for a total of 6,284,838 keywords with a total search volume of 1.04B. Organically, Netflix is getting a total of 22.5M Clicks from Google. DisneyPlus is ranking for a total of 676,831 keywords with a total search volume of 206M with a total of 4.2M organic search volume clicks.
The reason why Disney appears to be winning this streaming war is that they have mastered branding and marketing. Disney also owns a ton of media. Of course, Disney is a much older company with more resources with annual revenue of 130+ Billion Dollars. However, Disney Plus is contributing less than 5% of all Disney’s annual revenue. My goal in this analysis is to show you how your brand can compete in a crowded marketplace.
I have spent the past couple of months analyzing Disney’s and Netflix’s Organic presence and branding. I have a few suggestions on how Netflix can turn the tide of the public perception that Disney is manufacturing Netflix with the press outlets that it owns. Did you know that Disney owns ABC, ESPN, FX, and more?
Netflix: $29.698B Annual Revenue
Disney: The Walt Disney Company announced revenue of 67.4 billion U.S. dollars in 2021
Netflix Google Ads monthly spend: $45K
Disney Google Ads monthly spend: $318K
The bottom line is that Netflix is spending approximately 8 times less money in Google Ad spend than Disney plus on ads, and is ranking for approximately 8 times fewer keywords that are generating more than 8 times less amount of traffic.
How to Improve Your SEO
Netflix Should double down on SEO and Google Ads as follows:
- Use the cultural impact and brand in the text of the Google Ads. When I surveyed the text from Netflix’s Google Ads, I saw no mention of Netflix and Chill. I saw no mention of specific shows such as Bridgerton, Stranger Things, Squid Game, and more. Netflix has been able to create content that appeals to a broad swath of society. Not just the fairytale, Marvel, and Star Wars fans of the world. Netflix has something for everyone. This needs to be emphasized ad nauseam in Google Ads. This is cultural capital that can drive conversions. I know entertaining people before they get to the site is a good thing, and every chuckle will increase the chances of a click, and more importantly a new or retained subscription. The Google Ad Titles and descriptions should mention this.
- Dear Reader, did you know that Netflix has a blog called Tulum? I know I sure did not know this until I started to do research for this specific blog. I am flabbergasted that I could not find the blog via all of my exhaustive searches on the phrases: What to Watch on Netflix. This blog is not even called a blog, it’s called Tulum. I understand that many people got laid off from this department, however, I had no ideathat Netflix has recommendations outside of the automated ones that seem to pop up on my screen. The Blog is NOT listed as a link in the Header of Netflix as you are browsing what to watch, and it is not in the footer either. This should be changed.
- Social Sharing: All Blog Content and Highly searched content on Netflix needs to be shared on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest. I just checked the latest blog post on Tulum (as of the writing of this draft) and it had absolutely no social shares just like this other blog post that published January 10, 2019
- Do Keyword Research for your brand: When I reviewed all of the branded terms that Netflix is being searched for I found a total of over 2 million keywords and over 300,000 questions. When I looked to see how many keywords Netflix’s website was ranking for I saw a total of 6 Million Keywords of which, Netflix is only ranking for a total of 310,389 branded keywords. This is only 15% of the Goodwill on the internet that is looking for Netflix directly. Let’s put this into perspective. Amazon is ranking for a total of Total Keywords: 2,780,457 that contain Amazon. There are a total of 7,374,335 phrases that contain amazon online that people are searching for and this is 46% visibility that they have. Netflix can improve if it would invest in the marketing of the content that they already have.
- Keyword Research for every single show (product/service). When I searched Netflix I found that 2.1 phrases have Netflix in them that people are searching for.
- Use Metrics to drive marketing and budgetary decisions, not just views, but look at how people are searching over time. Use Google Trendss to see that
- Invest in the marketing of the content that you already have. When shows are trending or go viral, do a deep dive analysis of all of the possible keywords and optimize the heck out of Netflix and Tudlum to draw that traffic to your site.
- Optimize Netflix for Trending Topics. I recently watched a documentary on Netflix about Ben Crump. That documentary was terrific. I thoroughly enjoyed it. I think Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and The Civil Rights movement are very popular topics that people want to learn more about.
- Start an Affiliate program or utilize Gamification to encourage social shares: You can get fans to promote their favorite shows, even more, when they can earn perks from sharing online.
- Stop Logging into Netflix.com when you are doing your marketing at Netflix. Google has a habit of skewing the results to what you want to see. Log Out of Netflix and then check your rankings, and make sure you utilize a fine-toothed comb to examine your keyword rankings. When I did this with one of my favorite shows on Netflix: The Umbrella Academy I found that Thrillist was ranking #1 for “the Umbrella Academy”. However, when I manually searched I found that all I got were Netflix results.
- Boost engagement by studying your competition. Amazon Prime has a phenomenal feature that allows the user to read about the cast, and see pictures while the movie is playing.
- Copy Amazon: Netflix’s interface is too clean. I have had to google Netflix’s Press Room as I am researching for this article to even realize that Netflix had a newsroom. The only thing that is “news” is the top 10 TV Shows and Top 10 Movies that I check daily. When I say that Netflix’s interface is too clean and that Netflix needs to take a page out of Amazon’s book is because too much juicy content is hidden online. Amazon makes more money than Disney and Netflix combined. It has created its holiday and has an extremely cluttered interface, but you can find everything that you need online, and its bottom line shows it. Netflix needs to add links to its blogs, media room, and anywhere that it is talking about new content in a place where people who are looking for ideas of what to watch can get inspiration about what to binge next.
- Interlinking: Make sure that after people binge-watch every series that has 4 or more seasons that you show them links to the corresponding blog content.
- Strategic Relationships and Acquisitions: Haters are truly going to hate, and it is no different when it comes to Fortune 500 companies. Netflix is at a disadvantage when it comes to Disney’s book of assets with high domain authority. Disney owns ESPN, and National Geographic (which has a ton of links to Disneyplus.com), Netflix needs to think of itself as a media company versus a streaming company. Creating strategic relationships with media that are independent is the key. Unfortunately, The Washington Post is owned by Bezos, who owns another competitor: Amazon Prime, however, some newspapers and media brands have significant authority that is ripe for the acquisition or would be open to exclusives if you reached out to them. Netflix needs to pursue more websites that will post links to it and write about it to deal with the media foothold that Disney’s media assets are using to pan Netflix. Use those assets to get your shows and brand on Google Page 1 for web and news results.
- Use your competitor’s company and show/movie names. You can make pages that say “Alternative to Amazon Prime” and “Alternative to Disney Plus” and other fantasy, action, and comedy shows. You can go through all of the genres.
In conclusion, Netflix has a golden opportunity to leverage search engines to get even more visibility. As a brand with a smaller amount of resources you too can take lessons from this blog and implement it. You can either do it yourself using your own time and the tools available from The SEO Queen Or you can hire us to execute all of the recommendations in this blog on your behalf. Remember, Rome was not built in a day, and to take your online presence to the next level you need to create quality content addressing the keywords that your ideal clients are searching for. You can book a complimentary no-obligation SEO consultation by clicking this link if you want to talk with me about this blog and how to apply its principles to your brand.
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