How Gymshark is Using SEO to Grow Their Business Even Faster

SEO has a place for everybody and I’m going to prove it to you in today’s article. Today, we’re going to dig into Gymshark and what they’re doing on the SEO side of things to scale their brand even further. First, we’ll dig into what Gymshark is and what they’re all about, what some of their challenges may be in terms of SEO, and then how they’re looking to solve that challenge with their blog.

By the end of this article, you’re going to have a better understanding of how you might be able to use SEO for your business or brand, regardless of what space you’re operating in.

What is Gymshark?

Gymshark is an apparel brand based out of Britain that employees 850 people, and they essentially are a trendy under armor in Britain.

Right off the bat, when you visit their website, you’ll notice that they have different clothes for women and men. And as you scroll through here, you’re going to see all their different product lines. You’ll see things like bottoms and leggings, crop tops, hoodies and jackets, and things like that.

But right off the bat, this leads us to a really quick understanding of why they might have some challenges when it comes to SEO. Because if you were just to think for a second, that you were wanting to rank for something like fit seamless cropped leggings, you can just imagine how there’s probably hundreds of clothing brands that are trying to rank for that same exact phrase.

That can be really, really difficult, which naturally leads us to what Gymshark has been doing from an SEO side in order to address this issue. So right off the bat, what I know from Gymshark’s overall domain is that they focus on what they do best, which is selling their product. And that’s exactly what a brand like Gymshark should be doing. However, you’ll notice that as we are scrolling through these pages, there’s really not all that much information about these particular products on these pages.

How is Gymshark addressing this issue?

That can be really, really difficult, which naturally leads us to what Gymshark has been doing from an SEO side in order to address this issue. So right off the bat, what I know from Gymshark’s overall domain is that they focus on what they do best, which is selling their product. And that’s exactly what a brand like Gymshark should be doing. However, you’ll notice that as we are scrolling through these pages, there’s really not all that much information about these particular products on these pages.

Sure there’s some general product descriptions and things like that, that I’m scrolling through right now. But for the most part, it’s your pretty standard e-commerce experience. However, in the top right corner, I noticed something interesting that I then wanted to dig further into and that pretty much inspired today’s video. On the top right you’ll see this blog section. And when you click that, it’s going to open up what they call Gymshark Central.

What is Gymshark Central?

And this is the heart and soul of their digital marketing efforts. What Gymshark has effectively realized is that they cannot actually rely on their main domain to rank for a ton of phrases that are related to their business. So instead, what they’ve done is they’ve built this website on their blog that does this for them.

So what you’ll notice is that as we dig into this blog, we’re going to see some themes to what they do as a brand, but also we’re going to see just some general contact that positions them into their overall industry. So let’s take a look here. What Gymshark central has on the right-hand side are some editor picks.

You’ll see things like strength training exercise to improve your running, new in this sort of product they might have as well as, there is somebody that’s explaining the study of sleep. And then you’ll see, as we scroll through, they are looking to rank for phrases such as Gymshark Black Friday 2021.

And you’ll see that they’re doing this for men’s deals and women’s deals. And I want you to think for a second why they might have done this. Well, for one thing, they don’t want somebody else to be potentially ranking for this phrase. And then through their affiliate program, having to pay out that person, if they already have the domain authority to be able to rank for this themselves.

So it’s can be a defensive SEO strategy for them to create posts like this, because essentially make sure that their domain is in control of this search phrase of Gymshark Black Friday. And the best way to actually test this is just go ahead and open an incognito window and search for this. And what you can see is the very top result is from Gymshark Central.

And what you’ll notice is that below that you can see there are other people that are going after this phrase. Women’s Health mag was going after this phrase as well. And this is probably a situation in which what’s happening is they are getting a cut of sales if they were to refer people to Gymshark. In this case, in the bottom left, you can see this actual redirect in which it’s going to some sort of affiliate marketing website.

Why Gymshark has taken this strategy?

One of the reasons is because they want to go after their own domain phrases, so they don’t have to do payouts to affiliate partners that they don’t have to actually cut if they were to just own it themself. The other thing that’s interesting as we start to work our way through the Gymshark blog though, is that they cover more than just their own brand phrases.

As I started to scroll through Gymshark’s blog, I started to notice the brilliance of what exactly they’re doing. You’ll see things that cover their different product lines. But you’ll also see things that talk about things related to fitness overall, and you can see this in their major categories. They have a category for Gymshark, where they’re talking about all the different things around Gymshark.

So this is all their Black Friday stuff. This is also talking about probably some of the athletes that are affiliated with Gymshark. But you also notice that they have things like conditioning and health sections, and these are where they start to dig into just general search phrases that people that are in fitness care about or things that their customers care about.

And what this allows them to do is really position themselves as a thought leader or partner in the space as they’re helping their customers achieve their fitness goals. You’ll notice as well that all of these particular posts are branded with Gymshark gear. All of these people are wearing Gymshark gear. And so what they’re able to do is they’re essentially able to provide they’re customers as well as their prospects with content that might be useful for them. And they are doing it all with Gymshark gear on it.

So it’s all just product marketing, it’s product placement, because if you were to search for this phrase for stretches to do before running to avoid injury. So let’s just look for a derivative of this phrase. So stretches every runner should do to avoid injury. All right. So I’m going to look for this and I can see the top result stretches every runner to avoid injury, they are ranking number one for this, right? So they’ve got the featured snippet. And so this is something in which if I were just a runner looking to avoid injury, I might land on Gymshark’s blog.

And from here, I’d get all this product marketing in which Gymshark is pretty much just teaching me how to avoid injury, but also I’m just seeing this constant exposure to Gymshark’s brand of potentially interesting me in their product. So this is a really powerful approach to content marketing because it’s not as direct as what we saw at the Black Friday approach, however, it’s still really powerful because they’re getting organic placements from this.

Is the strategy working?

So now that we better understand what Gymshark is doing, we have to ask ourselves, is this strategy even working? Sure, we have the example in which I just showed you in an incognito window when I was searching for ways to prevent injury for runners that they ranked in the top spot.

But how possible is it that this is actually working at scale. To answer this question, we need to dig into Ahrefs. So what I’m going to do is I’m going to hop into Ahrefs and put in Gymshark central’s blog into Ahrefs. And what you can see here is that Gymshark’s blog is actually doing really well. In fact, they have 57,000 organic keywords that they’re organically ranking for along with an average traffic value of 68,000.

And you also noticed that when I go into the organic search, and if I go into there all time, you’ll see that this has been a steady source of traffic over time for the last year or so since they launched it. So it looks like they launched this effort about a year or so ago, or at least that’s when the crawlers of Ahrefs started to see these results. And they’re doing well.

And then when I dig into top pages, I can further validate this. If I go into top pages, you can see how the top phrases will give me an understanding of what sort of content strategy is working for Gymshark. In this case, they are ranking really well for our workouts. In fact, they’re the top placement for a phrase that gets 17,000 visits.

I want you to just imagine for a second. If I get 17,000 monthly searches for a phrase and I have the number one spot that means I’m getting probably at least 1700 hits every single month. And when I go to this page, what’s probably happening as well is I am getting exposure to Gymshark you see how he’s wearing Gymshark, I’m seeing these models that are all wearing Gymshark apparel, and I’m learning about how to solve my problem with Gymshark.

So that’s really powerful because this is essentially working over and over again in which they are creating five best exercise for better traps, best back stretches to improve flexibility and all of these things are giving them long tail phrases that lead to traffic. Traffic means that there are opportunities for conversions. Conversions means their sales and sales means a growing business. And that’s exactly what Gymshark has been doing over the years. So this strategy is clearly working for them.

Another interesting thing we can do in Ahrefs is we can look in the organic search section and look at what other sites they are competing with. So you can see that Gymshark is competing with all, Legion Athletics, as well as Oxygen Mag. So just going into that site, let’s take a look at all Max Nutrition. You can see that this is pretty much nutritional website for fitness, and then you can see that Legion Athletics pretty similar as well. It’s pretty much a different nutrition supplements for fitness. So what they’re probably doing is they’re probably taking a very similar approach on their blog in which they are probably going over content very similar to this.

And so you can see this is all long form content probably as well. Exactly the same sort of approach. So this is clearly working in the fitness space and Gymshark probably caught onto this and then wanting to make use of their strong domain authority as a whole in order to ride this wave as well.

Big takeaways

There are really two big insights that I think you can remember from Gymshark’s example.

  1. The first thing is don’t be afraid to adapt and introduce digital marketing later on in your brand. Gymshark didn’t start their blog until the last few years or so. And it was from years and years of building their core business that potentially they reached a upper end of where their organic business was coming from. And they realized that all of their competitors were getting all this free traffic that they could convert as well. And so don’t be afraid to jump on something later on once you’ve solidified your core business.
  2. The second thing that I think you can learn from Gymshark Central is it’s all about positioning yourself as an authoritative source for content in your overall niche. Gymshark is a fitness apparel company. However, they’re writing articles on how to avoid injury before you go running. So they’re doing things that are tangentially related to their space because they want to be involved or at least relevant in the conversation regardless of where you might be in connection to your eventual purchase of fitness gear.

So what they’re doing here is they’re thinking about all the phrases that people might be searching for when it comes to fitness and then trying to work their way further on to be earlier on in the overall customer acquisition funnel. That way when somebody actually does get to that point where they’re looking for runner shorts or something like that, they will think in the back of their head to potentially check out Gymshark and their brand.

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