SEO Case Study for Erik's DeliCafe in northern California

SEO Case Study: 90 Days After Optimizing for Erik’s DeliCafe in the SF Bay Area

The Challenge: Increase organic search keyword diversity and drive traffic to the location pages on

In this SEO case study, we’ll show you walk you through the centerpiece of our work with one of the Bay Area’s premier delis, Erik’s DeliCafe, to improve the quantity and quality of their organic traffic for all of their +/- 30 northern California locations.

The goal was to increase the average ranking of keywords the location pages were receiving impressions for, diversify and expand the range of keywords, and track the actions (“Goals” in Google Analytics) that mattered to Erik’s business performance – primarily ordering online for in-store pickup.

In addition to on-site traffic and activity, we were tasked with taking greater advantage of each locations’ Google Business Listing, including optimizing the listings to drive greater visibility and Actions (downloading Erik’s PDF menu, getting driving directions, ordering ahead, and calling the restaurants).

Solution 1: On-Page SEO improvements

The first thing we did in order to improve the location pages was review opportunities. We noted a number of areas to improve on, and began the process of visiting each location physically in order to gather real world insight by talking with the staff and take photos and videos to use on the pages.

Our on-page improvement steps:

  1. We added photo galleries of each restaurant that included 5-8 interior and exterior images of reach store. We also repurposed those images on the location’s Google Business Listing profile.
  2. We added significant text content – up to 1,200 words on each location page – that included a wide range of site-specific information, including favorite sandwiches, top soups and salads, and copy that was rich in language that the restaurant wanted to communicate to their customers as well as show up for in local Google searches.
  3. We broke all content into short, digestible chunks through use of drop-downs, bullet points, and horizontal rules. To further make the information into easy to read, we bolded highlighted words and added occasional accent color to design elements.
  4. We added keyword rich, informative content that helped Erik’s expand on their catering business, delivery service, order-ahead traffic, and strengthen softer daypart activity including dinner.

Solution 2: Optimize Google Business Listings of Erik’s DeliCafe restaurants

The location’s Google Business Listings were another goldmine of opportunity, especially given the fact that their prominence, especially for restaurants, increasingly becomes nearly as important of a web property as the website itself. With the Google Business Listing continually adding features like hours, CTAs, photos, videos, message capabilities and more, it is not uncommon for customers to search for a restaurant, get the GBL in their search result, get all the information they need, and take their action without ever clicking an organic search result to visit the restaurant’s website.

So, to take greater advantage of each location’s Google Business Listing, we:

  1. Rebuilt the common menu PDF that was posted across all Google Business Listings for all locations and tagged hyperlinks that led back to the website with UTM codes so we could track in Google Analytics.
  2. Added location specific photos and videos to the location gallery and continued to add images and videos on an ongoing basis.
  3. Maintained accurate business hours.
  4. Added UTM tags to all hyperlinks that connected to the location’s page on the website.
  5. Included links to Online Ordering in all instances the location had online ordering capability (through a third party service).
  6. Wrote business descriptions in the “About” section that told a specific, personalized, local story about the location.

APRIL 2024 Update:

Here are the top 5 things a sandwich shop (or similar local restaurant, bar or retailer) can do with their Google Business Profile to boost their online presence:

  • Complete and Maintain Your Profile: Fill out all relevant sections (hours, address, website, photos) and keep it updated. A complete profile inspires trust and provides crucial information for potential customers.
  • Post Regularly: Use Google My Business Posts to share:
    • New menu items or limited-time offers
    • Special events or promotions
    • Eye-catching photos of your sandwiches
  • Leverage High-Quality Images: Showcase vibrant photos of your best-looking sandwiches, your shop’s interior, and even happy customers.
  • Respond to Reviews: Actively respond to customer reviews, both positive and negative. Thank customers for the positive feedback, and address concerns in a timely, professional manner.
  • Encourage Reviews: Proactively ask satisfied customers to leave reviews. More positive reviews enhance your reputation and boost your search ranking.

Results: Increased Organic Search impressions and clicks, increased & trackable Google Business Listing traffic

As you can see in the slideshow below, our results consistently delivered improved metrics across every category we cared about: impressions, keyword diversity, average ranking, and overall organic traffic to the website.

Further, our optimization of the Google Business Listing led to increases in phone calls, driving directions, online orders and downloads of their PDF menu that included an embedded, trackable hyperlink to the website.


Bonus: Similar results were seen throughout the location pages of the Erik’s DeliCafe website.

Over the course of our project working with Erik’s DeliCafe, we followed this same process of on-page optimization coupled with Google Business Listing management in order to drive increases throughout their +/- 30 location chain of delicatessen restaurants.

The embedded Google Sheet below contains some of our initial tracking notes from the project, including comparison of some top-line metrics from Google Search Console.

IMPORTANT NOTE: The Erik’s Delicafe website has changed significantly since our engagement with them, so the work we did is not reflected in any way on their current website. The below spreadsheet is a modified copy of a working document we shared with them during our engagement and should not be used to reference any content or design executed on their website.

These online marketing techniques can help every brick and mortar business thrive.

These same techniques can be powerfully effective at driving visibility, organic traffic and business results for every brick and mortar business – from restaurants to retail, from professional services to recreation. We have even employed variations of these same tactics for coworking office spaces and auto dealers.

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