Big Al’s Family Fitness SEO Case Study


A chain of gyms in New York had an online presence but was not ranking locally or in the greater Long Island region. Digital Elevator was brought in to elevate it all.

Company Background

Big Al’s Family Fitness is a large gym chain in the Long Island, NY area with two 40,000 square foot gyms and plans to build a third. The brand prides itself on delivering corporate-style gym amenities but with small time gym feel. As the fitness industry is one of the most competitive in the area, Big Al’s struggled to rank for any generic searches related to gyms in the two cities it operated and also wanted to rank for the many services they provided such as yoga, pilates, spinning, Koga and Zumba classes.

The Problem

Big Al’s gyms did not so much have a problem with SEO as they did with a lack of any SEO initiatives ever taking place. The close proximity of other corporate gyms (with huge marketing budgets) in addition to other fitness centers that focused on specific exercises (ex. yoga) made this a challenging market to bust into. It should also be noted that Big Al’s had two websites, one for each gym. The SEO campaign would have to be carried for both gyms – in different cities and with different services – simulatenoulsy.

The Big Al’s team decided that an online marketing strategy would help them generate more leads and would help to upsell existing members to more lucrative services. Luckily they called Digital Elevator and achieved their goals.

Our Solution

To start things off, Digital Elevator concentrated on improving the content of the website. This included geo-targeting all of the content (to help it rank for the local cities) by updating the title tags, headings, sub headings, alt descriptions within the pictures, and internal linking structure of the site(s). We also built out the content so that each service and amenity in the gym had a great description of what the potential members could expect.

In addition to updating all of the site’s content to rank within the respective cities, Digital Elevator also sought out to help the gym rank in a much larger geographic area: Long Island. We felt that there would be a lot more traffic that could be funneled to the website if we could target keywords that were related to the gym’s offerings in Long Island.

In addition to a sound content strategy that involved a geo-targeted approach, we also embarked on a strong blogging campaign that delivered 4-8 blogs to each site, each month.

Content wasn’t the only thing that was required to help the gym’s rank in the Long Island area, we also concentrated heavily on the following strategies and continue to do so:

  • Citation building: Building mentions of the Big Al’s name and contact info all across the web, especially on high traffic referral websites like Yelp, Google Places, Yellow Pages and City Search.
  • Link building: Creation of high quality content for industry websites with links back to the Big Al’s sites to generate referral traffic and influence search engine rankings.
  • Inbound content creation:  We create informative how-to guides and nutrition tutorials that are available for download that also rank really well in the search engines.
  • Lead capture: Most of the content that is created for the gyms provides a call-to-action to the visitors to leave their contact information so that the gym’s sales team can follow up.
  • Social media: We constantly strive to create highly visual content for the Big Al’s social media sites so that we can increase engagement, brand awareness as well as referral traffic to the sites.

We are proud to say that Big Al’s gym is enjoying a ton of traffic, has a huge number of qualified leads each month, and ranks for services locally and throughout the entire Long Island area.


Get our tips straight to your inbox, 
and become a better marketer.