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The Athenaeum Hotel & Residences

How we increased web traffic for an independent hotel via a PR strategy informed by a backlink audit – and why that matters for SEO.

Learn how we increased the Domain Authority of an independently owned hotel in London via PR – and why that matters for SEO (and bookings!).

If these walls could talk… The Athenaeum Hotel & Residence, an independent five-star hotel in Mayfair, has long been associated with the rich and famous. It has hosted the likes of Elizabeth Taylor and Russell Crowe.

Take That announced their split from the penthouse of The Athenaeum Hotel & Residence. Steven Spielberg installed an editing suite in one of the hotel’s residences while working on E.T., Close Encounters and Raiders of the Lost Ark.

The Athenaeum Hotel & Residence is still a home-from-home for the world’s biggest names – but it’s evolved and all rooms, suites, and addresses of The Residences (the hotel’s contemporary serviced apartments) are family friendly, warm and inviting.

Even with a lifetime of clout behind it, the hotel’s website wasn’t ranking for the phrases that would drive bookings. To be recognised as one of the capital’s leading hotels, we knew that The Athenaeum’s website would need to rank higher amongst its competitors for target keywords.

SEO was the answer. A big part of SEO is links. And getting the best links in 2023 is via Digital PR. Better links raise a website's domain authority, which can raise rankings as a result. The problem? The Athenaeum’s website had low authority. This was leading to lower rankings, less traffic – and fewer bookings.

Let’s show you how we tripled their monthly traffic.

Results – the highlights

  • Increase in domain authority (DA) from 38 to 46.
  • 53 backlinks secured.
  • Trebled monthly website visits – from 3,700 to 11,200.
  • 56 pieces of online coverage.
  • Audience reach of over 870 million.

29% of online coverage had a Domain Authority Ranking considered “Excellent” (a DA greater than 80), 11% considered “Very Good” and 53% considered “Good”.

68% of coverage was round-up inclusion – positioning The Athenaeum Hotel & Residences as one of the “best of” hotels in various categories, including “Best Hotels in London”.

The challenge

The Athenaeum Hotel & Residence's key objective was to increase their website’s domain authority via PR. This would enable them to rank higher amongst competitors, to increase web traffic, and reach more customers.

They also needed to increase brand exposure, so they would be recognised as one of the capital’s leading hotels.

A big challenge.

Here’s how we did it

First, we studied The Athenaeum Hotel & Residence's backlink profile in depth. This extensive analysis identified new opportunities, which we would develop into our communications strategy.

This strategy combined both traditional and digital PR methods, to improve the overall domain authority, and elevate the brand as a whole.

We always work with one eye on Google. Google loves to see links to websites – it’s a sign of trust and authority in that website's content.

But not all links are equal. Some are spam, some are manipulative. Some are incredibly powerful – from mainstream websites. But you can't get those links via traditional SEO tactics anymore. Enter Digital PR.

To understand why The Athenaeum Hotel & Residence's DA was so low, we had to see all of their links.

And that’s exactly what we did. We studied each link – where the links came from, the quality, and the context of the link.

On top of this, we looked for links that the competition had gained, to see where there were opportunities to get more.

During our audit, we uncovered a swathe of SEO errors on the hotel’s website that needed attention – like broken pages and poor user experience.

And we made some big discoveries.

The competition had been successful with family focused content and had gained many links from family publications. This was a part of the business that The Athenaeum Hotel & Residence hadn’t been promoting – but that they did exceptionally well.

To compete in this market, we needed to build exceptional links from relevant, high-calibre publications. To do that, we needed exceptional content.

We also discovered a real opportunity to expand into business and shopping publications, for additional coverage.

After this process, we carried out keyword research – to make sure our recommendations were actionable and achievable.

This backlink audit served as the backbone of our PR campaigns, which would ultimately result in new links and vastly improved DA for The Athenaeum Hotel & Residence.

Working closely with The Athenaeum Hotel & Residence's SEO agency, we recommended placing a higher focus on building relevant links that point deeply into website, for the best user experience. These “deep links” would improve usability, but also findability.

Learn more about deep links

We used our backlink audit to form the basis of our work. We used it to reclaim links that The Athenaeum had lost, and to review any potentially harmful links.

We also worked to remove any dead links, or ones that result in 404 error pages.

Winning new links came from our PR work. We devised a strategy to build links from huge publications – both in print and online – to improve The Athenaeum’s domain authority, while also achieving the right level of brand exposure.

Find out more about our digital PR campaign and brand partnership for The Athenaeum Hotel & Residence.

The Athenaeum Hotel & Residences x YOTO

The results

With a clean backlink profile, enhanced user experience, and an abundance of new links from world-class media, The Athenaeum Hotel & Residence's domain authority shot up from 38 to 46 in a short period.

Links came from renowned titles, like Harper’s Bazaar, Forbes, GLAMOUR, Esquire – and mainstream news like The Independent, The Telegraph and The Mail.

But the true result came when Google rankings began to improve.

Monthly website visits tripled – from 3,700 to 11,200 sessions.

Total audience reach exceeded 870 million.

We got these kinds of results because of our approach; a combination of expertise in SEO, digital PR, and traditional PR – driving traffic, conversions, and increased brand awareness.

A perfect storm, if you will.

Lost in search? Find yourself – with Lemongrass

Lemongrass is a specialist travel PR agency. Using data, storytelling, and SEO expertise, we get hotels found in Google.

Let’s start a project. Call +44 (0)1865 237 990 or email