Atlantic Vapor: Starting Over with New Challenges
The Problem: Atlantic Vapor had, among other issues, an eCommerce domain that was plagued by bad backlinks.
The Solution: We redesigned their site on a fresh domain, and hit the ground running with SEO to start building rankings for the new domain as quickly as possible.
Atlantic Vapor is setting sail in a storm. A storm that owner and founder Nick Kruczaj is confident he can weather. Nick recently teamed up with 1Digital Agency to rebrand and reopen his online vape shop, only to be confronted a few weeks later by new, stringent regulations on his business handed down by the FDA. When I talked to him last, Nick seemed fearless in the face of darkening clouds. “We always knew these regulations were looming,” Nick said. “There’s a lot that could still happen.”
When we first met Nick, his business had three names. He had a line of e cigs and e juice under Atlantic Vapor, a brick and mortar store in the King of Prussia Mall (one of the largest in the U.S.) named Depth Charge Vapor, as well as an eCommerce store called Atlantic Cigs. Nick called 1Digital because Atlantic Cigs was seeing rapidly declining traffic. Our SEO site audit revealed that Atlantic Cigs was sick with bad backlinks. Possibly the result of blackhat SEO techniques used in the past, the Atlantic Cigs domain was so entangled with spam sites that the domain was beyond saving. We pitched Nick on consolidating the product line and the eCommerce arm under the Atlantic Vapor brand, and got down to the work of rebranding and relaunching his web store.
1Digital not only redesigned Nick’s eCommerce site, but also refocused the kind of business Atlantic would be doing online. “I wanted to be more modern,” Nick said, “I also wanted to have more emphasis on the [Atlantic Vapor] juice.” The new Atlantic Vapor site will also see an increase in its selection of equipment made by other popular vape brands.
1Digital custom built Atlantic Vapor’s new site from the ground up. As part of the rebranding initiative, we changed Atlantic’s colors, as well as designed a new logo and label for Atlantic’s e liquids. A lot of our other changes focused on organization, redesigning elements to be more eye catching, and to match the new brand. “I love the look of the new site,” Nick said.
Since Atlantic Vapor would be starting out with a brand new domain, essentially starting from zero as far as Google is concerned, we knew that the site would need to hit the gas hard on SEO. This is especially important for an online vape shop, as SEO is the only digital marketing channel available to the industry. Every piece of category page content was written and optimized by our SEO marketing team before being added to the new site. 1Digital plans to continue those efforts into the future with a combination SEO and content marketing campaign targeting a high number of competitive keywords in the vape industry.
While we were all hard at work on Nick’s project, the FDA dropped a bombshell on the vape industry. In early May the FDA announced that they would be banning sales of e cigarettes to persons under 18, limiting some things the industry can do in advertising, and the big one, they ruled that all e liquid products on the market must be submitted for FDA review within two years. For someone like Nick, who makes his own e liquid, this will be a major change to how he does business.
Nick, however, does not seem ruffled by the new roadblocks. “We’re not too concerned,” Nick said. “I don’t think it’s over yet.” Nick’s confidence is probably well placed because, while regulation is new to the American vape market, Nick has been dealing with regulations for years through Atlantic Vapor’s international arm.
One of the most unique things about the Atlantic Vapor line are their cig a likes, e cigarettes made to look and feel as much like a regular cigarette as possible. Atlantic Vapor’s cig a likes are fully compatible with Greensmoke, a popular brand overseas, until they abandoned the international market a few years ago. Atlantic Vapor stepped in with their cig a likes so that customers who had already purchased components for Greensmoke wouldn’t be left out to dry.
His experience in the international market, combined with the fact that his business covers almost every facet of the vape market, has Nick confident that the new Atlantic Vapor will debut to success, despite the beefed up regulatory climate. “Regardless of what happens, I think Atlantic Vapor is in a good position,” Nick said. We here at 1Digital tend to agree.