Conversion Optimization Case Studies

The Shelborne Beach Hotel, Ft Lauderdale, Florida


Conversion Optimization of

Business Description:

The Shelborne is the premier historic luxury hotel on the famous South Beach of Miami Florida. The Shelborne Beach Resort is considered one of Miami's most important cultural landmarks. With amenities for families, luxury tourists, celebrities and business travelers, the Shelborne Beach Resort on South Beach is one of the gems of Miami’s Deco District.

The Shelborne is a legendary hotel with a rich, mythic history. In the 1940's, 50's and 60's, The Shelborne was home to the jet set's social scene in Miami, the place to see celebrities and be seen on South Beach. As the area's reputation grew, new commercial developments appeared along South Beach. The construction of several brand name hotels and resorts along the beach caused bookings to decline significantly over time.

When they approached Metamend, The Shelborne had very specific performance targets for us to meet. The Shelborne had a website but it was under-performing. Our job was to help them increase the number of visitors to their site and turn more of those visitors into hotel guests.


  • Online hotel books were less than $25,000 per year
  • Average occupancy rates were less than 50%. The hotel closed during several weeks in the summer months.
  • The Shelborne Hotel's website was not visible in the first ten pages of search listings for relevant search queries.
  • Referrals from search engines numbered less than 2000 per month.
  • Conversions of search referrals was less than 1%. (site visitors "converted" into hotel bookings)
  • Competing hotel chains have far larger national marketing budgets


  • Defined a set of Key Performance Indicators (KPI) to articulate two critical business goals; building online revenues and increasing occupancy rates by converting greater numbers of site visitors.
  • First KPI – Increasing Search Referral Traffic:
    • Metamend revamped the Shelborne Beach Hotel website to correct structural issues that prevented search engine spiders from fully accessing the site.
    • Metamend's keyword research found a number of highly searched keyword phrases which The Shelborne Hotel was not targeting. (relating to: weddings, events, fashion shows, local events, etc…) Our goal was to find the phrases that would make the hotel most visible. Tools used: Enquisite, Word Tracker
    • Metamend optimized each page in the Shelborne Beach Hotel website to target this wider range of highly searched keyword phrases.
  • Second KPI – Improving Website Visitor Conversion Rates
    • Metamend worked on site content to make it more relevant to highly searched keyword phrases.
    • Metamend helped rearrange the look of the website to produce more beneficial visitor outcomes.

Metamend Results:

  • The Shelborne Beach Hotel website now outperforms major brands for keyword phrases such as South Beach Resort, South Beach Hotel and Miami Beach Hotel
  • Achieved an average of 3X the number of search referrals to the Shelborne Hotel webite. Campaign peak of 7% greater number of search referrals to The Shelborne Hotel website.
  • Conversion rate of site visitors has risen above 1% and continues to grow.
  • Revenues derived from online bookings have increased over 10X since The South Beach Hotel engaged Metamend Search Marketing