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BrightonSEO - SearchPilot - Will Critchlow - Lessons from 100s of SEO tests

Lessons from SearchPilot's enterprise SEO tests.

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Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO
Do we need tests?
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Reconfiguring page layout - What do you think?
Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO
Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO
Ask the audience
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Result - 7% less organic traffic - Twitter was wrong

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BrightonSEO - SearchPilot - Will Critchlow - Lessons from 100s of SEO tests

  • 2. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO Do we need tests?
  • 3. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO Reconfiguring page layout - What do you think?
  • 5. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO Ask the audience
  • 6. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO Result - 7% less organic traffic - Twitter was wrong
  • 7. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO Forcing Google to respect meta descriptions - what do you think?
  • 8. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO Ask the audience
  • 9. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO Result - 3% less organic traffic - Twitter was wrong
  • 10. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO Adding the current month and year to title tags - what do you think?
  • 11. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO Ask the audience
  • 12. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO Result - 5% more organic traffic - Twitter was right
  • 13. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO How are we running these tests?
  • 14. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO Flights NYC Search LA Search Seattle Search Austin Search Boston Search Dallas Search Find a group of pages using the same template
  • 15. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO Create a hypothesis you want to test {{City}} Flights Search {{City}} Flights Search Current template Proposed template
  • 16. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO SearchPilot creates test buckets Dallas Flights Search Austin Flights Search Boston Flights Search NYC Flights Search LA Flights Search Seattle Flights Search Control Pages Variant Pages Dallas Flights Search Austin Flights Search Boston Flights Search NYC Flights Search LA Flights Search Seattle Flights Search
  • 17. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO Flights NYC Search LA Search Seattle Search Austin Flights Search Boston Flights Search Dallas Flights Search SearchPilot applies changes to the variant pages Austin Search Boston Search Dallas Search
  • 18. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO Flights NYC Search LA Search Seattle Search Austin Search Boston Search Dallas Search SearchPilot applies changes to the variant pages
  • 19. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO Search engine A/B testing is different from user A/B testing Key point
  • 20. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO A B A B A B A B A B A B Splitting pages not users SEO Testing VS User Testing
  • 21. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO Conversion rate optimisation focuses on converting more of your existing traffic (bottom of the funnel) Conversion Rate Optimisation
  • 22. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO Search engine optimisation focuses on getting additional traffic to your website (top of funnel) Conversion Rate Optimisation Search Engine Optimisation
  • 23. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO Full funnel testing combines these approaches to do both at the same time Full Funnel Testing
  • 24. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO Lessons learned
  • 25. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO 1. JavaScript understanding is improving, but is not perfect
  • 26. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO JS display dependency causes 6% lower performance Negative
  • 27. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO JS display dependency causes 6% lower performance Negative Pre-rendering AngularJS that was being rendered correctly Neutral
  • 28. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO JS display dependency causes 6% lower performance Negative Pre-rendering AngularJS that was being rendered correctly Neutral Improving UX with more responsive JS front end = +13% uplift Positive
  • 29. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO Key insight: tests should not rely on JavaScript If they do, every test you run is testing both your hypothesis and whether Google is interpreting the JS correctly
  • 30. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO 2. User experience is growing in importance
  • 31. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO 2. User experience is growing in importance
  • 32. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO 3. Hidden content is still a big deal
  • 33. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO 3. Hidden content is still a big deal
  • 34. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO 4. SERP appearance makes a huge difference
  • 35. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO 4. SERP appearance makes a huge difference
  • 36. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO 5. Structured data can move the needle
  • 37. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO 6. Internal links are still really powerful and important Read more
  • 38. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO 7. Content quality is in the eye of the beholder
  • 39. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO 8. Assorted surprising results: EAT
  • 40. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO 8. Assorted surprising results: HTML ordering
  • 41. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO All of this is why we built SearchPilot
  • 42. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO Who am I?
  • 43. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO Who am I?
  • 44. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO [ Image here ] #1 SEO teams struggle to get important changes made “the average SEO at a big company has been waiting over six months for their highest priority technical change” Read the blog bost
  • 45. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO [ Image here ] Without controlled experiments that give the uplift from each change along with a confidence interval, teams rely on year over year changes and before and after analysis #2 SEO teams find it hard to prove the value of their work
  • 46. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO [ Image here ] #3 Itʼs also harder than ever to know what to do “even SEO consultants with more than three years of experience were still worse than a coin-flip at guessing Googleʼs judgement of two pages” Read the research here
  • 47. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO [ Image here ] On the average poll, about ⅓ of respondents are right
  • 48. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO Introducing SearchPilot
  • 49. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO [ Image here ] You can try your hand We publish a case study every two weeks. A few days before publishing the results, we poll our Twitter audience (mostly SEOs) on what they think the outcome of the test will be. Follow @SearchPilot to take part
  • 50. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO Thereʼs loads more on our website We publish our case study email newsletter because itʼs the resource we wish existed
  • 51. Tweet me: @willcritchlow #BrightonSEO Thanks! Follow @SearchPilot to take part in polls Get on the email list at www.searchpilot.com Ask me questions: @willcritchlow