Site speeds up: Revenue jumps 39%

Site speeds up: Revenue jumps 39%

I’ve been working with clients lately, incorporating the information I’ve used on the show the last few weeks, and we’re getting some good results. I want to emphasize that the SEO tweaks alone can’t do the job you want it to do. You’ll get the most effective results if you’re already doing everything else right already. You’re checking for links, you’re responding to your clients’ needs, you’re posting fresh content frequently. Build your audience first, and then tweak the SEO to build on what you’ve already done.

A client of mine had a big drop in his conversion rates in the last six months. I took a look at all the behind the scenes details and didn’t find any bad links, Google wasn’t ranking any ghost pages, and nothing else popped up as a reason for the drop. Then I looked at the history of when the decline started. The site’s developers pushed through responsive design last April and, while there was an initial spike in conversion rate, it settled down to a rate that was a full third less than the previous conversion rate. That was my first clue, and it gave me the direction to look in.

Google Analytics claimed that the site took five seconds to load before the responsive design push happened, and 10 seconds afterward. Now, the way Google counts load time, it’s not a very accurate time score. What is accurate is the relative difference between the two times. It’s taking twice as long for my client’s site to load, and as a result, he’s losing a lot of customers.

I had the client upgrade to increase his overall loading speed, and we had some strange results. Site clicks are up, but conversion is still down. On the other hand, revenue is up a whopping 39%.

Further study is needed, but those are results I can’t argue with.

Jim Stewart is a leading expert in search engine optimisation. His business StewArt Media has worked with clients including Mars, M2 and the City of Melbourne.

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