Thoughts from the SearchPilot team

Announcing Full-Funnel Testing - testing SEO and CRO at the same time

Until now it’s not been possible to measure the impact of SEO and CRO at the same time. Today we’re proud to announce a new SearchPilot feature that we’re calling full funnel testing. SearchPilot launched with a focus on SEO testing. You have probably thought about this by comparing it to tools like Optimizely that allow you to do CRO testing. If you want to know more about how SEO testing works and how it’s different to CRO, you can read more in this post on what is SEO testing.

Craig Bradford

3 min read

Marginal losses: the hidden reason your SEO performance is lagging

Without a structured testing program, our experience shows that it’s very likely that most SEO efforts are at best taking two steps forward and one step back by routinely deploying changes that make things worse. hbspt.forms.create({ portalId: "7378679", formId: "9fa7f5d6-e043-4119-a3fc-4c3d4580b0f2" }); This is true even when the thinking behind a change is solid, is based on correct data, and is part of a well-thought-out strategy. The problem is not that all the changes are bad in theory - it’s that many changes come with inevitable trade-offs, and without testing, it’s impossible to tell whether multiple small downsides outweigh a single large upside or vice versa.

Will Critchlow

5 min read

Why do we measure SEO test impacts with traffic rather than rankings?

One of the most common questions I get about our SEO A/B testing platform is “why do you measure the results using search traffic instead of rankings?”. Three main reasons: Clickthrough rate (CTR) is a huge factor in how much organic traffic you get, and many SEO tests change how your site looks in the search results, and hence affect CTR. No position tracking tool can measure this Rank tracking can never cover the full tail of key phrases and will miss or misrepresent cases where the effect is different in the head vs in the long tail

Will Critchlow

2 min read

Getting an HTTPS migration done in an enterprise environment

There have been some excellent articles written about the steps necessary for a successful HTTP to HTTPS migration. Although we know that a move is becoming more and more pressing, knowing what to do is only a small part of the story when you’re working in an enterprise environment. Somehow, we need to figure out at the very least: Who do we need to persuade, and what’s going to convince them?

Will Critchlow

9 min read

How we did an emergency HTTPS migration using SearchPilot to avoid Chrome security warnings [case study]

Getting changes made in enterprise environments is hard, even when there are clear financial impacts of not making the changes. Anyone who hasn’t migrated to HTTPS by this point, is aware of the need; it hasn’t happened yet because of insurmountable blockers like mixed-content warnings in hard-to-update back-end systems. If this sounds like you, read on because the architecture of SearchPilot, deploying as a CDN, or between your CDN and origin, means that it’s agnostic to whatever server-side technologies you are using, and whatever CMS you have in place, so no matter what limitations your tech stack is imposing, SearchPilot can help get past these kinds of blockers and allow you to migrate quickly to HTTPS if you haven’t already done so.

Will Critchlow

6 min read

New SearchPilot features including SEO friendly URLs for enterprise platform

Earlier this year, we had a quarter where we deployed SearchPilot to two Fortune 100 companies’ sites and to the website of one of the largest private companies in the UK. I’ve written before about the ways that split testing is changing consulting but what we’ve found in these enterprise environments is that we are getting radically different results by adding agility to the mix. Perhaps unsurprisingly, it turns out that sometimes, being able to get stuff done is a differentiator in the enterprise.

Will Critchlow

7 min read

The Hierarchy of Evidence for Digital Marketing Testing

In the two-and-a-bit years that I’ve been working in Digital marketing, I’ve been keen to understand the reasons why we make the decisions we do in digital marketing. There’s a wide variety of ways to approach a problem, and although many of them have value, there has to be a best way to make sure that the decision you make is the right one. I wanted to take my evidence-first way of thinking and apply it to this field.

Sam Nemzer

7 min read

Early Results from Split Testing JavaScript for SEO

We’ve been testing what happens when pages rely on JavaScript to render properly - and one of our first tests showed an uplift when we removed a reliance on JS: When @distilled ran an SEO split test to remove a reliance on JavaScript, they saw an uplift in search performance — Will Critchlow (@willcritchlow) May 25, 2017 As many of you know, we believe that it’s increasingly important to be testing your hypotheses about what will affect your search performance.

Will Critchlow

5 min read

Do it Yourself SEO Split Testing Tool With Causal Impact

SearchPilot enables SEO A/B testing on large and enterprise websites. For people just starting out experimenting with SEO testing, you might want to be able to play with more basic mathematical approaches. Before we moved to a neural network model we used an approach based on a modified version of causal impact. We have a free version of a DIY tool that uses the causal impact approach that you can play with yourself using your own data.

Dominic Woodman

7 min read

One Year in: SearchPilot by the Numbers

SearchPilot is coming up on its 1st birthday. We ran our original public pilot in February and March 2016, before launching in April. We now do more requests every few hours than we did during that pilot period! We thought it might be interesting to highlight some of the numbers that tell the story of that growth. Read on for the low-down, or skip to the end for the story of a split-test that added £100,000 in revenue per month.

Tom Anthony

6 min read

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