Thoughts from the SearchPilot team

What is SEO split testing?

Last week I tweeted an explanation of how we know that an increase or decrease in SEO performance was caused by a change that we made or by an external factor like seasonality, competitors, Google updates etc. People found it helpful and it generated a lot of questions so I thought it would be useful to post a more detailed explanation on what exactly SEO split-testing is as there seems to be a lot of confusion/misunderstanding.

Craig Bradford

5 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

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

Split Testing Titles and H1s: Do They Still have an SEO Impact?

Let’s start by going back to 1998, back before anyone knew what Google was and the likes of Tom Anthony and Will Critchlow had just begun to build websites from their bedrooms. It was important to repeat your keywords keywords keywords across the site so that AltaVista & co. would know your keywords were very important, as keywords were how you ranked. You wanted to make sure your keywords were in your title, and that your keywords were in H1 tags, and that your keywords were just about everywhere else.

Tim Allen

6 min read

Announcing our Optimization Delivery Network

[Editor’s note:] This post first appeared on when we announced the platform that became SearchPilot which was initially built by Distilled before spinning out as an independent company before Distilled was acquired by Brainlabs. There are two big problems with providing organic search consulting advice. The first is that it’s often exceptionally hard to get your recommendations implemented, and the second is that it’s often really hard to know how much of a difference your recommendations will make.

Will Critchlow

2 min read
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