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How we used AMP to double conversion rate

22 Nov 2018
By Rich

Google are pretty transparent on their feelings towards site speed. Faster is better. They even back it up with a pretty scary stat

53% of users will leave a page if it hasn’t
loaded within 3 seconds.

What’s clear here, is that site speed isn’t an SEO thing, it’s a user thing, and increasing your site speed can have a real-world impact on improving your bottom line.

Likewise, site errors and issues with site speed can have the opposite effect, costing you money in the process.

So, improve site speed, and you’ll improve user experience and hopefully improve rankings and sales.

Site speed issues are not always the easiest to fix and more often than not require a developer to make changes. With this in mind, how do we balance the importance of site speed with other pressing actions for clients? How much resource should we put into speeding up the site based on the return you’ll get?

Here at Atom42, we’ve been testing that exact problem. What sort of improvements in conversion rate do we see when we improve load speed?

To do this, we’ve been testing accelerated mobile pages (AMPs) to dramatically increase loading times of our mobile landing pages and the results, are phenomenal.

But first… What are AMP?

AMP (Accelerated mobile pages) is an open-source, Google-backed project to provide users with pages that load almost instantaneously, reducing wait times and improving overall user experience on mobile. To achieve this smooth, more engaging experience, some sacrifices have to be made along the way. For example, AMPs don’t allow author-written javascript.

Instead, there are AMP versions to carry out regular javascript functions. You can find out more about AMPs here, but for this article, we’re going to focus a bit more on the implementation.

How easy is it to implement AMP on a site?

It depends… it’s touted as an easy to implement solution, but a lot of this will come down to your site setup. In most instances, you’ll be able to do it yourself, but if you are thinking about implementing AMP and need support, get in touch with us!

The results of implementation

First off, it’s worth pointing out the visual impact of implementing AMP.

In this instance both mobile pages looked identical before and after (we’ve purposefully not labelled which is which below, but as you can see, the on-page experience hasn’t been drastically altered or sacrificed).

This was a big bonus for us as we’d already spent considerable time UX testing and tweaking the design to drive CRO improvements, and didn’t want to sacrifice this for speed:

mobile pages examples

In fact, the only noticeable difference was the load speed and the conversion rate of these pages..

For the pages we converted to AMP, site speed saw a dramatic improvement, shaving seconds off load times, to the point where certain pages were loading 4x faster than their traditional mobile counterpart.

In turn, these increases in speed had a huge impact on conversion rate, with the majority of pages seeing 25-50% improvements, we’ve included 3 of our best-performing pages below:

a table of results for AMP

If you’re concerned about your website speed or are looking for ways to improve it then why not get in touch and see how we can help you.

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