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Small Changes That Lead to Big Results

Posted By Darren Rowse 16th of May 2010 Miscellaneous Blog Tips 0 Comments

A Guest Post by James Dunworth. First Image by NDevil

business-graph.jpgOver the years I have spent hours working on tweaks to my websites that have lead to zero or imperceptible improvement in rankings and earnings.

On other hand, I have also made changes which took just a few minutes of my time – and lead to huge changes in profits and revenues.

All of the changes here took less than an hour to implement.


After linking AdSense to my analytics accounts, I analysed my website to see where adsense payments were coming from.

The results were astounding.

While there were around 800 hundred pages in my website, 70% of the revenue were generated from just 3 pages, relating to jobs in my niche.

I commissioned an advert from a freelancer. As I had another advert done at the same time it cost just $15. I placed the advert in a prominent position on my website.

That month my adsense revenue rose from $533 to $832.

Graph showing increase in adsense revenue.

That was last year. Last month revenue was over 2000 dollars. Obviously, now I know which pages are making money I have spent some serious effort in optimising those pages!


I have never liked pop up forms, and I assumed that most people would react in the same way as I often do when I see a pop up form – leave the website.

However, I decided to test the Aweber popover on my website.

The result? A huge increase in sign up rates, as shown in the graph below.

Image showing growth in monthly subscribers.

This hasn’t always been replicated on other websites I own, but it does make the case that you should always tests things, even when you think they won’t work – it might just make a huge difference to your site.

(Intriguingly, the new and much more attractive Aweber forms lead to an immediate and substantial drop in subscription rates!)


I decided to add images of users with electronic cigarettes to the front page of my e-commerce website, E-Cigarette Direct.

One particular image was of a Welsh National Opera singer using our product on stage. I chose this one because it showed the acceptance of the device by a very respected organisation in my country.

Opera singer smoking an electronic cigarette.

The next day orders flooded in.

When things settled down we were left with a 17% improvement in the conversion rate.

That meant thousands of dollars a month to our business!

Your thoughts

What small changes have you made to your blog or website which have made big a difference?

James Dunworth is the IT director of E Cigarette Direct, the UK distributor of the NJOY electronic cigarette (http://www.ecigarettedirect.co.uk). He is also the co-author of theTobaccoHarmReduction.org’s study Electronic Cigarette (E Cigarettes) As a Potential Harm Reduction Product,

About Darren Rowse
Darren Rowse is the founder and editor of ProBlogger Blog Tips and Digital Photography School. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn.
  1. Thought provoking post! And a good reminder to test things, rather than just assume they won’t work.

    I’ve started running Facebook ads, increasing the limits over the days that seem to perform better, then adding more specific links back to my site from the Fanpage.

  2. These are all very good tips for improving your blog and making it work for you.

    I’ve noticed that your two tips about having the pop-up and adding pictures has done wonders for my site.

    I have seen and dramatic increase in email subscribers and have also seen an increase in people ordering my product!

  3. James says: 06/05/2010 at 7:52 am

    Hi Michael

    Sorry for such a late reply.

    What the advert did was point to the part of the site that had the made us the most money. When people saw the (large!) advert they clicked through. Then, like everyone else, they clicked on the google ads.

    Hope that helps!


  4. @Rob
    Wow how can you criticize the effectiveness of the image of the singer and advocate skipping it when it clearly worked remarkably well and is therefore an excellent example of a good route to take?

    It’s like criticizing an athlete’s style after they already won the gold medal. If you have a better idea please share it but I’m afraid it’s a little late to argue something doesn’t work after it worked.

    Excellent article James I benefitted greatly. Thank you.

  5. Wonderful post – I was working on a similar article which I will probably still take a shot at, but from a slightly different angle. Thanks for sharing this with your readers…Obviously a lot of others appreciate it too!

  6. Hello!I find what you write really interesting and helpful. I started connecting via Internet 15 years ago but just with e-mail to my overseas mates and pupils, about three years back I took an online tutorials and got hooked. Your post made me notice that instinctively we look for people with our same views to share what we know and ask what we don’t know.

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