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How To Use Pinterest For Ecommerce

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How To Use Pinterest For Ecommerce

Pinterest is one of the least popular, most underused social media platforms for brand marketing.

However, the lack of popularity is not due to the lack of potential.

Pinterest, when used right, can add immense value to ecommerce brand success.

Pinterest bursts with potential, but it also has its own playbook. It is different than other social platforms, and requires a unique approach to win.

From investing in Pinterest ads to building a consistent posting schedule, in this article, you’ll find some best practices and tips on building successful Pinterest marketing campaigns.

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But before we get to that, let’s first talk about whether Pinterest is good for ecommerce.

Is Pinterest Good For Ecommerce?

“Don’t spread yourself too thin!”

This is a popular piece of advice people give to ecommerce brands starting social media marketing. And it is valuable advice.

So, is it worth going into Pinterest if you already have a Facebook, Instagram, or TikTok account?

Yes, in most cases.

Pinterest has immense shopping potential, perhaps more so than all the other social media platforms.

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The platform offers fluff-free, simple suggestions. This is why Pinterest is the go-to place for customers looking for new brands or product inspirations.

80% of weekly Pinterest users have discovered a new brand or product via Pinterest.

55% of Pinterest users get on the app specifically to search for products.

More importantly, Pinterest shoppers have 85% bigger baskets than shoppers on other platforms.

All of these statistics hint at one thing, and one thing only.

Pinterest is not just good for ecommerce. It is absolutely unmissable for any ecommerce brand looking to engage its audience.

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A European DIY, gardening, and furniture marketplace brand, convinced of the value Pinterest offers for an ecommerce brand, jumped on the platform and tried engaging an audience from a new market using the platform’s ad products.

Their customer outreach efforts garnered 6.6 million impressions and led to a 7.9% lift in sales.

Why Use Pinterest For Ecommerce?

Besides being good for ecommerce, many other factors make Pinterest the ultimate marketing platform for brands looking to drive ecommerce growth.

Here’s why:

Pinterest Allows Omnichannel Marketing

The modern customer’s buying journey is more complex than ever.

This is why you need to multiply your customer touchpoints and be where your audience is to increase the chances of winning them as customers.

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An omnichannel marketing strategy helps with that – and Pinterest helps run an omnichannel campaign.

Pinterest is home to a unique audience, using the app with a fixed goal in mind.

Marketing on Pinterest takes your brand to this audience through a content format they love the most – engaging visuals. This helps prospects remember brands and eventually shop from them when needed.

Image Search Capabilities

The rise of visual search has increased the importance of Pinterest for ecommerce.

30% of U.S. adults (34 and younger) have used visual search for shopping as of August 2022.

The Pinterest mobile app has the Pinterest Lens feature, which users can use for visual searches. This is similar to Google Lens, but Pinterest has a more extensive image database, generating better results.

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Marketing on Pinterest helps you jump on the rising visual search trend before everyone else, enabling you to gain an edge over the competitors.

An Ecosystem Built To Support Brands

Pinterest has invested heavily in building an ecommerce-friendly ecosystem.

It gives verified sellers a verified merchant tag, reinforcing the brand’s credibility.

Screenshot from Pinterest, January 2023

The platform also has excellent ad products that can help brands maximize their reach and get closer to their goals.

Advanced Pinterest Analytics help you track your efforts and optimize them for better results.

Lately, Pinterest has also been experimenting with an in-app checkout feature that will let the buyers complete their purchase without leaving the app.

These features combine to make Pinterest a healthy home for ecommerce growth.

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A Conversion-Focused Audience

89% of weekly Pinners use Pinterest for inspiration in their path to purchase. This is perhaps why Pinners are 7x more likely to buy things they’ve saved.

Marketing on Pinterest effectively helps you reach these conversion-ready shoppers and get them tumbling through your sales funnel.

Pinterest Ecommerce Strategy

Now that we have you all riled up about Pinterest and its ecommerce potential, let’s help you set up a Pinterest marketing campaign with some proven best practices:

Start With Creating A Business Account

First things first, you will need a Pinterest business account to start marketing on the platform, which is pretty easy to create.

A Pinterest business account gives you access to the platform’s merchant tools, like Pinterest Analytics and ads.

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Make sure to include complete business information within your profile: your business name, logo, and website address.

You can only connect to one website on Pinterest. Preferably, choose the one you make sales on.

Identify Your Pinterest Goals

As with any marketing strategy, your Pinterest strategy will be defined by a set of goals.

Think: what is it that you want to achieve through Pinterest? Increased brand awareness? More sales?

Once you have identified your goals, it will become easier for you to define your content strategy and start pinning.

Create Outstanding Pins

Success on Pinterest – or any social platform, for that matter – comes from attention.

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Unlike other social platforms, Pinterest is crowded with visuals. Therefore, it may be tougher to stand out with less-than-outstanding Pins.

Create aesthetically pleasing, on-brand Pins with eye-catching colors to help them stand out from the ever-growing Pinterest crowd.

When creating image Pins, stick to vertical images with a 2:3 aspect ratio to make sure your Pins appear high quality and look complete.

Outstanding pin on Pinterest exampleScreenshot from Pinterest, January 2023

Consider linking the pin to a landing page to drive traffic to your ecommerce store. Make sure the landing page content aligns with what’s featured on the pin to drive user satisfaction.

Write power titles and descriptions for your Pins. Pinterest allows 100 characters for titles, and 500 characters for descriptions. Use this space to create eye-catching and optimized titles and descriptions that drive clicks and engagement.

Try to include bullets as you write descriptions to increase the digestibility of the content. No one likes reading blocks of text, especially when they are scrolling Pinterest.

Make video Pins as well to engage your audience and keep your feed from looking monotonous.

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When creating a video Pin, start with a powerful hook that captures and holds the attention and includes closed captions for people viewing on mute.

Video Pin on Pinterest exampleScreenshot from Pinterest, January 2023

The ideal length for organic videos is between 15 seconds to a minute, and 6 to 15 seconds for ads, according to Pinterest. Keep your videos within these ranges.

Video creatives matter as well. Eye-catching video creatives can go a long way. Cadbury generated 134% higher engagement rates while attempting to drive brand awareness for its new products, all through dazzling video creatives.

Pick a strong cover image for your video Pin that tells the viewers what the video is about.

Finally, don’t forget to use Idea Pins.

Idea Pins are like Pinterest stories. Pinterest calls them multi-stage canvases. Idea Pins are a great way to engage your audience and share ideas in a compelling manner.

 

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Idea Pins exampleScreeshot from Pinterest Newsroom, January 2023

Build Organized Boards

As you start pinning, it is crucial to stay organized.

Sort your content out in well-defined boards.

You can create individual boards for all your product categories. For example, if you sell clothes, you can create separate boards for men, women, summer dresses, formal wear, etc.

Check out how Allrecipes has organized all their recipes into well-defined boards:

Organized board example from PinterestScreenshot from Pinterest, January 2023

Optimize Your Pins For SEO

Pinterest gets, and drives, massive traffic. In May 2022, around 945 million visits were reported to Pinterest.com.

The tremendous traffic that Pinterest is getting not only highlights exposure opportunities but also underscores its capabilities of multiplying your ecommerce store traffic.

But first, you will need to gain visibility on the platform. And for that, you will need SEO.

Pinterest SEO is pretty simple. Find out the relevant keywords. You can do this using Pinterest’s guided search, Google AdWords, or Pinterest Ad targeting.

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search on PinterestScreenshot from Pinterest, January 2023

You can also pick up good keywords by searching for relevant products or themes on Pinterest and looking at how the platform has categorized and subcategorized the Pins.

Pins on search for Screenshot from Pinterest, January 2023

Looking at the competitors’ Pins may also help uncover some great keywords.

Use these keywords in your Pin titles and descriptions and board titles and descriptions to increase relevance with the users’ searches.

Besides relevance, engagement is also said to drive visibility. So, try to build engagement for increased exposure.

Stay Consistent With Publishing

As cliche as it sounds, consistency is the key to Pinterest’s success.

Build a pinning schedule and stick to it.

Brands have seen their traffic spike after increasing their pinning frequency.

There’s no magic number that you need to hit. Start with as many Pins as you can manage without compromising the quality, and gradually build your way up.

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Just make sure not to post too little content. You may lose your prospects to competitors. And don’t post too frequently so as to overwhelm your audience.

Strike a nice balance.

Keep Alternating Your Content

Your users might get bored of your feed if it is filled with the same kind of content. Keep things interesting by mixing up your posts.

Share informative content like blogs, infographics, guides, product-related posts, and videos.

Invest In Pinterest Ads

If you want to kick-start your Pinterest journey, consider investing in Pinterest ads.

The platform offers a powerful advertising system. Pinterest ads are 2.3x more cost-efficient and generate 2x higher return on ad spend (ROAS) for retail brands than other social media.

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You also have access to a wide variety of ad formats that you can choose from.

Pinterest also offers extensive ad targeting capabilities to help you reach your audience in the best possible ways.

Track Pinterest Analytics

Pinterest offers a platform native analytics tool – Pinterest Analytics – to help brands measure their marketing efforts against their goals.

This tool offers all the metrics you need to gain insight into your campaign performance, like referral traffic, leads generated, engagement, etc. Use these metrics to determine the efficacy of your campaigns and guide your future marketing efforts.

Tips For Successful Pinterest Marketing

The best practices in the previous section are good enough to help you set off your Pinterest journey. But here are some additional tips to further fine-tune your campaigns:

Ensure Consistent Branding

Customers shop with brands they trust – and nothing builds trust like consistent branding.

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This may be why consistent branding is said to increase revenue by 33%.

Ensure your Pinterest profile is consistent with the branding across all other social platforms.

Stay Current With Trends

Pinterest, like all social media, is big on trends and rewards brands that stick to what’s trending.

Find out what’s trending on the platform at any given time. If it fits your brand, jump on the trend to demonstrate relevance and maximize exposure.

Use Rich Pins

Rich Pins pull information from your website so your users can find out all they need to know about what you are featuring in your Pins.

Use Rich Pins to drive user engagement and satisfaction. There are three different types of Rich Pins.

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Use the ones that are most relevant to your brand.

Follow And Engage With Other Accounts

You need to build your community to get engagement on Pinterest. And for that, you will have to invest some time engaging with other relevant accounts on the platform.

Like, comment, and re-pin posts from various accounts to engage with others on the platform and increase your own engagement.

Final Words

Pinterest is an underused goldmine of ecommerce success.

Leverage its potential by creating outstanding Pins and sharing them through your business accounts.

Make sure your content aligns with your audience’s preferences and goes out regularly and frequently to stay on top of your customer’s minds.

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Track your Pinterest analytics and use your findings to optimize your Pinterest marketing strategy for continued growth.

More resources: 


Featured Image: Kaspars Grinvalds/Shutterstock



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Google On Hyphens In Domain Names

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What Google says about using hyphens in domain names

Google’s John Mueller answered a question on Reddit about why people don’t use hyphens with domains and if there was something to be concerned about that they were missing.

Domain Names With Hyphens For SEO

I’ve been working online for 25 years and I remember when using hyphens in domains was something that affiliates did for SEO when Google was still influenced by keywords in the domain, URL, and basically keywords anywhere on the webpage. It wasn’t something that everyone did, it was mainly something that was popular with some affiliate marketers.

Another reason for choosing domain names with keywords in them was that site visitors tended to convert at a higher rate because the keywords essentially prequalified the site visitor. I know from experience how useful two-keyword domains (and one word domain names) are for conversions, as long as they didn’t have hyphens in them.

A consideration that caused hyphenated domain names to fall out of favor is that they have an untrustworthy appearance and that can work against conversion rates because trustworthiness is an important factor for conversions.

Lastly, hyphenated domain names look tacky. Why go with tacky when a brandable domain is easier for building trust and conversions?

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Domain Name Question Asked On Reddit

This is the question asked on Reddit:

“Why don’t people use a lot of domains with hyphens? Is there something concerning about it? I understand when you tell it out loud people make miss hyphen in search.”

And this is Mueller’s response:

“It used to be that domain names with a lot of hyphens were considered (by users? or by SEOs assuming users would? it’s been a while) to be less serious – since they could imply that you weren’t able to get the domain name with fewer hyphens. Nowadays there are a lot of top-level-domains so it’s less of a thing.

My main recommendation is to pick something for the long run (assuming that’s what you’re aiming for), and not to be overly keyword focused (because life is too short to box yourself into a corner – make good things, course-correct over time, don’t let a domain-name limit what you do online). The web is full of awkward, keyword-focused short-lived low-effort takes made for SEO — make something truly awesome that people will ask for by name. If that takes a hyphen in the name – go for it.”

Pick A Domain Name That Can Grow

Mueller is right about picking a domain name that won’t lock your site into one topic. When a site grows in popularity the natural growth path is to expand the range of topics the site coves. But that’s hard to do when the domain is locked into one rigid keyword phrase. That’s one of the downsides of picking a “Best + keyword + reviews” domain, too. Those domains can’t grow bigger and look tacky, too.

That’s why I’ve always recommended brandable domains that are memorable and encourage trust in some way.

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Read the post on Reddit:

Are domains with hyphens bad?

Read Mueller’s response here.

Featured Image by Shutterstock/Benny Marty

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Reddit Post Ranks On Google In 5 Minutes

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Google apparently ranks Reddit posts within minutes

Google’s Danny Sullivan disputed the assertions made in a Reddit discussion that Google is showing a preference for Reddit in the search results. But a Redditor’s example proves that it’s possible for a Reddit post to rank in the top ten of the search results within minutes and to actually improve rankings to position #2 a week later.

Discussion About Google Showing Preference To Reddit

A Redditor (gronetwork) complained that Google is sending so many visitors to Reddit that the server is struggling with the load and shared an example that proved that it can only take minutes for a Reddit post to rank in the top ten.

That post was part of a 79 post Reddit thread where many in the r/SEO subreddit were complaining about Google allegedly giving too much preference to Reddit over legit sites.

The person who did the test (gronetwork) wrote:

“…The website is already cracking (server down, double posts, comments not showing) because there are too many visitors.

…It only takes few minutes (you can test it) for a post on Reddit to appear in the top ten results of Google with keywords related to the post’s title… (while I have to wait months for an article on my site to be referenced). Do the math, the whole world is going to spam here. The loop is completed.”

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Reddit Post Ranked Within Minutes

Another Redditor asked if they had tested if it takes “a few minutes” to rank in the top ten and gronetwork answered that they had tested it with a post titled, Google SGE Review.

gronetwork posted:

“Yes, I have created for example a post named “Google SGE Review” previously. After less than 5 minutes it was ranked 8th for Google SGE Review (no quotes). Just after Washingtonpost.com, 6 authoritative SEO websites and Google.com’s overview page for SGE (Search Generative Experience). It is ranked third for SGE Review.”

It’s true, not only does that specific post (Google SGE Review) rank in the top 10, the post started out in position 8 and it actually improved ranking, currently listed beneath the number one result for the search query “SGE Review”.

Screenshot Of Reddit Post That Ranked Within Minutes

Anecdotes Versus Anecdotes

Okay, the above is just one anecdote. But it’s a heck of an anecdote because it proves that it’s possible for a Reddit post to rank within minutes and get stuck in the top of the search results over other possibly more authoritative websites.

hankschrader79 shared that Reddit posts outrank Toyota Tacoma forums for a phrase related to mods for that truck.

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Google’s Danny Sullivan responded to that post and the entire discussion to dispute that Reddit is not always prioritized over other forums.

Danny wrote:

“Reddit is not always prioritized over other forums. [super vhs to mac adapter] I did this week, it goes Apple Support Community, MacRumors Forum and further down, there’s Reddit. I also did [kumo cloud not working setup 5ghz] recently (it’s a nightmare) and it was the Netgear community, the SmartThings Community, GreenBuildingAdvisor before Reddit. Related to that was [disable 5g airport] which has Apple Support Community above Reddit. [how to open an 8 track tape] — really, it was the YouTube videos that helped me most, but it’s the Tapeheads community that comes before Reddit.

In your example for [toyota tacoma], I don’t even get Reddit in the top results. I get Toyota, Car & Driver, Wikipedia, Toyota again, three YouTube videos from different creators (not Toyota), Edmunds, a Top Stories unit. No Reddit, which doesn’t really support the notion of always wanting to drive traffic just to Reddit.

If I guess at the more specific query you might have done, maybe [overland mods for toyota tacoma], I get a YouTube video first, then Reddit, then Tacoma World at third — not near the bottom. So yes, Reddit is higher for that query — but it’s not first. It’s also not always first. And sometimes, it’s not even showing at all.”

hankschrader79 conceded that they were generalizing when they wrote that Google always prioritized Reddit. But they also insisted that that didn’t diminish what they said is a fact that Google’s “prioritization” forum content has benefitted Reddit more than actual forums.

Why Is The Reddit Post Ranked So High?

It’s possible that Google “tested” that Reddit post in position 8 within minutes and that user interaction signals indicated to Google’s algorithms that users prefer to see that Reddit post. If that’s the case then it’s not a matter of Google showing preference to Reddit post but rather it’s users that are showing the preference and the algorithm is responding to those preferences.

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Nevertheless, an argument can be made that user preferences for Reddit can be a manifestation of Familiarity Bias. Familiarity Bias is when people show a preference for things that are familiar to them. If a person is familiar with a brand because of all the advertising they were exposed to then they may show a bias for the brand products over unfamiliar brands.

Users who are familiar with Reddit may choose Reddit because they don’t know the other sites in the search results or because they have a bias that Google ranks spammy and optimized websites and feel safer reading Reddit.

Google may be picking up on those user interaction signals that indicate a preference and satisfaction with the Reddit results but those results may simply be biases and not an indication that Reddit is trustworthy and authoritative.

Is Reddit Benefiting From A Self-Reinforcing Feedback Loop?

It may very well be that Google’s decision to prioritize user generated content may have started a self-reinforcing pattern that draws users in to Reddit through the search results and because the answers seem plausible those users start to prefer Reddit results. When they’re exposed to more Reddit posts their familiarity bias kicks in and they start to show a preference for Reddit. So what could be happening is that the users and Google’s algorithm are creating a self-reinforcing feedback loop.

Is it possible that Google’s decision to show more user generated content has kicked off a cycle where more users are exposed to Reddit which then feeds back into Google’s algorithm which in turn increases Reddit visibility, regardless of lack of expertise and authoritativeness?

Featured Image by Shutterstock/Kues

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WordPress Releases A Performance Plugin For “Near-Instant Load Times”

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WordPress speculative loading plugin

WordPress released an official plugin that adds support for a cutting edge technology called speculative loading that can help boost site performance and improve the user experience for site visitors.

Speculative Loading

Rendering means constructing the entire webpage so that it instantly displays (rendering). When your browser downloads the HTML, images, and other resources and puts it together into a webpage, that’s rendering. Prerendering is putting that webpage together (rendering it) in the background.

What this plugin does is to enable the browser to prerender the entire webpage that a user might navigate to next. The plugin does that by anticipating which webpage the user might navigate to based on where they are hovering.

Chrome lists a preference for only prerendering when there is an at least 80% probability of a user navigating to another webpage. The official Chrome support page for prerendering explains:

“Pages should only be prerendered when there is a high probability the page will be loaded by the user. This is why the Chrome address bar prerendering options only happen when there is such a high probability (greater than 80% of the time).

There is also a caveat in that same developer page that prerendering may not happen based on user settings, memory usage and other scenarios (more details below about how analytics handles prerendering).

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The Speculative Loading API solves a problem that previous solutions could not because in the past they were simply prefetching resources like JavaScript and CSS but not actually prerendering the entire webpage.

The official WordPress announcement explains it like this:

Introducing the Speculation Rules API
The Speculation Rules API is a new web API that solves the above problems. It allows defining rules to dynamically prefetch and/or prerender URLs of certain structure based on user interaction, in JSON syntax—or in other words, speculatively preload those URLs before the navigation. This API can be used, for example, to prerender any links on a page whenever the user hovers over them.”

The official WordPress page about this new functionality describes it:

“The Speculation Rules API is a new web API… It allows defining rules to dynamically prefetch and/or prerender URLs of certain structure based on user interaction, in JSON syntax—or in other words, speculatively preload those URLs before the navigation.

This API can be used, for example, to prerender any links on a page whenever the user hovers over them. Also, with the Speculation Rules API, “prerender” actually means to prerender the entire page, including running JavaScript. This can lead to near-instant load times once the user clicks on the link as the page would have most likely already been loaded in its entirety. However that is only one of the possible configurations.”

The new WordPress plugin adds support for the Speculation Rules API. The Mozilla developer pages, a great resource for HTML technical understanding describes it like this:

“The Speculation Rules API is designed to improve performance for future navigations. It targets document URLs rather than specific resource files, and so makes sense for multi-page applications (MPAs) rather than single-page applications (SPAs).

The Speculation Rules API provides an alternative to the widely-available <link rel=”prefetch”> feature and is designed to supersede the Chrome-only deprecated <link rel=”prerender”> feature. It provides many improvements over these technologies, along with a more expressive, configurable syntax for specifying which documents should be prefetched or prerendered.”

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See also: Are Websites Getting Faster? New Data Reveals Mixed Results

Performance Lab Plugin

The new plugin was developed by the official WordPress performance team which occasionally rolls out new plugins for users to test ahead of possible inclusion into the actual WordPress core. So it’s a good opportunity to be first to try out new performance technologies.

The new WordPress plugin is by default set to prerender “WordPress frontend URLs” which are pages, posts, and archive pages. How it works can be fine-tuned under the settings:

Settings > Reading > Speculative Loading

Browser Compatibility

The Speculative API is supported by Chrome 108 however the specific rules used by the new plugin require Chrome 121 or higher. Chrome 121 was released in early 2024.

Browsers that do not support will simply ignore the plugin and will have no effect on the user experience.

Check out the new Speculative Loading WordPress plugin developed by the official core WordPress performance team.

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How Analytics Handles Prerendering

A WordPress developer commented with a question asking how Analytics would handle prerendering and someone else answered that it’s up to the Analytics provider to detect a prerender and not count it as a page load or site visit.

Fortunately both Google Analytics and Google Publisher Tags (GPT) both are able to handle prerenders. The Chrome developers support page has a note about how analytics handles prerendering:

“Google Analytics handles prerender by delaying until activation by default as of September 2023, and Google Publisher Tag (GPT) made a similar change to delay triggering advertisements until activation as of November 2023.”

Possible Conflict With Ad Blocker Extensions

There are a couple things to be aware of about this plugin, aside from the fact that it’s an experimental feature that requires Chrome 121 or higher.

A comment by a WordPress plugin developer that this feature may not work with browsers that are using the uBlock Origin ad blocking browser extension.

Download the plugin:
Speculative Loading Plugin by the WordPress Performance Team

Read the announcement at WordPress
Speculative Loading in WordPress

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See also: WordPress, Wix & Squarespace Show Best CWV Rate Of Improvement

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