5-letter-words.com is an online word finder dedicated to listing – you guessed it, 5 letter words! Inspired by a casual conversation with his boss on the simplicity of trending word puzzles, Robert Handel, the site’s founder, embarked on a mission to create a user friendly word game companion - an innovative 5 letter word finder designed to uncover the alternative solutions hidden within each new daily word challenge. 5-letter-words.com was born in just 3 short days, but now amasses over 1 million monthly pageviews, with regular users from popular word games such as Wordle and Subway Rush.
The decision to transition to Publift arose from a series of challenges encountered with a previous Google Certified Publishing Partner (GCPP) network.
In particular, during the last 6 months of FY23, 5-letter-words.com faced:
- A considerable decline in revenue compared to industry ad revenue indexes, and
- A considerable decline in net revenue, despite traffic growing at a reasonable rate.
Delving deeper into his experience, Robert identified additional issues, including:
- Ad load impacting page load times, and
- Intermittent browser crashes on mobile, prompting the removal of ads from mobile browsers, and a subsequent loss in revenue.
Recognising the need for change, Robert reached out to Publift to address these challenges and explore a more effective ad solution.
Our goal with 5-letter-words.com was to then deliver an ad experience that not only improved page performance, but also resulted in a noticeable increase in site revenue.
Our team got straight to work analyzing the initial setup of 5-letter-words.com. The site had approximately 18 ads serving on the homepage alone. Being a tool site, having healthy Core Web Vitals is imperative to ensuring the site ranks well in a highly competitive environment. In this instance, the site’s mobile health scores were failing.
To increase the site’s revenue, our dedicated solution consultant:
- Conducted an analysis to identify low and high performing ad units. We culled the poor units, while keeping the remaining high performers, and
- Proposed an interscroller unit for the mobile version of the site, capitalising on the 84% of mobile traffic 5-letter-words.com attracted.
From a user experience perspective, we:
- Proposed a shift in site layout to showcase more informative content.
- Implemented a minimum div height for above the fold ad units to avoid cumulative layout shift (CLS) issues, and
- Implemented lazy loading for ad units below the fold.
We were able to drastically cut down the number of ad units from 18 to 9.
With fewer ad units, we were able to improve overall site speed and boost performance in ad revenue.
Key results after 1 month of working with Publift:
- An average 40% increase in weekly page RPM
- An average 35% uplift in weekly revenue
- A 49% uplift in revenue within a month
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