A brand-new study from the Pew Research Center was published today, and as always, it contains lots of relevant and actionable information for us advertisers. However, there was one finding in particular that startled us. According to the study, which examined the analytics of thousands of websites, there is a correlation between website traffic and the presence of cat pictures. As the number of cat pictures increases on a site, the volume of site traffic does as well. In fact, site traffic increases by an average of 93%!
What’s Behind This?
If that sounds too bizarre to be true, we couldn’t agree more. But the numbers don’t lie. While correlation doesn’t always mean causation, it’s still a significant trend that you shouldn’t ignore. Websites from all different industries saw that their SEO efforts were greatly improved by simply adding cat pictures to their sites and sharing those pictures on their various listings on Google, Facebook, Yelp, Angie’s List, and so on. We aren’t exactly sure what’s causing this phenomenon, but there’s been lots of speculation that one of Google’s newer updates could be behind it. A study like this hasn’t been performed before, so there’s no telling for how long this trend has existed. While our industry’s technical knowledge of the relationship between web traffic and cat pictures is still very limited, it feels safe to say definitively that cat pictures improve your SEO.
What About Dogs?
Shockingly, dog pictures had the opposite effect. According to the study, sites that contained images of dogs saw, on average, 36% less traffic than sites with no dog photos and 72% less traffic than sites with cat photos. We urge you to read the full report here. The takeaway? Find a cat picture and add it to your site today.