Learn the Ins and Outs of A/B Testing From a Conversion Optimization Consultant
Inbound marketing offers enormous benefits when properly executed.? Ask a conversion optimization consultant their opinion of the top benefit and you?ll hear that it?s the flexibility of inbound marketing.?The immediateness of digital gives us the ability to quickly refine and optimize any website to increase its effectiveness. By testing various elements and monitoring visitor action, it?s possible to increase conversions (leads) and qualify leads. This process, known as A/B testing, is extremely effective.
What is A/B testing? ?How does it work, and what best practices can you use to optimizing your website today?
What Is A/B Testing?
Basically, A/B testing is pretty self-explanatory. Start with two versions of an element (A and B) and then decide how to measure success. To determine which element is more effective, insert them into your site and measure their performance?against each other using your established criteria. At the end of a predetermined period,? compare how each performed.
In this example, you may want to figure out what is negatively impacting conversions. Does the form ask for information a visitor may not want to disclose? Are visitors concerned about privacy? Is your content encouraging visitors to act? Each element can be addressed to reach an answer.
What To Test?
While every A/B test is unique, the procedure is the same. First you’ll need to establish a control and variation of an element. It?s important to test them simultaneously. Only test one element at a time and always split traffic between the two elements.
A conversion optimization consultant might choose to test:
- CTAs ? buttons, wording, size, color, and placement
- Product headlines
- Product descriptions
- Product pricing
- Premium offers
- Landing pages
By testing, it?s possible to establish which elements optimize your site for search, increase conversions, qualify leads and increase sales.
Using A/B test best practices will give you accurate results and help you to determine an individual elements effectiveness and impact.
When A/B Testing:
- Allow adequate time for establishing visitor patterns and analyzing results. Ending a test early can cost you. You may have get more meaningful results by waiting longer.
- Monitor analytics quickly in as near real-time as possible. It?s sometimes obvious which variation is working and waiting too long can cost you conversions, leads and sales.
- Keep your A/B test consistent across your website. If testing a CTA button that appears in multiple locations, leach location should use the same image, color and text. Always test only two variations of a single element at a time.
- Establish a control and then test. Always test simultaneously.
- Don?t rush. Understand the concept of ?statistical confidence. ? Too few conversions per element can give you inaccurate information.
- Don?t confuse regulars. If you?re testing a major element of your site, only test on new unique visitors. Let your regulars continue to interact with the site they are familiar with.
Ask any conversion optimization consultant and they?ll tell you that A/B testing is an excellent way to optimize your website. If you?re not sure where to begin, stop by the Marketing Matters Inbound website and take our free inbound marketing assessment.? It?ll detect any gaps in your digital marketing and identify areas for improvement. Did we mention it?s free?
Marketing Matters Inbound?is an inbound marketing firm specializing in online conversions, content?strategy, PPC campaigns and traditional media placement. Our experience in?B2B digital?marketing?and?traditional media?allows us to deliver results through a strategic media mix. We believe in?aligning and merging marketing and sales/operations for optimal return on your marketing investment.