More versions of the same marketing element? More chances of winning! Find out which version works best with the help of this test! [Thursdays: FYO!]
Imagine you’re about to publish new content on your business’ website.
Your goals are to generate a higher open rate for your article, drive more traffic to your site, and increase your sales conversion rate.
However, as you finalize the article, you realize you’re not sure if your headline is appealing enough for your target market to click.
What’s your next step?
Do you just ignore your intuition and still publish the article using the headline?
Or… do you make another headline for the same article and look for target market data to help you identify which headline is better?
If your answer is the latter, this marketing tool can help you with that!
A/B testing is the method of “putting to a vote one (version) against the other,” or comparing two versions of a web page, email, or other marketing assets to identify which performs better. It is one of the most common ways to collect target market information, particularly in the online setting.
This method dates back to the 1920s when British statistician and biologist Ronald Fisher discovered the important principles behind A/B testing and randomized controlled experiments.
Fisher ran agricultural experiments in order to answer the question, “What if I put more fertilizer on this land?”
This principle of gathering scientific data persisted and in the early 1950s, scientists began using A/B testing to run clinical trials in medicine.
In the 1960s and 1970s, the concept of A/B testing was also adapted by marketers to evaluate direct response campaigns, such as answering the question, “Would a postcard or a letter to target customers result in more sales?”
According to Kaiser Fung, founder of the Applied Analytics Program at Columbia University, the popularity of the method has risen as managers and marketers realize that the online environment can help them gather information about what makes people click their article, buy their products, or register to their website.
As a business owner or marketer, you can conduct A/B testing on things like:
- CTA (call-to-action) buttons
- Email subject lines
- Product descriptions
- Media mentions
- Landing pages
Why do you need to do an A/B test for your business?
A/B testing lets you know what words, phrases, images, testimonials, and other online marketing elements work best for your brand.
Always remember that even the simplest changes can make a huge impact on your brand’s sales conversion and engagement rates.
In fact, one test conducted by website optimization company Crazy Egg found that a red CTA button outperformed a green button by 21% based on 2,000 page visits.
If such a minor change can get people to click your CTA button, that means changes on other elements on your business’ website, email, or social media profiles can also yield desirable results in sales conversions, online traffic, and other metrics.
Here are other benefits of using an A/B test for your business:
- It helps improve content.
As a business owner or marketer, you want to produce content that is valuable for your target market in order for them to engage with your ad, website, email, etc.
A/B testing your marketing materials gives you a better idea of what your target market likes or finds relevant to their daily lives.
Through the results, you’ll create a more relatable and engaging content that will help establish your brand’s credibility and your target market’s trust.
- It reduces bounce rates.
Bounce rate is the percentage of people who visit your website and leave without viewing other pages of your site or making a transaction with your brand.
Using the A/B test, you can create a new version of your website’s landing page (or modify other elements on your website) and test it against the current one you’re using to identify which version gets a higher engagement rate.
By doing so, you encourage your target market to browse longer on your brand’s website. The longer they stay on your site, the more online traffic and engagement will be generated on your site. The more traffic and engagement is generated, the more likely your website will rank high on search engine results!
- It increases sales conversion rates.
One of the ways to increase your brand’s sales conversion rate is to create an ad or copy that is appealing and convincing for your target market to buy your products.
In order to know which type of ad creative or copy performs better, you have to conduct an A/B test. Although it may seem like more work to do because you’re creating different versions, identifying a sure-fire way to connect with your target market will yield better results for your brand.
- It provides quick results.
Another benefit of A/B testing is it gives you quick results about what is working for your brand and what is not.
Even if you’re just testing on a relatively small sample size, an A/B test will provide results that will help you make better decisions and focus on matters that are important to your business.
At Valens, we conduct A/B testing on the subject lines and content that we use for our EDM (Electronic Direct Mail) campaigns.
We also test our landing pages, using the results as a guide on how we should improve the layout and change other elements for it to be appealing to our target readers and visitors.
An example of another business that uses A/B testing is the Canadian software company Unbounce.
Unbounce wanted to know what its online visitors would prefer to do in order to get a copy of its eBook titled, “The Noob Guide to Online Marketing”―give their email address or just tweet about the eBook.
To know which between the two would yield better results, the company created two versions of its landing page. On the first version, Unbounce asked its visitors to give their email address in exchange for the eBook.
On the second version, Unbounce did not change the content but instead of asking for users’ email addresses, the company only asked them to tweet about its product in exchange for the eBook.
The results of the A/B test showed that more people preferred giving out their email address. After using the first version as the company’s official landing page, Unbounce recorded a 24% lift in its sales conversion rates.
Do you see how A/B testing helps?
Take note that A/B testing is just one of the many ways to collect information from online users.
There are other kinds of experiments and tests that will offer more accurate results for your business, but an A/B test is a great way for you to gain a quick understanding on the things that appeal more to your target market.
Keep in mind that a single A/B test will not seal the deal. As a business owner or marketer, you should make it a habit to conduct these tests every once in a while in order for you to maximize your marketing campaigns and strategies.
Don’t underestimate the power of A/B testing!
It may just be a simple test, but when done properly, it will provide a lot of benefits for you and your brand.
About The Dynamic Marketing Communiqué’s
“Thursdays: FYO! Find You Optimization”
Why should you stop thinking SEO and start thinking FYO?
We’re not saying that you should abandon Search Engine Optimization (SEO).
Don’t get us wrong, of course, we know this is something very important, especially in today’s digital marketing age.
The internet landscape is vast, and a world of its own. You really need to distinguish yourself and make your brand/company/website known and easily searchable.
Better yet, get to the top of page one for Top Results on Google or any other search engine.
However, what is the purpose of SEO? It’s that customers Find You!
That’s what matters. So, while SEO is one factor of FYO… it really is only one, and we ought not to abandon all the myriad of ways digitally and offline for improving your FYO.
How can we look at this from a different and better perspective?
Let’s say you have it in the bag! You and your team are experts in SEO. Awesome. But did you ever wonder what else you could do to push it further and give your SEO skills a boost?
FYO! Find You Optimization!
You need your target audience to FIND YOU—your brand, product, service, or offer. This is SEO plus other tools that increase visibility online (and offline).
Every Thursday, we publish content on how you can get your target market to find you, beyond the typical “type and search.” There are other things you can do along with your SEO to give your online advertising process a boost.
Try considering other tactics beyond it—WOMO (Word Of Mouth Optimization), RO (Referral Optimization), and “All-Other-Means-Of-Getting-Your-Target-Market-To-Find-You” Optimization (AOMOGYTMTFY, if you’d like a long acronym).
Part of a great marketing strategy is knowing how to adapt new methods and make use of different types of marketing and promotion that best fit your business goals and which give you the results you want.
Hope you’ve found this week’s insights interesting and helpful.
Stay tuned for next Thursday’s FYO!
Head of Marketing
Valens Dynamic Marketing Capabilities
Powered by Valens Research