If you manage a website, you probably have a goal in mind with each communication activity. But how can you be sure of what route to take? Surely with AB tests.
These are a user experience research methodology that can give you an answer to the most important of all questions: what works and what not in your marketing strategy?
In pochi punti:
- 1 What is an AB testing?
- 2 What can you use AB tests for?
- 3 Why you should test your strategy
- 4 How does AB testing work?
- 5 A practical example
- 6 How to analyze your conversion rate
- 7 The secret of a good marketer
- 8 AB tests vs. split tests
- 9 Champion, challenger and variation
- 10 What elements can you use for AB tests?
- 11 AB tests results
- 12 Conclusion
What is an AB testing?
Borrowed from statistics, this method is a reliable way of comparing two variants. A and B are two different variants of the same item. For example, in email marketing they can be two different objects for your email.
Therefore, you can conduct ab tests with a lot of different variants and analyze which one is working better. This will lead you to a better conversion rate according to your final goal.
What can you use AB tests for?
In marketing, and especially digital marketing, you could lose a lot of money simply by implementing the wrong strategy. AB tests are the perfect solution for an in-depth research of what works and what not.
So, you can apply them to pretty much every step of your marketing strategy, depending on your current problem. Do your customers leave the basket without finalizing their purchase? Or maybe do you need better leads to turn into loyal clients? Does your average user opt out of your newsletter too frequently?
A/B testing will help you understand why this happens and how to prevent it.
Why you should test your strategy
You can understand if your marketing campaign is wrong in some ways looking at your conversion rate.
When you implement your digital marketing strategy, you usually have a clear goal in mind. For instance, increasing your newsletter members; selling more products; creating more engagement with your content.
If this is not happening, you need to re-evaluate your messages and AB tests are an easy and measurable way to do so.
How does AB testing work?
You have two variants (A and B) and present different segments of your audience with one or the other. Therefore, the most important phase of this method is a detailed and precise segmentation of your users.
Then you should choose what to vary in each target group. It can be the object of your e-mail if you want more people to open it, of instance. Or maybe you can change your call to action and analyze which one displays the higher conversion rate.
Think of this strategy as a competition. AB tests are a challenge between two items: one of them will prove to be better than the other.
A practical example
Let’s say you want more people to reach your landing page after reading an email from your company. Firstly, you need to split your audience in two groups. This can be done by a gender, age or geographic criterion, just to name a few.
Secondly, you need to come up with two different call to actions to include in your email. Try to play with words, fonts, placement in the email layout. Then you can send two different messages to the members of your two target groups.
This is an AB testing: you now have two communications and can compare the results.
How to analyze your conversion rate
You can compare the results of your AB tests by analyzing the conversion rate of each email. Which one persuaded more users to click on your landing page?
This AB testing can obviously be conducted more than once. Every single detail of an email marketing campaign can be tested out and chosen accordingly with the best results of your split test.
The secret of a good marketer
The best email marketes out there are constantly experimenting with AB tests. They are a simple yet effective way to understand the best practices in a constantly evolving world.
You know your audience is going to grow, change its habits, use new social media and platforms and react differently to your content. With A/B testing, you can monitor your improvement or pinpoint every little mistake in your strategy and eliminate it accordingly.
AB tests vs. split tests
Some people think of them as the same method, but these two types of tests are slightly different.
While A/B testing consists in changing just one element (an image, one word, the color of a button), split tests compare two completely different communications.
In email marketing, this means having two different layout for your newsletter; or maybe changing the landing page or the check-out process on an e-commerce website.
Champion, challenger and variation
These are three keywords for AB tests. But what do they mean?
- A champion is your marketing asset. It can be the landing page, the email layout, the facebook ad that has perfomed well in the past.
- A challenger is the new form you pit against the champion. A different landing page, a new ad copy, another button to click on. Champion and challenger are the A and B that will be compared in your test.
- The variation is the change that performs better in an AB testing, giving you the right path to choose for improving your conversion rates.
What elements can you use for AB tests?
To sum up, you can really use every item in your digital marketing startegy to conduct an AB testing. The most important element to monitor are copies and headlines; images; and call to actions.
On an e-commerce site, you can try varying the product descriptions or their positions inside the menu.
AB tests results
What is, in conclusion, the reason why you should implement AB tests in your marketing strategy? Here are some of the most important:
- increase your leads;
- sell more;
- reduce the bounce rate;
- solve customers’ problems with your website;
- improve your email and website aesthetic appeal;
- increase your conversion rates with the slightest cost.
Every website can benefit from conducting AB tests regularly. From the giant marketers to the smaller blogger, your goal in digital marketing can be certainly improved with a little effort.
If you work in the digital marketing field, or need to increase some aspects of your startegy, AB tests are the answer. You can easily conduct them yourself or involve an email marketing platform.