Why you need to be A/B testing

By Al  |  18 December 2015

Don’t be scared of your analytics

We love to bang on about the importance of understanding your website statistics. It’s not just about reviewing traffic numbers, but looking at the full analytics and understanding which of those numbers are important. And then adapting and making changes and retesting until you see positive results.

Probably the easiest way to start doing this – and perhaps the most effective – is email subject lines and email copy. Below are some subject lines from a famous email campaign.

Can you guess who these emails were from?

Yep, it’s from Obama’s first presidential campaign.

In this example Obama’s people tested various subject lines. The best performing subject line generated $2.1 million more than the worst performer.

The body of the email was exactly the same. That $2.1 million difference is all down to a change in subject line.

This is a great example of A/B testing. If you’re not already doing it, you would have heard about it. Basically, it’s the concept of creating two or more versions of something, sending them to market and then seeing which one worked best and using that version.

The best bit is that there are automated tools that will enable you to run these tests; for example, Campaign Monitor and Mailchimp have this functionality built in.

But even if you’re not running email campaigns yet, A/B testing is just as effective on your website. You can make great gains without a big outlay by optimising your calls to action on your website.

In our Obama example, a change in the call to action message increased the conversion rate by over 300 per cent.

But testing and watching your data is not just about emails or changing the words on your website. For one of our clients a few years back, before mobile first was a thing, we noticed they had a decent percentage of mobile traffic but their main site was not mobile optimised.

So we used this data to convince our client they needed to provide a better experience for this segment of their customers.

We produced a beautiful, optimised new version of their site, and in the 12 months following its release, they saw their mobile traffic grow by 970 per cent.

That’s the power of testing and optimising. Don’t underestimate just how important it could be to your business and your bottom line.

Written by Al  |  18 December 2015

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