Are you spending money on online ads? Try split testing

If you’re investing in online ads of any kind, including pay-per-click ads and banner ads, it’s essential to use split testing to measure the effectiveness of your landing pages. Landing pages are the pages where visitors land when first visiting your site after clicking on your ad or link. With the help of split testing data, you can tweak your landing pages and improve their conversion rates, ultimately padding your bottom line and lowering advertising expenses.

It also makes sense to use split testing for landing pages that receive a steady amount of organic search engine traffic because it can help you improve your website’s overall conversion rates. It’s a good idea to promote the landing page heavily with advertising during the testing period, however, to ensure that the amount of traffic your landing page receives is statistically significant.

How It Works

Split testing, also known as A/B testing, is the process of comparing one variation of a landing page to another. Some elements of a landing page that you can test include the following:

  • Font styles and colors
  • Price changes
  • Effectiveness of discounts
  • Prices shown with or without tax
  • Headlines, body copy, and call-to-action
  • Photo and graphic usage
  • Background color
  • Location of opt-in box
  • Badges from credible organizations, such as the Better Business Bureau
  • Testimonials

Poorly designed landing pages are the leading cause of lost conversions for business websites. Your landing pages must be relevant, build trust, and make an offer your prospects can’t refuse in order to be successful. Moreover, your landing pages should have a clear call-to-action so that visitors can figure out what they are supposed to do next in a matter of seconds. If your landing page is unclear and hard to decipher, visitors will inevitably click away and head to one of your competitor’s websites instead.

Tips for Effective Split Testing

You can create two different versions of a landing page on your site, directing one half of the visitors to one page and the other half of visitors to the other page. Once you determine which landing page has the highest conversion rate, you can perform multivariate testing, or in other words, test multiple element changes against one another. The elements with the highest click-through rates should make it onto your final landing page.

Split testing is a time-consuming process, but it is well worth the effort. The more time you spend tweaking your landing page, the more money your website will make. There are several free and paid split testing programs to choose from. For example, if you use WordPress as your website’s content management system, there are plug-ins available that allow you to perform split testing with ease. Google also offers a free split testing program called Website Optimizer.

Never assume that your website doesn’t need split testing because it has a great design and compelling copy. All websites can use some improvement. Be willing to test various elements of your website’s landing pages in order to maximize conversions and sales.

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