A/B testing or split testing as it is commonly known is a trial and error test for performance of a website or app. Developers will create two versions of the digital entity. Each of the two versions are given randomly to a number of users. The goal is to determine which of the two versions perform well in terms of conversion rates for a specific conversion goal.
The data from user interaction is interpreted using statistical analysis.
Sometimes the two variants may not differ all that much and sometimes the second version may be a completely redesigned version of the first. The first version is called the control and the second version is called the variation. Roughly half of the users will be given access to the control and the other half will be given access to the variation. Factors like engagement, conversion rates, and interaction are measured. Positive and negative effects of each version is measured against each other to determine the webpage version that is likely to bring in increased profitable conversions.
Why is A/B testing important?
A/B testing is important for a number of reasons. Let us take a look at some of them.
Bounce rates are lowered
A bounce is when a visitor exits a website after viewing only a single webpage or when a user spends less than the intended session time on the website. A user does not spend any time reading or reviewing the content in your website. High bounce rates can have a negative impact on websites, especially the ones that have just been created. It can affect organic search rankings which can lead to reduced traffic.
In order to understand why bounce rates are high, you can create a second version of your website with changes in elements you think are distracting or unappealing to your users and then subject both versions for A/B testing
A/B testing can help you determine the combination of elements that reduces bounce rates and leads to conversions.
You can create content that engages
A/B testing is a scientific way to get to the heart of what users want from you. This in turn helps you to create content that is engaging. You can decide what keeps your visitors on your website. Is it visual content like infographics and vivid images or is it textual content like lengthy articles. You can mix and match and narrow down the content that engages your visitors the most.
You can test almost anything using A/B testing
A website can exhibit a number of elements in a dozen different ways. For instance, a call-to-action can be represented as text or as a pop-up. Headlines can be written in several different fonts. Logos can be of different sizes, color contrasts, and so on.
A/B testing allows you to test different versions of your website with different versions of any element from CTAs to logos and testimonials. At the end of A/B testing, you latch on to what strikes the best with your users.
You can get proven, scientific results that are backed up by numbers
Since A/B testing is a very methodical form of testing based on statistical analysis, it can give you clear cut data on website performances. You get factual results that can easily help you determine a winning website and a poorly performing website. The data is straightforward and can be used reliably to make changes on your website.
You can measure the effectiveness of your ads
The primary goal of ads is to earn you the maximum number of clicks and conversions. So, an ad that does not generate enough click throughs is a waste of space. You need to figure out why your ad is not performing as you thought it would. A/B testing can help you create different versions of your website with different variations of the ad and help you determine which type of ad gets you the greatest number of clicks.
You can improve SEO
Since A/B testing is all about finding which version of your website sits well with users, it is no surprise that A/B testing can improve your search engine rankings. This is because A/B testing allows you to constantly make changes to the content and design of your website in order to enhance user experience. A/B testing helps you to optimize your webpages so that you rank better in the search engine results pages.
You can track unique customers
A/B testing is an effective way to keep track of how your website is performing with users. It also helps you track unique visitors so that you develop an idea of how your website is reaching out to new customers. Understanding your unique customers can open up new marketing opportunities. You can redesign your website to incorporate changes that appeal to a wider audience.
You don’t need to worry about risks
Major revisions in your website can be costly if you are going in for a direct implementation. A/B testing saves you from the risks of direct implementation of new changes. You can use A/B testing to first test how new changes sit with your existing customers. You can also measure whether the latest changes are bringing new customers. Once you have all the appropriate dara, it is easier to analyze the risk factor and then make an informed decision about whether or not to move forward with the latest changes you have made to your website.
You can apply the data to different areas of marketing
The data obtained from A/B testing is not limited just to measuring performance. When you have a product to market and sell, the information gleaned from A/B testing can be applied to various areas of your marketing strategy. A/B testing has very broad applications if used effectively and strategically.
You can improve your value propositions
When you are trying to market a product, your value proposition holds a lot of importance. Unless you come up with a value proposition or a message that strikes the right chord with your users, your marketing campaign is likely to suffer. A/B testing is an effective way to test your value propositions. You don’t need to rely on your gut or your copy writer’s knack to see whether a value proposition will be a success with your customers. Simply use A/B testing to get valid data on how users are reacting to your message. You can study what it is about your value proposition that is attracting customers and build on it to give your customers exactly what they are looking for.