Digital marketing is pretty nifty.
Not only does it allow you to engage with way more potential customers than traditional marketing methods, but it comes with all kinds of cool metrics to help you see how well your efforts are paying off—kind of like an investment portfolio for your overall marketing strategy.
Some of those metrics can be tricky to get the hang of, even for the ninja-est marketing ninja. Others are just plain slow to generate results, and who has the time to wait around?
But split testing? Whoa, Nelly.
Split testing is the perfect storm of marketing metrics awesomeness: fast, easy, and more reliable than Old Faithful (which, side note, is actually becoming less faithful).
Buckle up for a crash course in split testing.
Split testing is when you create two different versions of something—an ad, a form, a landing page, you get the idea—and split them between your existing traffic to see which one (A or B) performs better.
That last part is why you’ll also hear it called A/B testing.
So, say you want to test two versions of a form on your home page. Form A asks for a name and email address, while Form B asks for a name, email address and phone number.
In analyzing the results, you see that 100 people filled out Form A while only 18 people filled out Form B. A basic example, but even here you can see that Form A is the clear victor in terms of conversion.
Why is split-testing so important?
Knowing where your conversions are coming from allows you to see how different components within your PPC ad campaign are performing. This helps to define what the next steps are so you can optimize your marketing strategy even further.
This idea of developing, testing, tweaking and testing again is the driving force behind all successful marketing campaigns. Heck, it’s the driving force behind every successful invention in history.
You think Alexander Graham Bell (or Elisha Gray, depending on which history lesson you believe) invented the telephone on the first try? No way. Testing, improving and retesting is how success is achieved.
Before you make any big (and possibly costly) changes to your current marketing campaign, here are 5 key reasons to first take advantage of split testing to help minimize risk and ensure positive results every time.
1. Split testing is remarkably simple.
And chances are you can start doing it today with your current analytics tool. Both Google Analytics and Facebook Ads Manager lay out the basics to help you get started, and from there it’s just a matter of choosing your variables.
With split testing, there will always be an obvious winner. Easy-to-understand metrics are presented side by side to give you a clear comparison so you know instantly which version gives you the best results.
You can then use that data to improve future marketing campaigns instead of just tossing everything to the wall to see what sticks.
2. Your bounce rate will decrease.
You don’t need us to tell you consumer attention spans are growing shorter.
If a visitor makes it to your landing page but then quickly leaves without viewing any other pages on your site, you’re left wondering what you could have done better.
Does your content provide value? Is your call-to-action button clearly defined? Are your images visually appealing?
Split testing can help you answer all of these questions and others by testing different versions of your page to see which performs better.
3. Your conversion rate will increase.
The whole idea behind split testing is to constantly enhance different components of your marketing campaign to increase conversions and, ultimately, to boost revenue.
Say you want to create an email to encourage people to buy your natural supplements. The first option is image heavy, with minimal text and a flashing call-to-action button. The second option has just one image and includes a free smoothie recipe or a simple health tip.
Split testing the two variants can help you see which has the higher open rate—information you can use to improve future product emails and entice more people to make a purchase.
This same idea can be applied to landing pages, ads and other facets of your PPC campaign to encourage visitors to fill out a form, schedule a free consultation or anything else you would like them to do.
4. You will see fewer abandoned carts.
Cart abandonment is a big headache for eCommerce companies, who miss out on a significant chunk of sales every year due to consumers not following through with their online purchases.
What if you could reduce the problem by comparing how different variables are performing within your online shopping cart and taking steps to improve the checkout experience?
Trying different button colors, modifying where shipping costs are displayed, adding customer reviews or trust badges—all of it can easily be accomplished with split testing.
Pretty soon, your cart abandonment rate will drop and you’ll start to notice the benefit to your bottom line.
5. In the end, all of this will lead to more sales.
And that’s really the point of everything, right? Taking advantage of the actionable data provided through split testing is one of the simplest ways to hit every goal you laid out when creating your marketing strategy.
So what’s the catch?
Like most aspects of digital marketing, split testing isn’t just a one-and-done deal. Technology is constantly evolving, consumer wants and needs are changing, and what worked yesterday may not work today—which means you need to be on your game 24/7.
And hey, guess what? Solutions 8 can help.
Call, drop us a line, or stop by to learn more about how we can help you grow your business using our proven digital marketing process.
Because split-testing is only the beginning … dun-dun-DUN!