No BS Series: Focus on Marketing Metrics – What is split testing anyways?
Well we all work very hard on formatting our message and targeting the correct audience, but how do we know how effective our message is coming across. We really don’t very well whether “Capitalizing The First Letter Of Every Word” is better than adding “Bold to the entire message“.
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Well we should be paying close attention to all these differences and their effectiveness on being able to help our target market to take action on our message. This is where “Split Testing”, also know as A?B testing comes into play. Split testing is as defined by wikepedia is
“A/B testing, split testing or bucket testing is a method of marketing testing by which a baseline control sample is compared to a variety of single-variable test samples in order to improve response or conversion rates. A classic direct mail tactic, this method has been recently adopted within the interactive space to test tactics such as banner ads, emails, landing pages or even entire websites. For instance, on an e-commerce website the purchase funnel is typically a good candidate for A/B testing, as even marginal improvements in drop-off rates can represent a lot of additional sales.”
This is just a fancy way of saying we need to try different versions of website, landing or e-mail, basically anything you share with you target market. Small changes in your copy or message, layout or format, photos or color scheme used can create improvements in your conversion rates.
The bottom line is by testing what works best it will allow you to better determine how to spend your advertising budget to get the most bang for the buck. This will translate into more sales, leads and eventually more representatives in your down-line.
When split testing we must ensure that we chose a test sample that is sufficiently large enough to show differences that are not affected by statistical anomalies. This just means when you compare your results make sure the number of responses received is large enough to validate what you are trying to prove. Such a test size of a 10 to 20 may be effective in determining how effective an e-mail campaign delivers when your typical audience is 2000 mailings.
A few examples of what you can vary is your call to action. In the control or baseline sample you may use your existing call to action. In your split test sample you may add a sense of urgency to your call to action by putting a time limit or a limit the number copies available. Then measure the effectiveness of the changes to the call to action.
You may also test how many copies of your product sell at different price points. You may find some surprising results. You may think that lower prices would lead to more sales and revenue. But in split testing results may show that even though you only converted 50% less prospects by tripping your price, you actually increased revenue by 50%.
So you shouldn’t just leave it to chance that you have the best set-up for the different aspects of your marketing funnel, you should use split testing to verify your results. Once you have dialed in to the perfect combination of copy, format, images, etc., then you can be assure that you’re getting the most out of your marketing efforts.
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