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How to implement an effective A/B test | Bitlab

How to implement an effective A/B test

by Esther Tyreman / Website Design

Many businesses are analysing their websites performance on a monthly basis and that is a great way to understand how successful it is or what pages your visitors are sending the most time on but what your analytics can’t tell you is what changes you can make to you website to make it more effective and that’s where A/B testing comes into play.

A/B testing is where you create two versions of the same page and show each version to half of your visitors. You can then compare which page has performed the best and use this on your website. The key to A/B testing success is to make the difference between the two pages as subtle as possible; you should only make one change. For example, if you want to find out how effective the size of your headline text is, then only change this and keep everything else the same. By doing so, you can know that the reason one page is performing better than the other is because of the size of the text.

There are lots of aspects of your website that you can change, from your page layout or colour scheme to your call-to-action placement or pricing option design. You can fine tune every area of your website to be a conversion machine. It’s important to approach A/B testing in a methodical way, this will avoid your website becoming disorganised an ineffective.

Remember your goals and consider how your website can help you achieve them. Are you looking to boost sales, increase email sign-ups or encourage downloads? View your website as a visitor and discover how your website encourages or prevents visitors from doing this. You may find that your sign-up forms are too difficult or lengthy, is your call-to-action unclear or are your downloads too difficult to find?

Now that you have decided on your goals and you understand the obstacles that your visitors face, you have to decide what improvements you want to enforce. If no one is downloading your resources, what changes can you make on that page? This opens up a huge list of options, from small changes like colour scheme to bigger changes like page layout. Prioritise these changes in order of weakest areas. Don’t forget to only test one area at a time, that way you can keep track of which changes have an impact.

Your changes should be inventive, exchanging dull text for another lot of boring content won’t do the trick, and you need to capture the attention of your audience. Take a look at your competitors and see what they are doing to keep their website exciting. Is it the use of creative content like GIF’s or infographics or is it animation? Be creative, but keep it relevant. Don’t go overboard with the creativity as your website may become distracting.

After you have run a successful A/B test you will gain an in-depth understanding of the changes that you need to make to appeal to your audience. Begin by changing the weakest points of your site and monitor your website’s performance, you can then make adjustments to the smaller aspects of your site to optimise it.

If A/B testing fills you with dread or you just don’t know where to start, then Bitlab can help. Our team of professionals take the time to understand your business and where you want to be. We can implement A/B testing to get the best from your website. If you want to find out how we can help you, contact us on 0191 4350 030, use our online contact form or email info@bitlab.co.uk.

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