How To A/B Test a Landing Page

In the last post we talked about getting lead funnels set up and why they’re important. In this post I’ll go through some of the basics behind A/B testing, also known as split testing, and how you can implement it on your site.

We all know the famous Alec Baldwin Glengarry speech about Always Be Closing. This might be right for on the ground salesmen, but online, the real mantra should be “Always Be Testing.”

Testing is what makes the difference between 1% and 10% conversion rates, and can make or break the profitability of your online marketing efforts.

The Basics of Split Testing

Before you can setup successful tests, you need to know a little bit about how split testing works and what you can do to implement it on your website.

The basic premise behind testing is really quite simple: you create different variations of your website landing page, and serve those variations randomly to different users that come to your site. Read more detailed intro here.

For example, you might create one landing page with a headline offer of “Sign up today for a free consultation!” and a second one (promoting the exact same offer) with a title of “Learn how to take your business to the next level!”

You might think you know which is better, but the point of the test is to let your audience decide for you. You pick the winner and run a new test for the next month. Do this to multiple parts of your page, and little by little you’ll build your conversion rate into an unstoppable business driver!

Common Mistakes

If you’re new to A/B testing, there are a few common mistakes you should be sure to avoid.

split testing mistakesThese are often more psychological issues and misconceptions to get over, rather than execution differences, but they can have a huge impact.
Test small: Too many businesses will “test” completely different landing pages that have almost nothing in common with each other. This might help a little, but isn’t the most effective strategy. The key is to test one aspect of each page at the time, so that you can narrow down what, exactly, is making the difference in the conversion. Try changing the headline, or moving the image from right to left to center. Keep it simple stupid.

Your opinion doesn’t matter. The other huge mistake newbies make is thinking too much about what they think is the right way to put up the page. This happens a lot with designers and passionate business owners who have strong opinions on how to describe their brand. The point of testing is to let your audience decide for you. Chances are, you think about your product way differently than they do.

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