A/B testing consists of having two versions of whatever you’re testing that are very slightly different. You then divide the traffic between the two versions and see which one converts at a higher rate. It seems simple enough but most marketers don’t even do it, even though it has shown time and again that website owners who conduct proper A/B testing experience higher conversions and a higher return on investment than those who don’t.
Create the Marketing Collateral
Whether it’s a sales page, newsletter landing page or something else entirely, create the designs in twos. You want to create two landing pages (A and B) that are slightly different. For example, perhaps each page has a different image on it, or a different headline, or perhaps a different buy/call to action button.
Upload the Pages to Your Site
You’ll need the URLs of the pages that you want to test. Make sure when you collect the URLs that you name each test page so that you know which one each URL is assigned to. Keep track of it all to ensure that you don’t get mixed up, so that your results will turn out accurately.
Obviously, your goal is to make more money and increase your return on investment. But, you will have many different conversion goals, such as newsletter sign-ups, freebie downloads, sales and more. Choose an “experimental objective” within Google Analytics to create your goals. You can find this under Behavior and Experiments. Just click “Create Experience” to get started.
Name Your Experiment
Choose names for your experiments so that you can identify which page is working best during the testing. Once you've done this you can set your goals under “objectives for this experiment”. You have several choices such as AdSense, ecommerce, and many other goal metrics. Choose the best one for your test.
Run the Test
Once you have it all set up and uploaded, you can let it run. Keep checking up on your statistics as often as you can; at first you may want to do it daily, then maybe weekly. Let it run long enough that you’re positive on which test, A or B, worked better.
Pick the Best Conversion Page
Remember that conversions and clicks are nice but money is the point. There are always possibilities that the most clicked and trafficked page is not the one that makes the most money. Therefore, it’s imperative to run the experiment long enough with enough variables to notice. For example, don’t sign people up for the same list even if the series is the same; that way you know which list is filled with either A or B respondents.
When you know what your goals are, and test to find out how accurate you have been designing sales pages and landing pages for your audience, you’ll soon get better at converting and making more money. Testing with Google Analytics is free and well worth it.