In a recent webinar celebrating CRO day and all the best tips in the industry for helping today’s digital marketers increase their conversion, Adam Aramescu, walked us through the ins and outs of what makes A/B testing so great. For those of us at Convert, we also think A/B testing is such a valuable tool because what you intuitively think will make the best tag, call to action, or headline sometimes just doesn’t work for the majority of your visitors.
Here’s what else he had to say about why you should be using A/B testing and how to get the highest conversions out of it.
“We rely on testing to just make better decisions. People are really fascinating and interesting…and weird. It’s really hard to guess their behaviors accurately.” – Peter Kochley, founder of Upworthy.
Why A/B Testing?
For Aramescu, A/B testing is the key pathway to optimization, for any website. He points out that major players on the Internet today producing shareable content that gets a huge amount of attention across the web, like Upworthy, use A/B testing to be constantly improving and gearing their content to their users.
Peter Kochley, founder of Upworthy went so far as to say: “We rely on testing to just make better decisions. People are really fascinating and interesting…and weird. It’s really hard to guess their behaviors accurately.”
That’s why for digital marketers like Aramescu testing becomes so crucial. At the end of the day, all the psychology and design tricks you might know can’t really tune you into what your target audiences want and like. But, A/B testing can. Of course, then the question becomes how can you really create the best tests?
Aramescu sees three ways that every marketer and developer can better use A/B testing to improve conversion and in general create an engaging site:
- Transform traditional processes
- Make bold changes, and then scale them back
- Leverage the collective creativity of your team
Transforming the Traditional
“Optimization is a journey, not a destination,” Aramescu points out. He means that no one brand can sit down and create the perfect site for all of their customers in one go–the best brands and the best sites will be constantly evolving, changing, and transforming.
This continuous reinvention of the traditional, or even what people expect, creates new opportunities for engagement with old users and brand new ones, you should be constantly looking for potential areas of improvement.
By digging through analytics, surveys, and of course the creative thinking of your team members, you can start building hypotheses about where the site could potentially improve. Then through an A/B test, you can get real results about whether or not you were right.
Of course, not every test would produce incredible results, but every test can still be valuable. In fact, the tests that produce “losers” can be even more effective in helping you to understand your leads and site visitors. Think of tests as efficiency tools that will save you the time and money you might waste on using underdeveloped ideas for permanent changes.
“What I really like about A/B testing is that it relies on the creativity of humans.” -Adam Aramescu
Think Big with Your Experiments
A/B testing is built around the idea of iterations, trying out different versions of essentially the same thing. However, with each experiment you will want to escape the mindset that you are only making a new iteration of the same thing. Your experiments should be bold and reaching for new heights in creativity.
A/B testing relies on the creativity of humans, a test is the opportunity to use all your resources.
Too often, sites will simply alter colors or placement of content. But, there has already been a lot of research on optimal colors and page design, so why waste the valuable data a test will produce on changing just one button? Your test can and should be the opportunity to try out a new payment option or a completely new service.
How many conversions could you get if you add a new method for installment payments or free trials? How many conversions could you get if you started offering a consultation service? These are the questions that are so hard to answer concretely, until you try. If an idea proves too bold, you can start to scale it back, but it’s best to really go for the best possible results the first time around.
Leverage Collective Creativity
Speaking of all those creative minds you have on your team, A/B tests are not only an opportunity to optimize your site, but the way your team functions. A/B test results produce a tremendous amount of data, and keeping that information within the leadership stifles the potential for new ideas.
Keeping your team close to the data that is available will help you to discover new ideas and hypotheses for new tests, which will then continue to create new, better opportunities. Think of tests as the trial and error tool that will improve not just your site, but the way you communicate with your team and generate new possibilities.
When you start to optimize your team’s communication, make bolder decisions, and keep these processes running continuously, you will be consistently testing and improving your organization and your website. That’s how the master of conversion rate optimization use A/B testing to deliver dynamic sites that consistently grab the attention of new and familiar users.