Demystifying A/B Testing
The A/B Testing Fairy Tale & Finding Your Landing Page Optimization Unicorn
There is a lot of information regarding Landing Page Optimization and methods/actions you can take to increase conversions in an AdWords PPC campaign. The most common methodology is to conduct a simple test of two different landing pages and track the performance of each page. Hence, the name, A/B testing. We definitely want to talk about how to A/B test, but, more importantly, we want to address common mistakes made in A/B Testing.
Common Mistakes in A/B Testing
First, A/B testing is not as easy as ABC. It is, in fact, much more complex. A common mistake made in A/B testing is that a website owner doesn’t benchmark their data through Google Analytics. A benchmark documents initial performance of Page A or Page B. A clear benchmark report is the first course of action to test things properly.
Second, it is always good to start by testing similar pages with minimal differences to determine possible Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) in the data. Most pages have text on them and simple headlines, but adding visual elements will not get you to PPC Conversion Nirvana. Most landing page optimization efforts are a simple rearranging of components and small percentage change that is often insignificant. If you want to achieve success, or grab the horn of the unicorn, you will have to make major changes to pages which can lead to 2-5 times improvement on the original benchmarked page quality.
How to Effectively Use A/B Testing
We recommend that, instead of focusing on image optimization and headline text optimization, you try different tests on various forms of media. These include video or some interactive component to the page. Calls-to-Action (CTAs) are important, but changing the tone between page A and B may be more significant in the conversion aspect of your pages.
Pages that educate and propose how you will solve the patient’s issue are more important than the placement or color of a CTA button or ad copy. Proposing things like “How I Can Help You” or “Unlike Any Other Service” as CTAs in ad copy can be highly effective. This is because most of your competitors will be pushing their service and not the solution.
Testimonials and Trust Elements
Testimonials and Credibility Symbols are great, but it is always helpful to test which ones are better. Does an end user find a Google+ Review more useful than a Yelp testimonial? Does a video about a service work better than a video about you or your company/organization? The glitter trail of end user data on video engagement or site referrals from Analytics can really make a difference in conversions as opposed to the normal Headline 1 versus Headline 2 trap people fall into.
Lastly, try targeting specific locations and then move on to targeting broader locations. In our experience, if most data targets a specific city in PPC Landing Pages, the end user may feel claustrophobic. We recommend reaching out to different target areas as people live, work, and play in a variety of locations.
In short, make significant changes to similar and very visual rich information to see major changes in the performance of your AdWords PPC campaigns. Also, test often and early. Soon your landing pages will be riding on rainbows and being chased by those who really believe in Unicorns.
If you have questions about A/B testing or are interested in a fully managed AdWords campaign for your practice, call 1-800-IMATRIX today.
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