A Guide to A/B Testing Your Landing Pages
- As the storefront of any online business, landing pages are full of opportunities for A/B testing.
- Website owners embarking on A/B testing should know that it doesn’t have to be an expensive endeavour, and there is a lot of help out there for newbies.
- Don’t make the mistake of A/B testing too many things at once or forgetting the importance of mobile users.
In digital marketing, the ability to make data-driven decisions is paramount. A/B testing, a simple yet powerful technique, empowers marketers to optimise their website landing pages based on data from real user interactions.
By presenting two or more variations of a page to users and measuring their responses, businesses can identify which version drives the most conversions, be it sign-ups, sales, or any other desired action.
While the concept of A/B testing might sound technical, its core principle is rooted in understanding and catering to the user’s preferences. In a previous article, we delved deep into the mechanics of conducting A/B tests.
In this article, we’ll focus on its application, specifically for website landing pages. Landing pages serve as the digital storefront for many businesses, making their optimisation crucial for success. Through A/B testing, marketers can ensure that these pages not only capture attention but also drive action.
Keep reading as we explore the nuances of A/B testing for landing pages, from the elements to test to the tool that can aid the process.
What parts of my landing page should I A/B test?
Landing pages are the gateway to a user’s journey on a website. Their design, content, and layout play a pivotal role in determining whether a visitor will take the desired action or leave. A/B testing these elements can provide invaluable insights into user preferences and behaviours. But which ones should you test?
Here are some crucial elements to consider:
Headings are the first thing a visitor often reads, so they can make or break a user’s interest. Testing different phrasings, tones, or lengths can reveal what captures attention and resonates with your audience.
For instance, a heading that poses a question might engage users more than a declarative statement. Subheadings, while secondary, provide additional context and can further pique interest or offer clarity.
Call-to-action (CTA) buttons
These are the crux of most landing pages, guiding users towards a specific action, be it signing up to a mailing list, purchasing a product, or downloading a freebie.
Testing variations in the wording, colour, size, or placement of CTA buttons can significantly impact conversion rates. For example, a CTA that says, “Get Started Now” might be more compelling than a simple “Sign Up.”
Images and videos
Visual elements can either enhance or detract from a user’s experience. Testing different images or videos can determine which visuals resonate most. For landing pages, it’s essential that these visuals align with the product or service being offered. A high-quality product image or a brief explainer video can provide clarity and boost trust.
Layout and design
The arrangement of elements on a landing page can influence how users navigate and interact with it.
Testing different layouts can reveal which designs are most intuitive and engaging. For instance, a two-column layout might work better for some content, while a single, centred column might be more effective for others.
Try out different layouts to find out which is most effective for your unique target customers.
Testimonials and reviews
Authentic feedback can bolster credibility and trust. However, their placement, design, and even the number displayed can influence their effectiveness. Testing variations can determine the optimal way to showcase these endorsements.
Is it more effective to include photos of the people giving reviews? Or does a simple approach gain more traction? You’ll be able to figure out these questions with your tests.
Often used to capture user information, the design of forms can impact their completion rates. Testing different field lengths, types, or even the wording of prompts can optimise user engagement.
For instance, a shorter form might increase sign-ups, but a longer form might capture more detailed and valuable information. It’s commonly known that long and complicated forms have a higher exit rate, but are the customers who remain more valuable?
Offers and promotions
Special deals or limited-time offers can be enticing. However, their presentation matters. Testing different wordings, designs, colours, or even countdown timers can determine which promotions drive the most conversions.
Each element on a landing page serves a purpose, guiding the user towards a desired outcome. Through A/B testing, marketers can fine-tune these elements, ensuring they work harmoniously to captivate and convert visitors.
Though there are several different things you could test, don’t be tempted to test them all at once. Keep reading to learn more about A/B testing effectively.
What to avoid when A/B testing your landing pages
A/B testing, while invaluable, is not without its pitfalls. Avoiding common mistakes can be the difference between a successful test and a misleading one.
Here are some frequent missteps to be wary of:
Testing too many elements at once
While it’s tempting to overhaul an entire landing page and test multiple changes simultaneously, this can muddle the results.
If you alter several elements and see a boost in conversions, it’s impossible to pinpoint which specific change led to differences in user behaviour. Instead, focus on one or two key elements at a time to ensure your results are clear.
Ignoring mobile users or different screen sizes
In today’s digital world, users access websites from a wide range of devices, from desktops and watches to tablets and smartphones. Neglecting to test landing pages across different screen sizes can lead to skewed results.
A change that works well on a desktop might not translate effectively on a mobile device. So, you’ll need to ensure your tests are comprehensive, taking into account the diverse ways users interact with your site.
Neglecting to analyse results properly
Once a test concludes, the work isn’t over. Properly analysing the results is crucial. It’s not just about identifying which version performed better but understanding why. Dive deep into the data, considering factors like user demographics and behaviour patterns, to glean actionable insights.
By sidestepping these common errors, marketers can ensure their A/B tests are both effective and informative. But how can you get extra assistance with your tests if you’ve never used them before?
How to A/B test for the first time
A/B testing, while powerful, can be complex. If you’re new to the process and unsure about how successful you’ll be, it’s time to seek assistance.
Here are a few ways you can get the extra help you need:
Utilise online tools
Google Optimize has helped website owners with their A/B testing for the last five years. Unfortunately, this amazing tool is being sunset in September 2023.
However, users can still access all of the same features through Google Analytics 4, as it will be using integrations from AB Tasty, Optimizely, and VWO to provide a new comprehensive tool.
This free tool allows you to seamlessly leverage pre-existing website data and design impactful tests. Its user-friendly interface ensures that even beginners can set up and analyse tests effectively. Plus, it’s free, so your A/B tests don’t have to cost a fortune.
Your team will be crucial at every stage of the A/B testing process. Consider the following list of professionals; you might like to contract their help for the testing period to ensure they’re executed effectively:
- A UX designer can help design intuitive and user-friendly landing page variations.
- A data analyst is essential for interpreting test results as they can provide insights into user behaviour and preferences.
- A digital marketing specialist can guide the overall strategy, ensuring that tests align with your business’s marketing goals.
- A web developer can help with more technical tests, assisting in implementing and troubleshooting variations.
Join workshops, webinars, and online communities
Many organisations and platforms offer training sessions on A/B testing, as well as communities of business owners with similar goals. Getting involved in webinars and workshops (online or in-person) can provide hands-on experience and insights from industry experts, as well as forge positive business connections.
In addition, platforms like Reddit, Stack Exchange, and other specialised forums host a range of active communities that discuss A/B testing methods, as well as a variety of other digital dilemmas. Engaging in these can provide peer support, feedback, new ideas, and networking opportunities.
A/B testing doesn’t have to be expensive
Remember, while A/B testing can be done independently, collaboration and external input often lead to more refined, effective tests. Don’t hesitate to seek help when you need to, and remember that getting assistance with A/B tests doesn’t have to break the bank.
A/B testing, once a novel concept, has now become a staple in the digital marketer’s toolkit. While our tips will tide you over for the foreseeable future, keep an eye out for any exciting changes to the world of A/B testing.
While it currently relies on manual input, we may see AI taking a more active role in the future. Plus, advancements in data analytics suggest that A/B testing could pave the way for hyper-personalised user experiences.
As technologies keep advancing, A/B testing will continue to play a pivotal role in digital optimisation. Nevertheless, it remains a crucial way to connect with audiences in the present day.