Never stop testing and your company will never stop improving.
Why should you test?
We test things on a daily basis. We try out a new route to work, we go for a test drive before purchasing a car, we try a new brand of cereals, or we test different hairstyles before picking the right look. We are constantly testing so that we can find the best option for ourselves, the one that works best and that we prefer. This is exactly what happens with a business, whether big or small. You test a campaign, you test a website or you test your social media. You want to see how your audience reacts to what you do, so as to find the strategy that works best for your company.
The easiest way to find out whether something works or doesn’t work for your business is through A/B testing. This type of testing will provide you with the information you need to have in order to understand how you should go about things. For instance, A/B testing will help you decide which emails people prefer reading, or which social media post works best.
What is A/B testing?
A/B test (or split testing) is simply using two variants that target the same audience at preferably the same time in order to see which performs better. Once you have analysed the results, you can adopt the winning variant. For example, it’s been proven that using visuals on social media increases engagment. How was this proven? Through split testing: variant A involved posting a Facebook update without an image, while variant B involved positing the same update with an image. In this case, variant B was the winning one.
Examples of tests
Anything that requires a response can be tested. Emails, social media, call to action and websites. Let’s say that you wish to change the look of your homepage, and you have two designs in mind but you are not sure which one will have a better response. You can launch both of them, side by side, and see which one performs better – this way you will have a clearer idea of which is preferred by your audience and move forward with it.
Another example would be wishing to have more subscribers opening your newsletters. A way to go about it through A/B testing is by having two different subjects, send them to the same number of people and analyse the response after X amount of time (this can vary from thirty minutes, to eight hours – it’s up to you to decide). The version that would have been opened the most in the amount of time you would have decided on is the winning one. Through this type of testing you will be able to understand which subjects are more eye-catching and interesting to your audience.
You may wish to have more people purchasing products through your website. Consider changing the color of the purchase button – you’ll be surprised by how much of a difference such a little alteration could make. Get creative and find out which option your audience prefers!
Check out how Obama managed to raise $60 million through testing.