It’s a given that different types of people have varying preferences.
Finding the middle ground to satisfy the majority of them is the main problem that web designers and programmers have to deal with, because the actual measure of the success of a site is usually gauged on the conversion rates.
Conversion could mean a variety of things to different people.
- For marketers, it could be the number of sales leads or email sign-ups.
- For online retailers, it could be the number of sales made in a day.
- For publishers, it could mean the number of new subscribers or returning visitors per day.
Regardless of what type of conversion you’re going for, one technique that can help you increase it is A/B testing.
The Deal with A/B Testing
A/B testing is a method that aims to help webmasters increase their conversions by presenting users with a site design and with content that will appeal to them. The technique involves showing two versions of the website, dubbed as “A” and “B,” to the users and noting the responses that each version generates from them.
The version that got more favorable results is deemed as the better one, and the changes from that version are then implemented on the site.
What is Product Recommendation?
A/B testing techniques are often used with product recommendation. The latter is a method that involves presenting related content to the user based on their previous browsing history and preferences.
This is used by many major sites on the web like Amazon, eBay, and Yahoo. For online retailers, the product recommendations are determined by considering the items that are currently in the buyer’s shopping cart.
Recommendations for content sites and blogs involve displaying posts and articles that are relevant to the ones that the user has already read.
What A/B Testing is For
A/B testing is used for a variety of reasons. It could be to optimize websites, improve email marketing campaigns, or come up with better advertising and marketing materials.
The main purpose of A/B tests is to figure out what your site visitors prefer, so you can create better content and modify the existing one you have to fit their needs and preferences.
Basic Steps in A/B Testing
Conducting A/B tests is relatively easy and simple, which is why it’s highly favored by many Internet marketers and webmasters.
- Evaluate your current content. The first step is to assess your entire website. It might be helpful to go over it with some other people who can point out any weak points on your design that you might not be able to spot. Rank the items on your list according to priority: which of them are more urgent or which ones need to be addressed right away?
- Design your test. After deciding which element should be tested first, it’s time to create two variations of it to use in the test. Make sure both versions are distinct from the other, although they don’t have to be extremely or drastically different.
- Run the A/B test. You can run your tests with the use of software or online tools like Google’s Website Optimizer. Google has made their service available for free, and although it has some limitations, it’s extremely useful and can be used to run A/B tests as well as other optimization testing methods.
- Implement changes. Once the test is done, it’s time to analyze the results and determine which version got more site visitors to do what you wanted them to do. In short, determine which variation gave you more conversions and implement that on your actual website. Go back to the first step and run more tests on the other elements that you’ve listed to continue optimizing your website.