AB Test or Split-Testing for Higher Profits

Using AB tests, also called split-testing, can increase your online income drastically.
After all, if you can increase a conversion rate of 1% to 2%, your profits will double!

And conversion rates, believe it or not, are more important than traffic figures. If you can achieve higher conversions, using AB tests, you don’t need that much traffic to make a decent income.

Richard Patterson knows that and therefore he wrote today’s guest post.
Read this carefully if you want to increase your profits.
Here goes. Enjoy!

Why every blogger should AB test their way to higher profits

If you own a blog and the aim of that blog is to make money then my guess is that more than half of you are missing out on lots of potential income.

There’s many ways to make more money from your blog but two are very obvious. Two obvious ways to increase revenue from your blog are to get more visits to the blog or to make more money out of the people who already visit your blog.

Most bloggers spend much, much more of their time thinking about how they can get more visits to their site rather than how they can make more of their existing traffic.

This seems crazy as a few simple tests could give you a big increase in conversions and a 20% increase in conversions may be a much easier way to increase your revenue than a 20% increase in traffic.

So how can you increase revenue from your existing traffic?
The first thing to consider is what measurable actions result in an increase in revenue?

Do you make money through affiliate links in products you recommend in your newsletter? If so newsletter sign-ups might be a measurable action you could look to increase.

Do you have an eBook that makes you money or do you have pages promoting software that can help other bloggers that you make money from (again perhaps through affiliate links)? Do you make money from Adsense? All of these things are measurable actions.

Using an AB test to increase conversions
First let’s look at what a conversion rate is.
A conversion rate is the rate at which a measurable action is achieved. For an online marketer or blogger it describes is the percentage of your visitors that complete a measurable action.

For example if you have 100 people who visit your eBook page and 2 of them buy it then you have a conversion rate of 2%.
If you could increase you conversion rate to just 3% you would make 50% more from your eBook sales.

The easiest way to increase conversions is to AB test and it’s not only easier than you might think it’s free!

An AB test tests two different versions of a page to work out which one gives the best conversion rate. This is achieved by sending half of the traffic to one page (page A) and half to the other (page B) and measuring the conversion rate of each page to work out which one gives the best result.

There is a more detailed description here of AB testing on the Maxymiser website.

Using the example of the eBook landing page (the landing page will be the page you land the visitor on to try and sell them your eBook), you could test two pages with different titles or different images or different content.
If you change just one thing you will be able to measure the impact that changing that one element has.

If you have never done any testing before for the page in question it can be worth starting with something a little more drastic and trying to very different landing pages for your eBook. Once you see which page out of A and B is best (this is called the winning variant), then start to change one element at a time from this wining variant to keep improving conversion rates.

For example maybe start with changing the title of the page, then try the image, then the size of the title or the color, then the position of the offer on the page or the size and position of the ‘buy’ button for the eBook.

You might be thinking that this sounds complicated and expensive but it’s not.
AB testing can be run free of charge using Google’s Website Optimizer.
You can find details of exactly how to do this in their excellent tutorials section here which has videos to help you get started.

Google Website Optimizer also offers a more advanced form of testing called multivariate testing. It’s advisable to start with an AB test first.

If you do want to learn more about multivariate tests then again Maxymiser provide a guide called what is multivariate testing which explains the basics.

Now that you understand the benefits of AB tests and you know it’s free and easy to achieve, maybe next time someone asks you how you are spending your time to increase profits from your blog your won’t just give the standard answer of growing traffic!

If any of you have had experience of AB testing on their blogs it would be great to hear your experiences to share with other readers and hopefully encourage more people to try for themselves.

Richard Patterson is a freelance online marketing consultant who works for companies including conversion optimization specialists Maxymiser.

Do you occasionally use an AB test?
Post your experiences and comments below.

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3 thoughts on “AB Test or Split-Testing for Higher Profits

  1. Mifumi says:

    Thanks for the advice. How many sets of As and Bs do you usually make for a test run? Landing pages can have several variations, I think I will start with three sets of As & Bs to get the ball rolling 🙂

  2. Aff says:

    The interesting with testing in general is that test A IN ONE source might do better than test b and in another source the same test B, may perform better especially in display advertising. So testing, keep testing is the key here.

  3. Miguel Mc Allister says:

    Great Article!
    I have been trying AB testing for emails campaigns and it works amazing.
    You can try different types of emails and different subject lines.
    You’ll be amazed how subject lines in emails define if a person opens an email or not.

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