One of the best ways to improve website performance is a method known as A/B Testing. As many companies around the country are looking to enhance their business online it’s important to use this kind of testing effectively to make informed changes to your website.
What is A/B Testing?
A/B testing is the process of testing different versions of the same web page(s), to different portions of your site visitors. It’s an invaluable tool for improving the overall performance of a website, often stopping you having to splash out on a complete website rebuild. It can help you improve existing content, give you clear results on what and where you can make changes and reduces the risk of making big changes to your website without knowing how performance will be affected.
Now that you know what A/B testing is and why it’s important, we’ve come up with 3 testing ideas for you to consider for your own website.
1: Change Your Images
Images on your website can have an immediate impact on your visitors. Whether it’s to set the theme of a page, show off a particular product or demonstrate one of your services, choosing the right image for your users can be tricky. We often pick images based on how we feel about them ourselves, if it “looks good” or “I like that”. These sentiments may not translate directly for your users though and finding out if using different images is more effective is a valuable A/B test to implement.
We often pick images based on how we feel about them ourselves, rather than considering how a user might interpret them … and ultimately it’s the user we’re trying to appeal to.
Some tests we would recommend would be changing the images themselves and perhaps moving them or scaling their size to make them more or less visible depending on their purpose. With an A/B test giving you clear results based on your website users, you can make informed changes to improve images on your website.
Test different images to see which performs better.
2: Update Page Structure and Appearance
More often than not pages on a website don’t get updated very often. This includes the layout, structure and appearance of a page. We all make business decisions that may result in many small changes. Over time these changes may cause your website to appear out-dated or unsuitable, especially if you add new services, products or features. Layout and structure is important for delivering the right information to your users. Here are some questions to consider:
- Is text on the website clear and easy to read?
- Have you updated the company logo or changed any of it’s colours?
- Does your website display properly on mobile devices?
- Do you have any parts of your page that look poorly formatted or uneven?
There are a lot of little things that can affect user experience when browsing your website. A/B testing can let you test all kinds of things when it comes to page structure. Here are a couple of examples to get you thinking about what you could test on your own website.
- A larger font size, perhaps a different font altogether.
- Alternate page colours, such as white and a smooth burgundy.
- Moving recent news and blog posts to a side column.
- Bringing in your business twitter feed directly onto the page.
By using A/B testing, all of these changes can be tested before being implemented. You can learn if they work and how well they work without needing to spend anything and decide on the best way to move forward. Remember that you can test multiple times to see what works best before committing to anything.
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3: Include Better CTAs
Are you interested in getting some more leads or transactions through your website? A/B testing pages on your website by adding Calls-To-Action (CTAs) is a fantastic way to test improvements to website performance. There are many options available depending on what you offer through your website. Whether it be for products or services, we have a few suggestions for you to consider when A/B testing:
- A button to “request a quote” on service pages.
- Bigger and brighter “Buy Now” buttons.
- Changing colours to highlight key points of interaction.
- Adding a phone number that a user can tap to call.
- Creating a banner saying “Sale Now On!” if you’re running a promotion.
Experiment with CTAs and test if performance improves.
These are just the tip of the iceberg and with A/B testing you can find out if changing or adding new CTAs have an impact on your website users. If they result in more transactions or leads, then you can safely make those changes to your website.
Begin Your Tests Today
Start using A/B testing to assess potential changes and find out in advance if those changes will work positively for your website. This will save you a considerable amount of time and ensures that decisions that you make are informed and are always resulting in an improvement to your website’s performance. Check out part 2 of this article for even more A/B testing ideas to consider when looking to improve your website.