Important things you should know about A/B testing

Importance of A/B Testing or Split Testing

If you are a UX designer, you may have heard the term A/B testing or Split Testing. As a design & development firm, we have created a lot of websites and optimized them for better conversion rates. During this process we have found A/B testing to be invaluable.

What is A/B testing?

A/B testing is a process to test two variations of a landing page for better conversion. The objective of the test is to verify which variation is leading more visitors towards your goals. We can test two completely different designs for a landing page or we can test small changes like changing a couple of elements (sign-up button or copy) in our design.

A/B testing is all about testing a hypothesis

For me, the most important thing in an A/B testing is the “hypothesis”. It is better to make changes to a design based on an assumption. This assumption may create better results if it is backed by data collected through a test. A/B testing does that for you.

For example, you have changed the text, size and color of one of the call-to-actions by assuming that the variation is easy to read and understand, thus making it more user friendly. This ‘assumption’ is a hypothesis you made about your visitors’ interaction with the design of the page.

The importance of creating a hypothesis is that once you are finished with the testing, you know precisely what data you need in order to verify your assumption. In the example above, the number of clicks or hovers on the call-to-action you changed would be helpful to verify your hypothesis.

Be consistent with your variations

It is very important to display the same variation to a repeat visitor. Make sure to use a tool that has a feature to remember the variations shown to each visitor. For example, if you are testing price or promotional offers on your variations, you may end up showing two different prices to a repeat visitor which creates a negative impact on your image.

Analyze mobile version of your design

If your design is responsive, then you may want to keep an eye on all the users browsing your website via mobile devices. With growing online traffic via mobile phones, this is a very important point. Smaller screen resolutions and call-to-actions may impact your conversion from mobile phones. People are using their mobile phone to make a lot of purchases, and you don’t want to miss all that traffic.

Always reach for a low-hanging fruit first

For your first A/B testing you don’t need to make big and drastic changes in the variations. You can always try simple and common things. The element most people neglect is the copy in h1, h3 and call-t0-actions. For example, you can always start with the copy in all of your call-to-action buttons, like changing “Sign-up” with “Try it for free”.

Wrap Up

The first few A/B tests may produce limited results, but don’t despair. An A/B test can produce two types of results, a negative result or a positive result. So, the key to boost conversion rates is to do a load of A/B tests.

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