The Importance of A/B Testing

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The effectiveness of a marketing campaign can only really be evaluated by testing it against variations of itself. This process is known as A/B testing in digital marketing, and it represents the optimal methodology for tuning marketing campaigns and online properties to create a perfect harmony of revenue production.
What is A/B Testing 
Well before the Internet, companies long understood the success of a campaign often turned on optimizing even the smallest details of a marketing campaign. A brochure with a red background, for example, might produce seven percent more leads than the same brochure with a green background. As a result, companies spent considerable amounts of money and time testing different options to maximize results. A/B testing is the digital manifestation of this process, but with the benefits of both costing less and taking less time than traditional marketing.
A/B testing is simply a method to test small and large changes to your marketing campaigns and online properties to determine which configuration produces the superior results. These changes can range from simple modifications to the wording of a submission button on a form to a more substantive decision such as whether to include a form at all. With A/B testing, you generate hard data from your target audience that can be used to optimize any digital marketing campaign.
Why it’s Important
The important of A/B testing is difficult to understate. This testing is often the difference between the success and failure of marketing campaigns. For example, let’s assume you funnel prospects to a final lead generation page. Will the prospect take the action you desire or not? A certain percentage will, but is that submission rate sufficiently high to be profitable? With A/B testing, you can employ different strategies on the page to determine the mix that produces the best conversion rate.
Ask yourself a simple question. What type of testimonial are you going to view as more credible – one with an accompanying photo of the person providing the testimonial or just a text statement? A/B testing long ago established testimonials with photos can improve submission rates by as much as 10 percent. By incorporating this lesson and other small changes, a website producing nominal business can be converted into a vibrant revenue producer.
A/B testing is also important in that it gives you critical insight into your target audience. The more testing you perform, the more patterns will appear that you can incorporate into future products and marketing campaigns. Perhaps the target audience reacts positively to an email campaign offering a three-day sale of certain products at 15 percent off, but not as strongly to a banner on the site offering 15 percent off the same products for 90 days. This data suggests future marketing campaigns should focus on time-limited sales distributed by email. A savvy business will mine the data it accumulates to learn as much as possible about its target market, and then incorporate that knowledge to its financial gain.
One Final Thought
A/B testing is critical to your business success because it both optimizes the impact of your digital marketing while providing you with critical insight into your target market. Stop making guesses about your target market. Focus on A/B testing to develop hard data on your market and then incorporate the lessons into the marketing.
Your bottom line will thank you.

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