[Year-End Fundraising] Beginner’s Guide to Split A/B Testing
Data doesn’t lie. Here are data points that show Split A/B Testing:
- Helping the Obama Campaign be more competitive: Optimization at the Obama campaign: a/b testing
- Growing a housefile: How to Quadruple Your Opt In Rate
- Increasing click through rates: How changing a single word increased click through rate by 161%
- Improving email campaign performance: Use A/B Split Testing to Improve Your Email Marketing Campaigns
Testing allows you to learn what works and what doesn’t, and make communication decisions based on actual data, rather than hunch.
What to Test
If you’re new to Split A/B testing, you’ll get the most bang from your buck by first testing:
- Email Subject Lines
- Opening lines
- Positive Frame versus Negative Frame
- Email Headlines
- Email Images
- Call-to-Action Wording
- Call-to-Action Button Coloring
- Call-to-Action Button location
- Landing Page Layout
- Images on Landing Page
- Trust Logos on Landing Pages
- Landing Page Copy
How to Test
The most popular tools for testing your landing page, or any webpage, are:
- Optimizely. Create a test using their point-and-click editor. Easy to implement the winner once the test has given you results. No coding or technical knowledge needed.
- Visual Website Optimizer. Another easy-to-use tool with great results analysis. Their clickmaps show you where website visitors are interacting with your pages–insight the other tools don’t offer.
- Unbounce: Use their drag-and-drop-editor to design your landing pages or use anyone of their multiple high-performance templates as a starting point. Unbounce reminds of us of MailChimp’s best practice templates.
- Convert: Use Convert’s quick wizard to modify elements of your page design for an easy A/B test with good integration with Google Analytics.
Most email campaign software has built-in tools for A/B testing. However, here are some great guides and resources:
- Use 10% percent of your list to test one subject line or email element
- 10% to test the other subject line, or email element, at the same time
- The remaining 80% of your list receives the best-performing email a few hours later
Analyzing Your Results
Careful not to test too many things at once. If you test too many elements at the same time, you won’t know what drove results or didn’t.
For example, test your trust logo location on your donation page versus testing two completely different donation pages with different images, copy, trust logo location, and call-to-action wording. Then you know if placing your trust logos above the fold increases conversions or not.
If just want to know which of two options is more effective – then go on ahead and test two completely different options against each other. But generally speaking, this kind of approach doesn’t help you understand why one version outperformed the other so you can replicate the results, or build upon them.
[Year-End Fundraising] Series
We’ve now completed the entire series of strategies and tips for year-end fundraising campaigns. You can see all the posts here:
- Your Campaign Brief
- Email Frequency and Cadence
- Messages, Powerful Structures, and Narrative Arcs, Oh My!
- Top Tips for Your Landing Page
- Light Boxes Work!
- List segmentation
- Using social media to boost your year-end revenue
- Beginner’s Guide to Split A/B Testing