A/B Testing: 3 Basic Tests You Really Should Do

A/B testing is used extensively by marketers in many different industries as a tool to improve campaigns, landing pages, banner ads and the like. Marketing tests are an extremely useful tool with particular relevance for display advertisers. But there are so many elements suitable for testing, where do you start?

Check out these three basic tests to help you learn more about the effectiveness of your ads and improve their performance.

1. Calls-to-Action

Calls-to-Action (CTA) are probably the single most important element of a banner ad and can radically improve the performance of your whole campaign. But do you go for “Act Now!” or “Don’t Delay” or a softer, less pushy approach, “Learn More”? The only way to be certain of what works best for your customers is to test.

When testing your existing CTA against a different one always leave everything else in the banner the same. Don’t change the colours, the buttons etc or your test results won’t reflect the CTA performance alone which is what you are testing for.

2. Colour scheme, backgrounds, images

It’s not clear whether including a photo, a graphic or a plain background is the most effective strategy for your display ads. There is no ‘right answer’; it’s totally up to you to determine what works best. In order to test this aspect of your ad you must leave the text unaltered and test only specific elements of the ad composition, one at a time.

A simple, smaller test can yield highly effective results without the need for complicated testing. Just changing a background or even the colour of a CTA button can be extremely useful and very effective.

3. Value proposition

Banner ads don’t offer much scope for copious amounts of copy due to the limited space they offer. Generally speaking you only have room for one value proposition or headline text and a couple of bullet points at the very most.

You can test your value proposition by using slight variations on the theme being careful not to change the main thrust of your message. Sometimes, changing just one word can be all it takes. The difference in meaning could be negligible but the increase in visits to your landing page could be influenced dramatically.

A/B testing can seem rather daunting at first but it really is a very simple and worthwhile tool which will help you to maximise the value of many aspects of your business, especially the effectiveness of your display which in turn will reflect directly on your bottom line.





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