Simply put, you have a website and chances are you’re trying to monetize that website.
Different sites have different ways of monetizing, whether it be by the sale of a product, a subscription to a newsletter or advertising revenue, you always need the user to so “something” in order to trigger that revenue stream.
When you built your site, you were convinced that having a huge “Add to cart” button is the best way to convince your user to add to cart, but what if you’re dead wrong and users actually tend to click on that button more often when that button is smaller and it reads “Buy now”?
Your ego might get a little bruised but your revenue stream will improve so which one is more important to you?
Traditionally, the way you would test this out is by first putting up one variation and leave it up for say a month and then switch it out for your second variation, run it for a month and then compare your sales over the last two months and see which variation convinced more users to add to cart and check out.
The issue with this method is that it’s tedious and every day that you’re testing the second variation you’re nervous that perhaps this variation is causing you to loose sales every day.
Enters this new concept called “Split” AB testing, and as it’s name implies, it allows you to display both versions of the page concurrently, so during that first month 50% of your visitors will see the “Add to cart” button and 50% of your visitors will see the “Buy now” button. You can of course set the balance to 75% and 25%, but the point is that both versions are running at the same time and you can quickly gauge the effect of your variations.
Most campaigns will still require some time to build up an appropriate data set in order for you to determine which version performs better, but at least you won’t be worried sick that your sales will nosedive since a portion of your visitors will still see the original content.
This method is also more effective because there are a lot of other variants that go into what pushes a user to add to cart, as a simple example, gardening tools will sell better in the summer than in the winter so if you ran the first variation in the summer and the second variation in the winter, the results of your test will be biased by a factor other than the wording of your button – the season. With split AB testing, all these factors go away and we’re testing two variations under the EXACT same set of circumstances, and the results of the test will be much more indicative about which button converts more than the other.
There are a lot of companies out there that will simplify the process of split AB testing, with visual dashboards and nice reports etc, the pricing varies so make sure you look at what’s offered in that monthly plan before you sign up.
Once you’re ready to get started, you can read up on all these respective sites what the best practices are and how you can get started, but may we suggest that you start with something simple and see how that works, then you can take it from there and see how you can best monetize your site, this is going to be a real eye opener and a lot of fun, enjoy!