As an email marketer, you already might have experience with A/B testing, or split testing. Different audiences are drawn to different aspects of your emails, and having this knowledge is incredibly valuable to your business and Conversion Rate Optimization (CRO) efforts.
Through A/B testing, you utilize the simplest way to gather statistical analysis with the least amount of time and money. You can increase your website traffic, lower bounce rate, and lower cart abandonment, among many other benefits.
There are a lot of ways to go about A/B testing. We have compiled a few quick tips to keep in mind as you run your next test emails.
What exactly is A/B testing?
Before we dive in, we want to ask: Are you new to email marketing? No problem! Here is a quick overview of what A/B testing is:
- Randomized experimentation process
- Two or more versions of your email newsletter are shown to different segments of subscribers at the same time
- Trying to determine which version has the maximum impact and drives business metrics
- Also referred to as split testing
Now that you have a better understanding, we have some quick tips for making the most of your A/B testing.
Make the most of A/B testing
Identify your goal: You definitely are going to look at the metrics for your two test email campaigns. However, before you even hit send, make sure you have a goal for this test. By doing this, you will be focusing on it as you write both email campaigns. Deciding this after the fact will be stressful and can pull you in many directions. Instead, maybe you want to figure out if your need to update your imagery, include emojis in your subject line, refine your call-to-action, and having that goal before even writing will help you to refine your task.
Pick one variable: Whether it is the subject line, your imagery, your layout, or your call-to-action, you need to pick one variable to test for your goal. The first tip and this tip go hand-in-hand. Pick one area of your email campaigns to focus on, and implement your theory there. This also can help you break down the metrics after the testing.
Split your subscribers randomly: For the best results, make sure your subscribers are split randomly and as equally as possible. This way your campaigns will hit a variety of groups, and the results aren’t skewed. Many email campaign providers often have a tool to help you with this aspect of testing.
Use an online review tool: Use a tool that allows you to quickly review multiple versions of your A/B testing in one place. With ProofJump, stakeholders can easily review, comment on, and approve the different variations of the email campaigns on one page. It’s also a convenient place to refer back to when it comes time to tabulate the results.
Give the test enough time: I know you might be excited, but let the test run long enough to get sufficient data to analyze. This might take hours, days, weeks, or even months! This all depends on the variable you are testing, and how much traffic, and how many subscribers you have at the moment of testing.
Ask for feedback: So far we have talked about quantitative data, but what about qualitative data? You see the metrics but you aren’t completely sure why people feel the way they do. One way to find out these details is to ask subscribers to take a poll or survey. This can be easily accomplished and added in at the end of an email campaign or within an exit or a thank-you email, depending on what your campaign is testing. Knowing the why can help you shape some future decisions.
Some say A/B testing is like a game of chess: There are rules to follow and moves to be devised ahead of time, but results may vary. By using some of our quick tips while producing your A/B testing email campaigns, you will be sure to make the most of your experiment and, in turn, your future campaigns.