A/B testing allows marketers to test and improve the performance of their websites and campaigns. Experiments are run on content, landing pages, emails, and every other part of the marketing funnel.
Studying the test wins of other companies is a productive way to uncover new experiment ideas. While each website is different, the same general themes apply to most websites.
The experiments below highlight tactics that marketers can use to increase conversions and boost ROI. These website experience improvements also help with SEO performance. Specific takeaways include:
- Include relevant images in content
- Remove navigation menus and external links from landing pages
- Optimize the Attention Ratio on landing pages
- Use segments to increase email relevancy
Table of Contents
- Content with relevant images gets 94% more views
- Removing a navigation menu can increase conversions by 100%
- Improving the Attention Ratio can increase conversions by 31%
- Readers decided in 3 to 4 seconds whether to view an email
- Segmented email campaigns produce 30% more opens and 50% more click-throughs
Content with relevant images had 94% more views
Content marketing company Skyword analyzed the impact of images on content performance. Skyword's platform hosts tens of thousands of articles and content. The company has access to performance data for each piece of content on the platform.
Skyword's overall finding was that embedding relevant images in content meaningfully improves content performance. They also found that the impact varies significantly by content vertical. Here are the specific insights from the analysis:
- Content containing related images performed better across all content categories in all months tested
- On average, total views increased by 94 percent if a published article contained a relevant photograph or infographic when compared to articles without an image in the same category
- Certain categories, like news, politics, and sports, benefit more than others, such as entertainment, where image libraries are frequently duplicated across the web
- Performance was further improved by search optimizing image captions and metadata
Removing a navigation menu increased conversions by 100%
Most websites have carefully optimized navigation menus that make it easy for website visitors to find the web pages that they need. Running A/B tests on navigation menus is common – fully removing navigation menus is a bolder experiment.
Yuppiechef, South Africa's premiere kitchen and home store, ran this exact experiment on its navigation menu. By removing the navigation menu, VWO reported that the company increased conversions on the corresponding landing page by 100%. The variant on the right with no navigation had a conversion rate of 6%, compared to 3% for the original landing page.
Yuppiechef's hypothesis was that the variant without the navigation bar would provide fewer distractions, and help the user focus on the primary reason they had landed on this particular page. The next case study on the Attention Ratio builds upon this insight.
Improving the Attention Ratio increased conversions by 31%
Attention Ratio is the ratio of links on a landing page to the number of campaign conversion goals. In an optimized campaign, your Attention Ratio should be 1:1.
This means that optimized landing pages have a single conversion path and no other external links. Home pages typically have Attention Ratios between 10:1 and 150:1. This helps explain why home pages don't perform well as landing pages.
Unbounce ran an experiment that tested the impact of removing social share buttons and external links. The attention ratio of the page shown below improved from 10:1 to 1:1. As a result, the variant on the right had a 31% increase in conversions.
Readers decided in 3 to 4 seconds whether to view an email
Consumers are inundated each day with hundreds of marketing messages across several communication channels. As a result, individuals must decide whether or not to read a message quickly. In fact, Litmus reported that readers spend 3 to 4 seconds deciding if they are going to view your email.
There are a few best practices that you can follow to improve your open and click rates. These are concentrated on the parts of an email that recipients view first – the sender name, subject line, and preheader text.
|Email Component||Best Practice|
|Sender recognition||Subscribers are more likely to interact with recognizable and trustworthy email addresses. When possible, use a name or company name they’re familiar with.|
|Subject line||The length of subject lines should be under 50 characters. Also, it is best not to repeat brand names or use confusing internal language. Emojis are one way to ensure your subject lines standout.|
|Preheader text||Many email programs include a preview of email content next to the subject line. Preheader text should add value to the subject line, spark curiosity, or include a call-to-action.|
Segmented email campaigns produced 30% more opens and 50% more click-throughs
Segmentation is another way to improve content performance. Marketers can optimize content for the target segment, which increases relevancy. Monetate released data on the power of intelligent email marketing. Some of the key takeaways are:
- Segmented email campaigns produce 30% more opens than undifferentiated messages
- Segmented email campaigns have a 50% higher click-through rate than undifferentiated messages
- The email channel has a higher conversion rate than search and social media