What A/B Testing Is & Why Smart Marketers Do It

When marketers have a clear understanding of what their audience wants, an effective campaign will move consumers to the next phase of the customer journey — this is the gold standard of successful Relationship Marketing. There’s no doubt that marketers need a constructive method to help them determine which marketing assets, tactics and more will elicit the highest levels of engagement. Using A/B testing, otherwise known as split testing, marketers have the ability to move their business metrics in a positive direction by creating campaigns driven and backed by data, eliminating the guesswork of what elicits action from your audience.

What is A/B testing?

A/B testing is a marketing experiment in which you take two or more versions of a variable, such as a headline, length of content, landing page design, etc., and show segmented audiences the individual versions of content. This process entails that one audience group will view one version, and another audience group, the other version. By testing a number of variations, marketers can then begin to make data-backed decisions about which strategies are most effective. Testing two or more versions, the version that moves your business metrics positively, wins. By then implementing the winning version with your entire audience, you can drive engagement, reactions, revenue, and increase your ROI. 

When considering Conversion Rate Optimization, or CRO, A/B testing stands firmly as one of its overarching components, allowing marketers to gather both qualitative and quantitative user insights. Some of the benefits of A/B testing are that it allows you to collect data that will provide insights into user behavior, engagement rate, pain points, and even satisfaction with your overall marketing strategy. 

What A/B testing tells smart marketers

  • How different subject lines impact open rates
  • How the use of emojis impacts engagement
  • How different versions of buttons elicit action
  • How different versions of imagery drive engagement
  • How preheader text effects open rates
  • And plenty more!

The benefits of A/B testing

Because A/B testing is completely data driven, it helps leave out uncertain guesswork, and allows you to connect with your customers in the most productive way possible. Between tested variations, you’ll be able to identify clearly what works best, based on statistically significant improvements in metrics.

When users open and read your emails, they need to be able to achieve an actionable goal, whether that be learn more about your product or service, make a purchase, or simply browse. Not being able to achieve a defined goal such as one of these will lead to a poor user experience. A negative experience — whether it be the result of a hard-to-find CTA button, confusing copy, or a non user-friendly interface — increases friction for customers, driving them away and impacting your conversion rate. Conducting simple A/B testing will help you gather data about customer behavior, conduct an analysis of your readers’ pain points, and point you in the right direction for what is working well and what needs to be tossed. 

The cost of driving quality engagement can be huge — but it doesn’t have to be. A/B testing lets you make the most of your existing customer list, helping you increase conversions without having to spend additional dollars to acquire new users for your list. Even the smallest changes in your campaigns and strategies can help deliver an increased ROI and significantly improve your overall conversion rate. 

To learn more about A/B testing and other analytics tools from Emma, check out our analytics and reporting features or read our guide on A/B Testing. Get the guide below! 

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