Date archives "October 2008"

Headline Test Strategies – Tutorial

Hello Guys and Gals.  Today I decided that I was going to do something a little different with my blog.  I want to start incorporating at least one unique tutorial every week or so.  Some of the tutorials will be explained through videos and some through images but the main focus is for them to be 100% useful and valuable to you.

So… lets move on.

It’s all about Headlines

Today’s tutorial is focusing on headlines on your web page and how to use best practices for A/B testing or multivariate testing.

The headline on a site is one of the single most important pieces.  It can make or break whether the visitor stays on the page or hits the back button.  Today I want to expand on why it’s so important and what strategies you can use to create persuasive headlines.

First, what is A/B & Multivariate Testing?

In internet marketing, multivariate testing is a process by which more than one component of a website may be tested in a live environment. It can be thought of in simple terms as numerous split tests or A/B tests performed on one page at the same time.

Split tests and A/B tests are usually performed to determine the better of two content variations, multivariate testing can theoretically test the effectiveness of limitless combinations. The only limits on the number of combinations and the number of variables in a multivariate test are the amount of time it will take to get a statistically valid sample of visitors and computational power.

Tips & Secrets on creating highly persuasive headlines?

You know what I’m talking about right.  Those attention grabbing headlines, that suck you right in.  Well you would be surprised just how much simple changes can affect the performance of a headline.

Let’s just take a look at a few examples.

1. Test asking a question:

  • Do you make an impact in your company?
  • Can you make an impact in your company?
  • Will you make an impact in your company?
  • How do you make an impact in your company?

2. Test numbers (fractions & percentages)

  • 9/10 Dentists Recommend Sparkling White Toothpaste.
  • Nine out of Ten Dentists Recommend Sparkling White Toothpaste.
  • 90% of Dentists Recommend Sparkling White Toothpaste.

3. Test the formatting (Bold, Italic, Capitalization, Colors, Fonts, etc.)

  • How do you Make an Impact in your Company?
  • How do you make an impact in your company
  • HOW DO YOU MAKE AN IMPACT IN YOUR COMPANY?
  • How do you Make an Impact in your Company?
  • How do you Make an Impact in your Company?

Before reading on, I must give some credit for this post.  The above examples were something I found in easily one of the best Website Testing books.  The book is called Always Be Testing, written by Bryan Eisenberg.  I have mentioned this book in a previous post, but this is more of thanks for all of the help and insight he provided with someone already pretty knowledgeable with MVT testing.  Even all of the things I have experienced with MVT testing, Bryan opened up new ideas that I would have never thought of.  Thanks Bryan, your book was awesome and anyone looking to get into website testing & optimization should absolutely BUY this book.

So Get on the Testing Wagon

In just a few bullet points I have given you some great testing ideas to implement on your website.  The scary thing this is just for the headline!  Think about all of the different variables you can test on a website.

When you get involved with huge marketing budgets and your spending thousands or even millions on paid search, every percentage and conversion matters.  That’s why testing your websites and landing pages are so important and should never be swept under the rug.

So I dare you.  If you are trying to optimize your landing page or boost product sales this holiday season.  Give testing a try.   The investment will come back to you over and over again.

More to come…

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