A/B tests are most commonly used to evaluate landing pages by small and mid-sized marketers. You’ve no doubt heard about split test results that were overwhelmingly positive. So why has your split test failed and, more importantly, what can you learn from it? How can you use a failed test to create an ultimate success?
Why Split Tests Fail:
A very common error is to run an invalid test. This boils down to ending the experiment before statistically significant results have been obtained. When the initial results are positive, a enthusiastic webmaster might abandon the testing process. This can produce an invalid conclusion and, ultimately, a failed test.
A well-researched test is essential if you want valid results. The more you put into your test design, the more informative your results will be. Test design should include:
- Clickstream analytics
- Click Tale Aesthetics
- User testing
- Heuristic usability
- Previous test results
- Editorial staff input
Not Testing Different Variations:
Making small changes to the variation page and then running s split test will often show the original page as outperforming the variation. Feel free to make small changes in a split test, but don’t ignore larger changes that could increase conversion just because you’re afraid of failing the test!Because split testing is an A/B test, it won’t tell you which aspects of the variation page are responsible for increased page performance. Multivariate testing is a better way to identify small changes that have a positive effect. Testing the entire page will reveal information you can use to design a high-performance web page.
Profiting From Failure
A failed A/B test doesn’t mean there’s nothing of value in the results. Studying the analytics can yield critical information. Examine how visitors navigated your site with behavior analytics. Use clickstream analytics to isolate any positive aspects of the failed variation. You might learn that although your variation landing page did not increase sales, it did generate more traffic.
Test … And Test Again
Although it’s satisfying to perform an A/B test that delivers results you want, many webmasters have created remarkable success based on failure. Think of A/B testing as way to root out what’s not working. It’s natural to want good results, but some of the most notable achievements in history were built on a series of failures. What you learn from a failed test could ultimately lead to a significant accomplishment.