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split-testing

Many small businesses that get leads through internet marketing efforts could improve their conversion rates by optimizing their landing pages. The most effective way to do so is to split test your landing pages and see how your traffic reacts to different elements on your page.

I have been doing a lot of split testing campaigns recently through my job at AdFicient and have gained great knowledge from it. I’ll share some of the most effective changes you can make to your pages in order to increase your conversion rates and sales.

To get started with split testing, I would recommend using a tool such as Visual Website Optimizer or Optimizely. Both have their pros and cons and you should try the trial versions of each to see which one suits you and your business better.

Call-to-Action Buttons

The most important part of your landing page is the call-to-action button. Your web users need to know exactly what to do next and making the call-to-action buttons the focal point of the page is crucial.

Below are several ways to attract attention to your call-to-action buttons:

  • Colors – If your control button is green, try drastic changes such as red or blue.
  • Size – It’s obvious that bigger buttons are more visible, but also try to avoid having a button that takes over the entire page.
  • Isolation – Isolate the button from other elements by adding plenty of white space around the button.
  • Icon – Try to add an icon such as an arrow to accompany the text inside the button. Arrows generally do very well to guide user’s eyes to specific direction.

Headlines

The next part you should try to test is the headline of your landing page. Does your headline clearly describe what your product or service is about? Avoid using overly complex headlines that are longer than one line.

Other than testing your headline in different colors and sizes, you can also try changing the value proposition of your headline.

Short and Precise Copy

Unless the product or service you are selling is very complicated in nature and requires a lot of detail, you should try to make your copy as short and precise as possible. People don’t like to read long sales pitches and many will click the back button when they see a wall of text.

Test different length variations of copy such as 2 paragraphs, 1 paragraph, and couple of sentences. One thing to keep in mind is that there is a fine line between too much copy and too little copy. Although short copy will increase clicks on the call-to-action button, it’s important to keep track of the user’s actions throughout the entire sales process until the final thank you page.

I have seen many times a case where a very short copy of text leads to dramatic increases in call-to-action clicks, but then users drop off at the next steps because they were not given enough information to start off with so they start to change their minds.

Badges and Seals

If you are selling a service or product, you will need to be trustworthy to your users. One of the easiest ways to do that is to get accreditations or certifications then post their badges and seals on your website.

Some of the most common badges include the SSL secure website and Better Business Bureau rating. I’ve written a bit more in-depth about this subject before and you can get a few more ideas here.

Testimonials

Similar to badges and seals, the goal of testimonials is to increase the perception your users have of your website and business. Testimonials reassure your prospective customers that you can be trusted to provide the product or service you promise.

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About Haris Bacic

Haris leads the creative and SEO strategy at AdFicient, a full-service search engine marketing and business development agency, which specializes in PPC management, SEO, conversion rate optimization, phone call tracking, web design, and analytics. If you enjoyed this article, you can also follow Haris on Twitter.

  • Greg Stern

    Some really great suggestions here, and also very timely as I am in the middle of optimizing some SEM campaigns. These are all great suggestions for the landing pages. I would also love to hear in a future post if you have a similar list on techniques and methodologies for writing the AdWords advertising copy for the text ads.

    • http://www.harisbacic.com/ Haris

      Hey Greg, thanks for the comments and especially the suggestion for future article. I’ll definitely consider it.

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