Every successful online business does it. Whether you want to get higher conversion rates, more newsletter signups, product purchases, news feed subscriptions or anything else - you need to do multivariate testing.
To do this smartly and ensure the best results, you are to remember the following 5 essential things:
Before diving into the procedure, you have to build a plan outlining your business goals, that is, what you want to achieve by this multivariate testing campaign. The truth no one is going to argue against is you can’t get measurable results without first identifying issues to be resolved and goals to achieve. Thus, your multivariate testing strategy needs careful planning so that you can allocate your efforts and time smartly by focusing on the right design elements and on the brand goal. Once you have an accurate timescale ready to be implemented, you’ll also know if your testing time and data gathering are realistic.
Another multivariate testing success factor is how well you understand the test outcomes, because this understanding will let you make informed changes and updates on your site. Metrics intend to inform you on the user behavior and its change after the testing. Being a gold mine in identifying your online business problems, metrics can also show you the number of visitors which aren’t converting, bouncing and even what they were attracted by instead. Using this valuable data you’ll be able to know which areas of your site are to be tested first, provided you already know which of them directly affect the plans and goals you’ve set.
3. Interference Prevention
When you test the design variations on two different pages, chances are test interference will arise. To secure yourself from such issue, make sure the testing solution you are using allows you to keep page designs independent of one another. The testing software should be able to explain the way it handles several tests at work. Otherwise, running multi-page tests containing design variations on both pages, you risk the chance variables having effect on customer performance may change.
4. Testing Attribution
Another problem you’ll want to avoid is getting skewed results as a result of overlooking some testing attributes. For example, inaccurate results are likely to spring when there are multiple paths to one and the same goal. If you forget to change some minor element on the tested pages, this can make the test outcome misleading and you’ll be unable to access with confidence where the users are contacting you from. To make a long story short, whenever there are several ways of completing a task, you should get aware of them to prevent yourself from making wrong conclusions afterwards.
5. Statistical Confidence
As we all know, the right decisions are made only with some level of confidence achieved from the information everybody has in the form of knowledge and experience. When it comes to multivariate testing, it means that to make the right conclusion from test results, you need to reach a high level of statistical confidence. Statistically significant test results ensure you understand the test outcome correctly and avoid reading too deep into them when you have just a few conversions. Not to be caught on fake statistical significance levels, make sure you know how those percent rates are formed in your reporting data and remember that smaller sample sizes in multivariate testing usually produce more statistically significant results.
Being an essential part of every marketing campaign, multivariate testing reduces the number of decisions taken with the help of your gut feeling and lets you know what your customers really need. To always get positive results of your multivariate testing efforts, avoid the common mistakes by following the advice given in this article.
Created: 25 Nov 2014
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