How efficiently is your digital strategy helping business? As a digital marketer, we feel all the driven traffic is our strategy result. All your great results came with your real focused strategies or a hunch? The A/B testing assists us to make decisions on the real behaviour data rather than presume knowledge of customer behaviour.
What is A/B SEO Test?
AB testing or Split testing, it is a fantastic technique should be used by every SEO. AB testing helps you to figure out the best online marketing strategies that enhance the productivity of a website. It can be used to test anything on a website like a webpage, a call-to-action button, headings, colour, text, etc.
Basically, it is a test between two variants of a particular product with minimal changes.
For example, we are testing a web page with two different styles. We showcased Variant A to 50% of the visitors, variant B to rest 50% of the visitors. Having call-to-action button on the top right corner of the page for variant A. Variant B is having the same call-to-action button on the bottom of the page. On the result day, we found that variant A is getting us more conversion. We will use the format of the variant A in the webpage.
Image credit: VWO
How AB SEO test helps your business?
A/B SEO testing helps to find the bright spot of a webpage. You can figure out exactly which marketing strategies work best to enhance the growth of the business. As said above when you find one variant is performing 2x, 3x and more than other, than the performing variant is a golden egg.
Sometimes the amount we spend on paid traffic can be huge; the cost of conversation will not match our expectations. So why do you want to pay for traffic when you can get traffic for free of cost with simple AB SEO testing. A small change on a landing page of a website can result in significant increases in leads and sales.
A case study on AB SEO Testing: MedienReich has seen a 40% Increase in website engagement
MedienReich computer training is a German company which provides software training courses. The home page of the company contains services listed, segregated as three broad categories:
- Open Training
- Individual In-house training
- Individual Company training
The company decided to run a test with the help of VWO software to increase website engagement.
For the sack of test, they created one more page which is a duplicate of the home page. Instead of displaying broadly categorized services they changed it as 8 best-selling courses.
Result: MedienReich ran the test close to 20 days before embracing the changes with open arms six months back. According to Marc Stenzel, MedienReich SEM manager, the year-on-year value of the home page increased by 106.42% – from $2,149.72 to $4,436.71
Reference- Visual Website Optimizer
How to do AB SEO testing?
Analyze user behaviour from the insights given by analyzing tools. Before experimenting on testing have a clear hypothesis of the present data.
Before you start a test, you should know what is your goal for this test? By the end of your test, what do you want to know? There are many different elements we can test.
- Call-to-action – placement of the button, presenting actionable text etc.
- Content – Does my content communicating with the audience clearly.
- Design – Does the design of the landing page appealing good.
- Text – Style and format of the text do making any difference.
- Pricing tag – Sometimes a penny makes difference.
- Subscription Offers – Increasing the time period by days, weeks or months.
We can test many other elements on a website.
You can measure many elements at a time for every one test, Choose a primary goal to focus on before you run a test. Having a primary goal helps you to measure the accurate results.
Must follow Google guidelines for testing to avoid penalties:
Below are some important guidelines are given by Google on website testing.
Cloaking is a practice of showing one content to humans and a different content to Googlebot. It is considered as a violation of Google’s webmaster guidelines because it provides users with different content than they expected. Violating Google’s guidelines can result in demotion or penalization of your website from Google search results.
If you are running an A/B test with multiple URLs, you have to use the “rel=canonical” tag to all the alternate URLs to indicate that the original URL is preferred version. While testing, you may have many pages with similar content with minimal changes. If you forget to use this tag Google take it as duplicate content and it leads to drowning your webpage.
When you use “rel=canonical” tag for the variant pages, it signifies the Googlebot to consider only the original page.
Use 302 instead of 301
If you run an A/B test to a website, direct users to land on the variant URL from the original URL. Use temporary redirects (302), not a permanent redirects (301), this tells search engines that this redirect is temporary. This redirection signal helps the Googlebot to understand that, it should keep the original URL in their index rather than replacing it with the redirected one.
A certain period of time
The amount of time required for an experiment depends on the goals we set for the project. Once you gathered reliable data to make a conclusion, you should update your website with desired content variations. All the elements of the test must be deleted as soon as possible, such as variant URL, markup or testing scripts. If Google finds out you are running an experiment for unnecessarily for a long time period, it interprets that content is deceiving search engines. This kind of interpretation leads to penalties to a website.
Benefits of A/B testing:
1.Improves user engagement:
With minimal changes on elements of a page such as headlines, font size and style, placement of a call-to-action button, the colour of buttons may result in an increase of engagement and traffic of the website.
2.Reduced Bounce Rates:
When you put a lot of time and creativity for creating landing pages for your website, if the visitors are bouncing back without making any actions, it leads to disappointment. If it is the case happening to you, it is the time to perform A/B testing on web pages. The more time spent on the website by a visitor reduces the bounce rate.
3.High Conversation Rate:
A/B testing is the easiest and effective way to create actionable content to convert visitors into buyers. Carefully spend a little time to create two variant pages to find out what works best to your website. With a minimal cost, this test helps to increase your conversations.
4.Easy to Analyze:
With this test results, it is simple to analyze user expectations. We can understand which variant drawing more attention of a visitor, which elements should we change. We can easily find out the winner “variant A” or “variant B”.
Both the web pages are getting 100 impressions; Headline is the element we are targeting. If Variant A got 30 clicks out of 100, variant B got 20 clicks then variant is the winner in this test.
5.Increase in traffic, ranking and sales:
The most important benefit of A/B testing is the increase in traffic and sales. The lesser bounce rate, significant improvement in user engagement, higher conversation rate all these united results enhances the websites authority, page rank and sales.
Top 10 A/B testing tools:
Finally here are the top 10 A/B testing tools.
- Google Analytics Experiments
- Usability Hub (Five second test)
- AB Tasty
- Adobe Target
The Bottom Line:
I hope you got an idea about A/B SEO testing and its uses for SEO. A/B testing leads to trust and confidence in your brand and services, which give you, better ROI results in return. A/B testing is one of the most powerful ways to collect information about your copy-writing and design choices. We usually use it on our own website and as well as on our client’s sites. Following the right method or procedure is a challenging task. In order to unlock numerous benefits, you have to learn more about what convinces your audience to convert. It is time to take advantage of this career choice by learning SEO Certification Course