A/B Testing

Illustration by Experience Solutions
Illustration by Experience Soluttions

Last week I attended a breakfast seminar on the topic of Web A/B testing , hosted by Increo. Here are some of the take aways from the event:

WHAT is A/B testing?
A/B testing (sometimes called split testing) is comparing two versions of a web page to see which one performs better. You compare two web pages by showing the two variants (let’s call them A and B) to similar visitors at the same time. The one that gives a better conversion rate, wins! ( Definition from: https://visualwebsiteoptimizer.com/ab-testing/ )

WHY A/B testing?
A/B testing is an easy way to maximize your web results. Colors, placement, size, text and so on, can have a big impact the converting rate ( Conversion rate- how many of your visitors that complete the “goal” you’ve set for the web site devided by the total number of visitors – A conversion is a goal / purpose you set for your web page. It could e.g. be downloading a whitepaper, buying a product from your web shop, register for your newsletter or signing up for your event).

Useful tips to get started:

Baby steps

Test small differences (If you change everything, you won´t know what gave you the increased effect!)

Take your time

To get the most accurate results, a significant number of web visitors are needed, and you should spend 1 – 2 weeks to testing before evaluating the results.

Less is more
The Paretto Princippal ( or the 80/20 rule): 80 % of the content on your web page is unnecessary, while 20 % is crucial. Solutions: Limit the content – get better results. Use A/B testing to see what parts of the content you can/ should remove and what parts to keep.

Hick´s law:  More options increase the web visitors decision time, and also increase the risk of them leaving the page without completing their task. Solution: Try remove some of the options.

For instance, a customer of Increo removed a section showing similar products to the item the visitor just added to their shopping cart, and experienced a significant increase in the number of customers that completed their purchase.

Size matters
Fitt’s Law: Objects that are fare away from the center of the screen ( where the visitors eyes mostly points) get less clicks. And bigger objects (banners, buttons, fonts) get more clicks than others.

Solution: Try increasing the size of the content you want to highlight and place it at the center of the page.

Push my (red) buttons
The color red might trigger some assotiaons to “Stop”, “Danger” for some people (me included), but the fact of the matter is that a red “buy now” or “register here” button generates more click-actions than any other color (tested by Increo and their customers)!

Other colors that typically also trigger web visitors attention are blue and green

Useful tools to get you started: 


Google Analytics Content Experiment


Campaign Monitor (For A/ B testing of  Newsletter / eDM subject lines, sender, design. I´ve used this a lot – and love it! :-))

Visual Website Optimizer has a lot of great resources on A / B testing.


2 thoughts on “A/B Testing

  1. Veldig interessant! Vi driver med A/B-testing på jobb og bruker Google Analytics som verktøy. Virkelig en god måte å se hva som funker eller ikke! :)

    1. Takk for at du kikker innom, Ann Merete! :)
      Har tidligere testet mye a/b når det gjelder nyhetsbrev, og det er virkelig kult å se hvor mye en liten forskjell kan ha å si! Gleder meg til å få testet det mer på web og!

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