There is a saying in business that you should “always be marketing” but if that is true, then you should also “always be testing” to ensure that the marketing is working. You don’t want to spend time doing marketing that isn’t working. You want to do marketing that is working. Let’s go over the different things you can test. This isn’t an exhaustive list, but it should get you thinking about what you can test.
Social Media Engagement – What kind of posts is your audience more likely to engage with? Test different types to find out what people prefer. If you post a blog post and ask for commentary on the social post about the blog post does it happen? What if you add a poll? How about if you try using different images? What gets your audience engaging more?
Opt-In Pages – No matter what type of promotion it is, whether a sales page or an opt-in page you should test them the same. An opt-in page even if it’s a freebie is just as important if not more important than any other page. The reason is that when you get targeted people on your list it really makes a difference because you can market to them for the long term.
Email Subject Lines – The only way an email works is if your audience opens them. If you are having problems getting your subscribers to open them change your subject lines and test out new types to grab their attention so they’ll open it.
Email Calls to Action – Each email should have some form of CTA within it. For example, you may promote your products, services, a blog post you want them to read, and more in an email. But what type of CTAs work better?
Blog Post CTAs – Your blog posts should have CTAs too, but how are they working? If you’re not testing them, you don’t know. When you think of it each blog post is a new page on your site, so it can be tested exactly like any other page can be tested.
Long Posts or Shot Blog Posts – Does your audience respond better to short blog posts or long blog posts? You can test for that to find out what is working best for your audience. You want to ensure they grasp the information, but you’ll need to test to find out the way they prefer to receive it.
Graphics & Images – Many of us don’t even think about how images affect our audience. We just spend two minutes looking at stock photo sites like StockUnlimted.com to find a picture that we feel in that two minutes relates. But what if you used just the right image and increased 10x’s your conversions?
Social Proof – Does having social proof on your sales pages, website, and other landing pages make a difference in conversions? What about having social icons where you can invite them to follow you? Do you get that many to join your online communities with that tactic?
Date & Time You Send Social Messages – You can use software such as Audiense.com to find out exactly when your audience is using social media so that you can be more relevant to your audience. Testing and checking the metrics is also important.
Copy – You can test copy from any area whether it’s a blog post, an email, a social media blurb, a display adds – it doesn’t matter. Testing copy is a great way to get better at developing copy that gets results.
Headlines – Headlines are a type of copy. You want to use headlines that truly make a difference and get the attention of your audience. This is going to help you get your pages read to start with so testing them makes total sense.
HTML vs Plain Text in Email – Does your audience prefer to get their emails in HTML or plain text. Many people don’t even give it a thought and automatically make fancy HTML emails for their audience. What if that’s a waste of time?
Personalization in Emails – Everyone assumes personalization helps conversion rates. But does it really? If you test it, you can find out. This is generally referred to as “dynamic” emails. What that means is that you put the code in your email that grabs other information from the database like your customer’s name, birthdate or other information. The thing is they must fill it out properly for it to work out.
When You Send Emails – The time and date that you send emails can mean the difference between someone seeing your email or not seeing it. If people don’t see it and it gets lost in the dozens of other emails your audience receives your conversion rates will suffer.
Whatever you decide to keep testing. You don’t have to do it all at once. But you should test the most important aspects that make the most impact on your audience and your niche. Testing isn’t hard today. You can use split testing by doing it manually, and you can also use various software like Google Optimize or you can find a plugin or use analytics that is installed with each program you use.