45 Awesome Posts on A/B, Multivariate, and Usability Testing

By , December 7th, 2011 in A/B Testing | 26 comments

Think your opinion is right? Maybe, maybe not! And if you don’t test it, it’s basically all conjecture. These 45 posts from 2011 will teach you all you need to know about A/B testing, multivariate testing, and usability testing for copy, design, landing pages, PPC, and much more.

Add your own awesome links in the comments. (And if you don’t bookmark this post – Oli will track you down and do it for you #JustSayin).

A/B Testing Introductions, Basics, & General Guides

  1. A Beginner’s Guide to A/B Testing – The wealth of trackable information on everything you do makes continual optimisation a reality for even the smallest businesses. One of the simplest and most effective ways of doing this is A/B testing or split testing as it’s sometimes known.
  2. Ultimate Guide to A/B Split Testing – Articles, Tips, Case Studies, Tools and Resources – There are plenty of useful tools which cost you nothing. Continue reading to find comprehensive guides on A/B split testing, exciting case studies, useful tools and resources.
  3. 5 Ways to Screw Up Your A/B Test – Test the Yahoo-style homepage (lots of information with a portal feel) against the Google-style homepage (you can do one thing, and one thing only).
  4. A Beginner’s Guide To A/B Testing: An Introduction – Well-planned A/B testing can make a huge difference in the effectiveness of your marketing efforts. Narrowing down the most effective elements of a promotion, and then combining them, can obviously make your marketing efforts much more profitable and successful.
  5. Why Split-Testing is Like Sex in High School – Split-testing is something at which even those who are doing it don’t have much experience, and their actions are often controlled by impulses and urges, rather than skilled intent.
  6. Split Testing Made Easy – Two shortcuts for fast tracking your split testing and three things to test first.
  7. The Importance of Split Testing a Prospect Conversion System – The importance of testing a prospect conversion system should not be overlooked as this should significantly increase your bottom line and can reduce advertising expenses.

A/B Testing for Website Design & Copy

  1. Usability and A/B Testing – A Special Relationship – Website optimization teams are so much more effective when UX Consultants and AB/Multivariate Testing experts work closely together.
  2. A/B Testing: Taking Your Website From Good to Great – A/B Testing is smart marketing. And it can take your website from good to great. Simply develop two versions of a concept, test, measure, tweak. Go do it!
  3. How To Analyze A/B Tests Using Google Analytics – Make the most out of your Google Analytics implementation so that you can understand the bigger picture of your test (independently of which testing tool you are using).
  4. A Beginner’s Guide To A/B Testing: Exceptional Web Copy – There are a ton of things you can test on your site to see what’s most effective. Besides design elements, there are things like headings, calls-to-action, and your specific offers. Proper testing of these things can triple or even quadruple your conversion rates—and sometimes multiply them even more!
  5. 30 Reasons to Use AB Split Testing for Conversion Optimization – In case you need some more reasons to get started right now, here are 30 reasons you should start using A/B Testing for Conversion Optimization.

A/B Testing Landing Pages & Email

  1. 23 A/B Split Tests that Get More Subscribers for Your Email List – 23 tests you should run with a squeeze page. We’ll start with the five tests you should do first. Then we’ll go over another eighteen to run after them.
  2. A Beginner’s Guide to A/B Testing: Effective SEO Landing Pages – A/B testing SEO landing pages can be more tricky than testing an email or pay-per-click campaign, especially when you are using a tool like Google Website Optimizer. There are a few precautions you should take to make sure you obtain accurate test results and to not damage your previous SEO efforts.
  3. A Beginner’s Guide to A/B Testing: Email Campaigns That Convert – Run A/B tests when trying out new techniques or formats for your email campaigns. Improving conversion rates here can make a bigger difference in your bottom line than many other marketing efforts, especially those of similar cost.
  4. 3 Low Hanging A/B Testing Opportunities To Increase Conversion Rate – It’s true that testing all parts of a landing page is the only way to optimize conversions but many times, there are low hanging optimization opportunities that can be addressed right away.
  5. Are You Making These 3 Common Conversion Testing Mistakes With Your Sales Copy – If you have gone to all the trouble to set up business, brand yourself, get a website designed and pay for a copywriter, but then you haven’t thought about testing – then that really is ‘a fumble in the end zone’.

A/B Testing for E-Commerce

  1. 4 Areas To A/B Test For E-Commerce Websites – The potential for A/B testing is enormous because of the sheer number of variables that these stores can experiment with: search results, product categories, pricing, product images, ratings, etc.
  2. Thomas Cook and TravelTainment Increase Conversion Rate by 33% Using A/B testing The decision was made to run an A/B test in which the original page (A) was tested against an alternative (B). In the design of the alternative page Thomas Cook and TravelTainment focused on reducing the length of the page. Here are the results.

A/B Testing for PPC

  1. A/B Testing in PPC – A quick look at A/B testing your PPC campaign, how to get started and five A/B testing best practices.
  2. A Beginner’s Guide to A/B Testing: Better Pay-Per-Click Ads – PPC testing is simpler than many other kinds of A/B tests, partly because there are fewer things to test. But that doesn’t mean any less care and planning should go into preparing and executing these tests.
  3. How To Use ACE For Landing Page Testing With Minimal Risk – If the new landing page doesn’t perform well, you run the risk of poor quality of conversions for half the traffic. There are many ways one can overcome this, but they tend to be cumbersome to set up and also make the testing process complicated. The Google Adwords Campaign Experiments (ACE) platform offers a nice way to execute these landing page experiments.

Social A/B Testing

  1. How to Increase Traffic with Social A/B Testing – If you want to find the maximum amount of followers, increase click through rates on your shares, attract the maximum amount of traffic via social shares and build a tighter network of influencers, you’ve got to optimize your public face.

A/B Testing vs. Multivariate Testing

  1. A/B and Multivariate Testing – The conversion rate can spell the difference between success and failure. Even if a website’s traffic volume is not very significant, a high conversion rate can turn this low volume into large profits.
  2. How and When to Move from A/B to Multivariate Testing – A/B testing tests two pages. Multivariate testing is able to test two or more pages and changes to multiple elements on those pages in the same test.
  3. A/B Split Testing vs. Multivariate: Pros & Cons – There is an ongoing debate between proponents of Multivariate (MVT) testing and A/B Testing (aka, Split Testing or A/B/n Testing, where the “n” stands for any number of variations in a test) over which method gets better results. Which of the two primary testing methods should you employ?
  4. Split Testing Your Website – An Introduction – Should you split test your website for the best conversion rates? Check out this introduction to A/B and Multivariate Split Testing.

Multivariate Testing

  1. Multivariate Testing 101: A Scientific Method Of Optimizing Design -In multivariate testing, you split traffic between these eight different versions of the page and see which combination produces the highest conversion rate — just like in A/B testing, where you split traffic between two versions of a page.
  2. A 4 Step Multivariate Testing Process That Works – Multivariate testing, with its many combinations, creative needs and more demanding implementation, is a great place for larger organizations to implement more rigorous processes around testing.
  3. Multivariate Testing for Freelancers – If you’re involved in a very competitive online market multivariate testing should be an integral part of your marketing strategy to ensure that you’re heard above the competition. It also ensures you’re getting the most out of your marketing dollars–if you double your conversions you’ve essentially doubled your revenue as a result of conducting some simple tests.

Testing Tools

  1. Comprehensive Review Of Usability And User Experience Testing Tools – Free, freemium and premium tools are out there, with options for most budgets. The important thing is to find a tool or service that works for your website and then use it to gather real-world data on what works and what doesn’t, rather than relying purely on instinct or abstract theories.
  2. 20 Free Online Tools for Website Speed Testing – We all should be aware by now that Internet users are impatient when it comes to waiting for a web page to load. Thus, your website’s performance and ability to render speedily is critical to its usability and, ultimately, its success. In order to help you build faster websites and identify troublesome website performance bottlenecks, consider incorporating some of the following tools.
  3. Formstack Makes A/B Testing Idiot-Proof, Even for Me – A/B testing has historically been a bit confusing and mystical, like Professor Snape combined with an Excel spreadsheet. A/B Testing is now idiot-proof, thanks to new landing page design technology from Formstack.
  4. SERP Turkey: A Free Tool to Split-Test and Gather CTR Analytics of SERP Entries – SERP Turkey allows you to enter a keyword for a search, import the search results from Google for that search and then edit each entry’s title, description/snippet, display URL and re-order them as you see fit. You can create multiple variants of the SERPs for split testing, or you can just keep to one and measure the CTR distribution.
  5. Essential Online Tools for Testing Your Websites – A collection of 15 essential tools to test a website for seo, accessibility, compatibility and performance.
  6. Useful Web Usability Testing Tools – With the increasing competition in sites and apps, there are also an ever increasing number of tools to help you make your site or app more usable, and to help you ensure you provide a great experience for your users.

Usability Testing

  1. An Extensive Guide To Web Form Usability – Guidelines have been crafted from usability testing, field testing, website tracking, eye tracking, Web analytics and actual complaints made to customer support personnel by disgruntled users.
  2. Steve Krug on Usability Testing at the Conversion Conference – Steve Krug gave an inspiring and enlightening Keynote presentation at Conversion Conference NY 2011, and we captured his wisdom using Instagraph technology for your viewing pleasure.
  3. Usability Testing – Beyond Google Analytics – While basic Analytics packages such as Google’s offer a lot of insight into the customer’s interaction with the website, they still don’t tell the entire story. There is much more useful information to be garnered.
  4. Usability Testing With Card Sorting – Card sorting is a usability methodology that has been used by information architects for years to organize web designs and web content more effectively. It involves placing content, groups, keywords and the like on physical note cards and allowing study participants to move the cards into groups to see how the cards can be organized into categories.
  5. The Website, the Webcam, and the Test Plan: Simple and Exciting Website Usability Testing – The author shares with you the simple video-enhanced usability testing procedure used on their website, what they found, and what they’re going to do next.
  6. What You Need to Know About Usability – When you publish a website, no matter who your target audience is, everyone will have the chance to see it and use it. This means you need to adapt your website to common sense, making your navigation, content structure, image and font size, font-family, colors, etc, as generic and easy to use as possible.
  7. Improving Usability with Fitts’ Law – Fitts’ law is a model for helping you optimally design the size and location of user interface elements. Learn about Fitts’ law by reading this article.
  8. Usability Testing: What You Need To Know – Usability testing is often a misunderstood part of the web design process. While most designers, developers and business owners these days have the idea of what
  9. Do Mobile Usability Testing Yourself – Mobile usability testing is the need of the century. Sounds, a bit overboard but no, with more and more mobile devices overtaking your browser share in Analytics, its not any exaggeration telling that mobile usability testing is absolutely essential.

Now it’s your turn – what have been your favorite posts this year about all forms of testing? Please share your favorites in the comments below! If you don’t comment you’re a sissy (challenge set)…

– Kristi Hines (with color commentary from Oli)

This is a guest post, all opinions are those of the author.

Kristi Hines is a social media enthusiast and blogger at Kikolani which focuses on blog marketing topics including blogging tips and social networking strategies. She also contributes to many other sites as a freelance writer covering online marketing topics for businesses including search and social marketing optimization. When she's not on the computer, her personal hobbies include photography, tennis, and salsa dancing!

Comments

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  3. Jim says:

    All great points and in my opinion Usability Testing is critical. I use a live User Testing Service (such as http://www.usertesting.com) to see what real website users really think while they use my websites. I am always amazed at what I learn.

  4. Great resources, thanks. Here are some of my usability favourites, including testing:
    http://amas.ie/usability-essentials/

  5. url says:

    Gr8t post.Thank you for sharing

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  10. Chris Stolz says:

    Wow this is awesome! Thanks for this.

    The other site that I would toss into the mix is http://www.whichtestwon.com which has a huge archive of A/B tests to go through.

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  13. Nyt link says:

    Vamos a hacer mucho con un spilttest A/B pero simplemente sería que el sistema funciona con rapidez también en España y Dinamarca.

  14. […] text size and phrasing) to see what gets the best customer response. There are hundreds of free online resources that give lessons on just […]

  15. Justin says:

    These are some really good links. The copy ones in particular are useful to me, because I kinda suck at web copy lol.

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