What Should I Test on My Landing Pages?

A/B testing is both an art and a science. It’s also very unpredictable. Most marketing departments, usability specialists, designers and management rely on a mixture of experience, gut instinct and personal opinion when it comes to deciding what will work better for their customers. Be prepared to throw all the boardroom conjecture out the window and start achieving real insight into what works and what doesnʼt – testing, like a camera, never lies.

At the end of the day, it’s your customers and your brand (your brand is what your customers think you are, rather than what you say you are) that will decide what converts the best. With that being said, there are a certain number of landing page elements that you can attack in your testing. The different variations and content that goes into the test is up to you, which one works the best (whether you like it or not) is up to the customers.

Some of the elements you should consider testing are:

  • The main headline (which typically contains a succinct rendering of your product/offer/service core value proposition).
  • The call to action (CTA) – typically the text on the button that represents your page’s conversion goal.
  • Hero shot. Try a variation of your main photo (if you have one) – preferably showing your product or service being used in context.
  • Button design. Use design principles to accentuate the appearance of your CTA (contrast, whitespace, size). Above all, try making it bigger.
  • Button color – green for go, blue for link color, orange or red for emotional reaction.
  • Form length. For lead capture and other form usage, you will want to minimize the amount of fields that visitors are required to complete. However, if you have a particularly strong need for data, try running an A|B|C|D|E test with varying amounts of information gathering. This way you can make an informed decision about what abandonment rate is acceptable when weighed against the extra data produced.
  • Long copy vs. short copy. Often shorter is better, but for certain products detail is important in the decision making process. Test it and see.