For publishers, e-commerce site owners, and other webmasters looking to enhance the earning capability of their website, split testing is one of the most powerful tools you’ll have in your arsenal. For the uninitiated, split testing (or, A/B testing) is pretty straightforward: test out variations of your website to determine which performs better, and then implement the “winning” version. The goal can be just about anything that leads to your website making more money, from newsletter subscriptions to premium product signups to affiliate marketing clicks.
If you’re not convinced that A/B testing is worthwhile, Dan Taylor at The Next Web has a great summary of the benefits. If you’re looking for motivation to kick off experiments, Neil Patel has a good summary of some “obvious” tests you should be running. (And for more tips on split testing and other monetization strategies, be sure to sign up for our free email newsletter.)
There are dozens of split testing apps out there designed to help you set up, carry out, and analyze experiments with your website’s setup. If you’re feeling overwhelmed by the idea, don’t be; many of these apps are extremely easy to use for those of us who aren’t savvy developers or web marketing veterans. Below are several easy-to-use split testing tools that even novices can handle:
App #1: Optimizely
What Makes It So Easy: One of the biggest draws to Optimizely is the ease of use and the speed with which you can have experiments up and running. Optimizely experiments can be enabled on your website by inserting just one line of code; once you’re signed up, you can literally be setting up and running multiple experiments within 15 minutes.
Features: In addition to the ease of setup and use, there are some other appealing features about this product:
- Point-And-Click Experiments. You don’t need to have any coding experience to set up an Optimizely experiment; the interface allows users to change text and colors and redesign entire pages with a drag-and-drop tool.
- Advanced Targeting. Experiments can be set to run for specific periods of time and on specific pages, or you can tailor your experiments only to appear to certain types of visitors.
- Immediate Deployment. Once you come up with a statistically significant tweak, Optimizely lets you declare an immediate winner that shows to all visitors–with no dev work required.
Costs: Starts at $17/month, up to $359/month for the Gold package.
Demo: Below is a two minute overview of Optimizely.
App #2: Experiment.ly
Features: There are a few things that sets this tool apart:
- Heatmap Reporting. This visible display of user interaction gives you an easy-to-grasp display of where your visitors are clicking and how they’re interacting with your site.
- Combo Testing. Experiment.ly has a feature that creates and lets you test all possible combinations of colors, text, and images.
- Visual Multivariate Tests. If you’re looking to go beyond strict A/B testing, Experiment.ly has an interface that allows for more advanced multivariate testing. (Note: this will be relevant if your site has a significant amount of traffic.)
Costs: Starts at $27/month (10,000 visitors), up to $947/month for the Enterprise package (500,000 visitors).
Demo: Below is a quick two minute video that shows off the features of Experiment.ly.
App #3: Maxymiser
Features: Beyond the ease of use, Maxymiser has some other slick features:
- Related Products Tool. This product comes with the ability to implement a “Related Products” widget that will show your customers items they’re likely to purchase.
- Segmenting Capabilities. This app lets you cater the pages and experiments shown to visitors based on their geographic location, demographic characteristics, or past buying behavior.
- Multi-Medium Approach. In addition to a web-based testing ground, Maxymiser lets you experiment and deploy changes via email, mobile and tablet devices, and social platforms.
Costs: You’ll have to contact Maxymiser to get a quote.
Demo: Here’s a quick overview of the Maxymiser product suite.
App #4: Visual Website Optimizer
What Makes It So Easy: This app can be run without any coding or HTML knowledge. You’ll only need to add a line of code to your site once, and then you’re off to the races.
Features: Visual Website Optimizer has a few slick features that make it unique:
- Advanced Targeting Capabilities. This tool lets you run specific tests to very specific segments of your audience.
- Flexible Goal Setting. You’ll have the ability to target different variations of pages to different users, segmenting by geographic location, entrance page, and several other factors.
- Heatmap Reporting. In addition to standard performance reports, you’ll have access to heatmap reports that show where visitors are clicking on your variations.
Costs: Packages available at $49/month (10,000 visitors) and $129/month (30,000 visitors). There’s also an Enterprise version for larger testing needs.
Demo: Here’s a quick overview of Visual Website Optimizer.
App #5: Convert Experiments
What Makes It So Easy: Again, just one line of code and you’re equipped to run A/B tests. There’s even a video to walk you through getting that step done.
Features: The Convert app has several features that may other split testing apps don’t:
- Google Analytics Integration. All variations will show up as custom variables. This app can also integrate with Drupal, WordPress, CrazyEgg, LuckyOrange, Magento, Joomla, and Bigcommerce (among others).
- Multiple Domain Testing. Multiple domains can be placed in one project that has the same unique tracking code.
- Image Library. There’s a built-in image library, which can be a huge plus if you’re planning to do extensive image testing.
Costs: Starts at just $9/month (2,000 visitors) up to $1,499/month (1,000,000 visitors). There are also tiers at $139 (50,000 visitors) and $399 (200,000).
Demo: Here’s a quick overview of Convert’s tool.
If you run a website that’s already making a bit of money, split testing is one of the biggest opportunities out there for improving your earnings. Among the dozens of available tools to set up split tests are a select few that make the process dead simple for those without advanced coding skills. All of these tools require a bit of a monetary investment, but if used properly they’ll pay for themselves many times over.
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