Home » Guest Post, Miscellaneous24 February 2012

5 Steps to A/B Testing Your Email Marketing the Right Way

These days marketing through email is critical in enhancing your relationship with customers while encouraging customer loyalty and repeat business. Is your email marketing working the best it can for you? Through A/B testing, you’ll be able to identify what is currently lacking in your email campaigns so you can move in the right direction. Whether your goal is to increase newsletter signups, sales, or traffic, we’ll identify ways to enhance your marketing efforts in this article.

a/b testing email marketting
(Courtesy of mil8)

Why Should I Test?

Minor adjustments to your email campaigns can increase click-through and open rates and, subsequently, sales, traffic, and sign-up conversions. Not sure if your current template is working? Simply run some tests to figure out what is and what can be fixed. You may find benefits in the following areas after comparing two different versions:

• Increase the overall performance of your campaign through opens and clicks.
• Drive up conversions and sales.
• The satisfaction that your campaigns are meeting your subscriber’s expectations.

Knowing What to Test

There are plenty of items to run a/b tests on – the key is to test one element at a time. That way there will be no question as to what caused an increase as that variable was completely isolated. Here are the most commonly tested elements in email campaigns:

Subject Line: Try a/b testing with and without personalization to see which your target audience responds more favorably too. You may also want to uncover whether to use the companies name in the subject line, the product name, or even the subscriber’s name in discovering which gets the most clicks.

From Line: Test various options in letting the recipient know who the email is from. For instance, you can place your name in the “From” field or, alternatively, show your name plus your companies name. A/B testing will determine which gets the best response.

Time of Delivery: Do you know when your recipients are most likely to open emails? Experiment by sending them out at different times of the day. You may find sending them in the morning works better than the late afternoon.

Call to Actions: Call to actions are one of the most important elements in any marketing initiative. In eliciting users to click, try out different colors, styles, and size of buttons to see which get the favorable response.

Layouts, Colors, and Format: These elements should support your brand and leave a positive first impression.

Email Length: A/B testing will determine whether short paragraphs linking to the full story are more effective than an email of long copy.

Offers/Discount: A/B test how many products or offers should be utilized as well as product wording. For instance, will 15% off make more of an impact as opposed to save $30? If you’re an e-commerce business you’ll want the most customers to your products as fast as possible, so test regularly.

Email marketing is an effective way to reach and convert large audiences into paying customers. If you’re looking to enhance the profitability of your business as soon as possible, a/b testing can provide a formulaic method of doing so. Test the elements listed in this article on a regular basis to get the conversions you’re looking for.

The post was written by Ruben Corbo, a freelance writer who writes for multiple websites including Maxymiser which helps evolve your website and by deploying A/B testing. When Ruben is not writing he’s producing or composing music for short films or other visual arts. You can follow him on twitter.


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