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Internet Marketing - If You Aren't Testing, You're Missing The Boat

Jan 5, 2008
Some Internet marketing people slap up a web page, send traffic to it and forget it. They make some sales, so they're happy. But here's the deal... Every day that you aren't testing your pages, you're losing money.

OK, so how does testing work?

The simplest form of testing, whether for Internet marketing or offline marketing, is known as A/B split testing. This means that you test one page against another. For Internet marketing, it woks like this: You show page 1 to visitor 1 and page 2 to visitor 2, and page 1 again to visitor 3, and the pages are rotated like this evenly. After some time has passed, one page should be a clear winner, and it becomes your "control" page. Then, you continue to test other pages against it.

It's important that you only test one element of your Internet marketing web pages at a time. Otherwise, you won't know what worked and what didn't. You should probably test your headline first. So, you rewrite your headline completely, and you put it atop your second web page, with all other elements of that page remaining the same. Just keep testing headlines, until you're happy that you have one that converts, and then test another element of your page, such as your bullet points, your call to action, or your offer. Just keep testing elements one by one, until you have a combination that works well, and then, test some more. Testing never stops.

An easy way to do A/B split testing for Internet marketing businesses is by using a rotator. You put both of your test pages into the software and it rotates them for you. You get a special URL from the rotator to use, so that you only need advertise one URL at any given time. You can buy software that will allow you to build your own rotators or you can use an online version, such as PageSwirl, to rotate the pages for you.

You will need a way to collect statistics, however, and Google has a great free tool called Analytics. You will need to put a bit of code into the HTML of your web page, but it's pretty easy to do and the site provides instructions.

There's also a more sophisticated method of testing offered by Google called Website Optimizer. This free program allows you to test various elements of your web pages all at the same time, and it collects the statistical information for you. This is a bit tougher to set up, and if you don't know HTML, you may need someone to set it up for you. Yet, if you're in a hurry, Optimizer is a much quicker way to see your results.

Testing should the most important part of your Internet marketing strategy. If you aren't testing, you're losing money and wasting time. Start with some simple A/B testing and see what works best for you. You can switch to Google Optimizer later on, when you're feeling more sure about the whole Internet marketing scene.
About the Author
Tellman Knudson is CEO of Overcome Everything, Inc. and a master of Internet marketing and list building. Pick up his free CD, a Free month in The List Building Club, and a one-on-one consultation when you visit http://listbuildingpower.net
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