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Multivariate Testing for User Experience for Online Marketing College Majors

Ruben Corbo

The window to grab the visitors attention on a website is approximately 7 seconds. Everything from the design of your site, to the call to actions and navigation must work harmoniously to grab the visitor’s attention and get them further down the conversion funnel. Internet marketers have become privy to this growing demand to appeal to an audience’s interests, and are employing multivariate testing on their websites in an effort to enhance the user experience. These tests are conducted to understand what the user likes, which in turn can be used to update the website in making sound business decisions.

How the Process Begins

To thrive in the ever-changing web landscape, a business owner must always be open to change and improvement in regards to their online marketing efforts. New trends and strategies for reaching your audience are always evolving, making the task of keeping up to date a necessity. Since your audience may or may not respond favorably to these changes, webmasters often do the testing on sites so the risk of an adverse reaction is limited. The two most common type of tests are a/b and multivariate, which are similar in concept but each have their advantages and disadvantages.

Why Choose Multivariate Testing?

Both forms of testing will give you great results, however, multivariate testing is quicker and generally more efficient for large scale website. Since more changes can be implemented after each test, it accelerates the optimization process and reduces the total time needed to come up with a better version of the website. If you have a large, enterprise website, this method is recommended. In fact, eBay and Amazon use it regularly to test what visitors are responding favorably to.

Guidelines for Running Multivariate Tests

As you’ll find, conducting multivariate tests is pretty straightforward. Below you’ll find a step-by-step guide to getting started.

Site Evaluation: Review your site in determining what needs to be improved. Consult with colleagues and friends to get a second opinion – they might have spotted something you missed. Surveys are another outlet to consider in receiving anonymous opinions that are most of the time truthful. 

Test Design: Group the elements that you have from the previous step into batches. Choose one of them to run your first test on, then work on designing the variations that you will be using for it.

Test Implementation: Gather up the versions of you site and start running the tests. You can do so easily with the use of software and tools, like Google’s Website Optimizer, which is available for free online. You can also employ the services of testing companies to run the tests for you.

Results and Analysis: Once you’ve completed the tests, gather the results and interpret the best solutions for implementation on your site. Based on your evaluation criteria, implement the design that satisfied requirements, such as an increase in clicks.

Site Deployment: Once you’ve determined which variation is the better version, it’s time to roll out the changes on your actual website and proceed to conducting your next multivariate test.

As you can see, multivariate testing is a simple way to ensure the design decisions you’ve chosen for your site are making a positive impression on your audience. Through these easy steps, you’ll begin to see where the design can be improved, allowing you to focus on a more enhanced user experience that ultimately leads to a much bigger bottom line for your business.

This is a guest article from Ruben Corbo, which writes for several different topics including music, internet marketing, and digital art technology. For more information on behavioral targeting you can go to Maxymiser and read their guide which provides a lot more in depth explanation on behavioral targeting as well as other web analytics aspects for your business.

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