"Test Your Landing Pages With Google's Website Optimizer"If you're doing any kind of pay-per-click advertising, you need to know what's working and what isn't when it comes to your advertising campaigns. Testing and tracking needs to be your middle name. So what are we testing? Your landing pages of course. A landing page is the page someone is sent to when they click on your ad. If your landing page isn't "converting" you'll be throwing good money after bad.
A conversion is what happens when someone visits your landing page and performs a wanted action. When you test your landing pages and find out what's working, you can use that information to increase your conversions.
The problem with testing is that the software you need is generally very expensive. Well, how would you like a top notch testing solution that won't cost you a dime? Google offers a free service called "Website Optimizer" www.google.com/websiteoptimizer . It runs from within your own web browser so there's nothing to download or install.
The first step is to decide what you want to test. You can test different headlines, graphics, layouts, calls to action, long copy versus short copy - all contained on the same page, or you can create two different pages to test against each other.
If you already use Google Adwords, you can access Optimizer from within the Adwords interface. It can be found under the "myclient center".
You can choose from two types of tests:
2) MultiVariable Test- A bit more complicated, this type of test allows you to test different elements all on the same pages. For example, you could test different headlines, graphics, blocks of copy, etc.
Your landing page, (aka test page), must include some call to action. In other words, it must ask them to do something - subscribe to your ezine, buy your product or service, or download something.
Google calls each test an "experiment". There are only four steps when it comes to setting up an experiment. You'll be given some code to copy and paste onto your test page, and your conversion pages. A conversion page is where the viewer goes after performing the wanted action on your landing (test) page.
Make sure you set everything up correctly from the get- Go. If not, and you need to make a change to something, you'll have to go back and re-paste the code on all of your pages. Once the code is in place, Google's validation tool will tell you if something was not done correctly in your setup.
You can decide to test all or only a percentage of your website traffic. Keep in mind if you go with only a certain percentage of your visitors, the test will take longer to complete. Experiments can also be stopped or paused at anytime.
After your experiment starts, you'll be shown the estimated duration and number of impressions and conversions tracked. Google's graphical reports are simple and easy to read and understand. So even if you're not a math guru, you'll understand what you're looking at when viewing the test results.
Some other helpful resources to help you are:
Google's Optimizer Blog www.websiteoptimizer.blogspot.com
Website Optimizer 101- A Quick Start Guide www.tinyurl.com/yxwman
Google Analytics Blog www.analytics.blogspot.com
There is no doubt that testing and tracking your landing pages will increase your conversions. If you've been sitting on the sidelines, here's your chance to become a "landing page detective" - and the best part is, it won't cost you a dime.
Stop throwing money away and know once and for all what's working with your landing pages. Google's Website Optimizer makes it simple and easy for you to start testing. So what are you waiting for? Get out that white lab coat and wipe off those beakers - it's testing time.