Tag Archive for: testing

While it is always important to design a website that looks pretty and makes search engines happy, it is always better to make sure users like your site. User experience is equivalent to customer satisfaction, but unfortunately some designers only test their usability at the end of the process, if at all.

Testing usability throughout every stage of the design process possible means the end design will be completely tailored to what your visitors want. Testing in different stages can tell you what you should focus on next and what can be improved overall.

Some people confuse usability testing with A/B testing, which is comparing two different versions of a web site on a wide audience and has quantitative results. Usability testing is all about subjective experience and qualitative insights.

As Jenny Shen puts it in her article at Onextrapixel, “Through A/B testing you can find out which version performs better, but usability testing helps you know the reason behind the results or why one version was preferred over the other.”

Shen also explains every step of usability testing in her article. I suggest reading it and taking notes so that you can start implementing testing on your next design. It won’t matter if you make a nice looking site if users don’t enjoy using it.

Anyone reading this should know they should be testing their websites and landing pages, but if you aren’t well studied in optimization, how are you supposed to know what you should be testing? Oli Gardner has some suggestions to get you started testing your site.

1) Test the Headline – Your headline is the first things viewers will see when they land on your page, and to be most successful it should match what your viewer expected when deciding to visit your page. For example, you can test how positive or negative language performs in your headline, such as “Save Time by Downloading Now”  vs. “Stop Wasting Time, Download Now”.

Headlines are also used by your audience to quickly identify if the site they came to has what they want. Make sure your headline lets visitors know what you have to offer immediately. A great way to quickly test this is to just show the headline to someone unfamiliar with your brand for 5 seconds and ask them what the page was about. If they don’t know, you have a problem with your headline.

2) Test Your Forms – Most landing pages will have some sort of form trying to gain information from visitors. Its important to remember however that you should be offering something to your visitors in exchange for this information. What you offer is up to you, but examples could be an e-book, webinar registration or whitepaper.

The question remains though, how do you test to see if your forms are effective? One test would be seeing which forms people fill out the most, if all fields were made optional. The goal is to make sure you’re offering something equal to the amount of data you need. Try to be efficient and only have forms with relevant information and test different arrangements to see what visitors respond to the most.

3) Test Your Call To Action (CTA) – A call to action is your conversion. It is how you get people to do what you want them to do, and if that isn’t happening, you may need to work on your CTA. Make it descriptive, so that your visitors will know exactly what will happen if they follow the CTA,

A way to test your CTA is by changing just one word and seeing how customers respond. Unbounce found that changing the description “order information” to “get information” led to a 38.26% increase un conversions.

While these examples will get you going, if you want a more thorough guide, you’ll also want to look into Oli’s “Ultimate Guide to A/B Testing”.