Susan Gilbert
March 7, 2018

How Multivariate Testing Can Help Improve Your Website

How Multivariate Testing Can Improve Your Website

Do you have a lot of visitors coming to your website each day? In order to convert these leads into paying customers, it’s important to understand how well your design elements are performing.

This type of research can be done with two methods:

  • A/B testing
  • Multivariate testing

A/B Testing Vs. Multivariate Testing

Each one functions in a unique manner to provide information on not only the entire function of your website, but also each image and element of your content.

A/B testing provides you a side by side comparison of two different versions of your existing design to find out how visitors are initially responding once they arrive. Multivariate testing is used to test various elements inside each page. Wikipedia defines the process this way:

Dramatic increases can be seen through testing different copy text, form layouts and even landing page images and background colours. However, not all elements produce the same increase in conversions, and by looking at the results from different tests, it is possible to identify those elements that consistently tend to produce the greatest increase in conversions.

The Benefits of Multivariate Testing

The various pieces such as the header, layout, icons, etc., are what make your website unique. Testing these can help you gain insights on how each affects your conversion rates. Here’s an illustration put together by Canvas Flip, which shows how this works:

Let’s say you create two versions of one headline, the content and your header image, which would produce 3 different variables. Each of the three variables then has two of its own versions — these can be further tested in different combinations. Precise testing inside each element allows you to evaluate anywhere from a few to perhaps hundreds of different variations.

A/B testing provides only three or four versions of your website. And this makes it a good tool to use for a complete website overhaul. Multivariate testing gives a more precise measurement of your conversion rates. It helps you to focus on refining and improving an existing design.

Making Testing More Efficient

In order to focus on just a few portions of your website at a time, you will need to minimize each section. This creates a double number of combinations that need to be tested. For example, you would take a look at your header images and main headline, then move onto the content in a separate test.

Keep in mind that each element has a different impact on your conversion rates. For example, the footer can be removed as a variable in order to gain more profitable results.

Before beginning the process, write down a plan of action that will include the goals you would like to achieve. These could include, for example, increased traffic, higher conversion rates or improved sales pages. Once you know this information, the process can help provide a better marketing strategy such as using higher performing multimedia content in your email campaigns.

In order to get the most accurate results, your website will need to have a large number of visitors coming in. The goal is to gain better insights into who these people are and what action(s) they are taking once they arrive. For example, testing the opt-in form on a landing page against the different elements that include your header and footer.

If this all seems too technical, then you may need to hire a website developer to perform these tests for you, but this could become very costly depending on the size of your website. The good news is there are visual website optimizer tools and plugins for WordPress available, which can produce a visual presentation of your tests.

In Closing

After you have completed testing you should be able to gain the following results:

  • Errors, broken links, problematic design elements
  • The impact of each section on how many visitors are staying and making a purchase
  • Which issues need to be addressed first
  • Improving the visitor experience and navigation

It’s important to test your website at least once a year during the slow times of your business. This will enable you to stay up to date with the latest technology and graphical elements that are the most effective for attracting more subscribers.

As you combine both your A/B testing and multivariate testing you will be able to get the best results from your website design, especially you have an online eCommerce platform.

Any Comments?

Have you used multivariate testing? Do you have any success stories you can share with your fellow readers? Please comment, below.


You may also want to readSurprising A/B Testing Results from Aspiring Entrepreneurs

Featured image: Copyright: ‘‘ / 123RF Stock Photo

Sign Up For Our Mailing List

To receive more in-depth articles, videos and Infographics in your inbox, please sign up below

The following two tabs change content below.
Online Marketing with Focus - Let Susan Guide you to Online Success. Especially loves to help Authors, Speakers, Coaches & Entrepreneurs. Susan Gilbert uses her laser focus knowledge to coach and provide online marketing and social sharing programs. Author and publisher of several books including “The Land of I Can,” and “KLOUT SCORE: Social Media Influence,” Susan combines online marketing with strategic thinking. Follow her Digital Marketing Tips at her blog: