Are You Putting Your Online Strategy to the Test?

It’s time for my Public Service Announcement to all businesses – so here it goes:

“Are You Testing?”

That’s right.  Are you letting your website coast along on autopilot? Or..

Are you testing every step of your online sales and lead generation process as if your business’s life depended on it?  Now I won’t add my voice to the doom and gloom marketing chorus – but…

If you’re aren’t testing, you’re guessing and digital marketing is not about putting your finger in the wind and going with your gut.  Solid digital marketing strategy is built on numbers; the best numbers are unearthed through rigorous testing.

So if you’ve been lax in your “Testing” regimen, here are a few suggestions to get yourself back on track:

1. Define your web site’s goal: This isn’t as simple as it sounds.  In most organizations,  if you were to ask 10 people in your organization what your site is supposed to deliver; you’ll receive 10 different answers.  It’s difficult to achieve great results when no one can agree on success.  So, get everyone on the same page before you start.

2. Break your online conversion process into defined steps: Every site does 3 activities:1) Attracts visitors, 2) Converts visitors into leads/sales/actions.  Isolate how your web site performs these tasks and define the steps.  At Fluency, we conduct an Digital Opportunity Audit to define the steps and uncover the easy profits often hidden in them.  You’ll find that this step will pay the most immediate and long-term dividends.

3. Run ongoing split a/b tests on each step:Always be testing. Develop a plan to systematically test each step of your process.  The idea is to quickly establish benchmarks for each step and then start the process of incrementally boosting performance.

4. Implement the winners trash the losers – fast. Your testing will show you where the “dead weight” is in your sales process.  Be ruthless about performance and move quickly to eliminate creative or assumptions that are hurting performance.

Once your testing program is on track, work to make it an important part of your marketing decision-making process.  Marketing by the numbers may not be as sexy as shooting from the hip – but it is definitely more profitable.