A/B Testing Ideas for Email Marketing

Email marketing graphic by Sales & Marketing Technologies

October 13, 2020

Email marketing has a variety of uses from nurturing leads and increasing site traffic to promoting special offers and announcing new products. Not only is email a cost-effective communications tool, but it can also provide you a wealth of data such as open rates, click-through rates (CTR), conversions, and bounces. However, if you’re not A/B testing, it’ll be harder to improve the email’s user experience and design to generate a higher ROI.
Learn more about A/B testing and what variables you can test for a more effective email marketing campaign.

What is A/B Testing?

A/B testing (aka "split testing") is comparing two versions of something to determine the better performing version. It works by randomly separating your recipients into two groups: Group A receives the normal email and Group B receives the email with a specific variable. With A/B testing, you’re able to see whether recipients are more or less likely to take an action when presented with the variable.

7 Email Variables You Can Split Test

Even small tweaks can make a big difference which is why split testing should be a part of your email marketing strategy. We recommend testing only one variable per A/B test so it’s easier to determine the variable’s impact. If you test multiple variables at one time, it can be difficult to tell which variable contributed to the results and by how much.
Here are A/B testing ideas you can try out to fine-tune your email marketing campaign:

1. Subject lines

An email’s subject line can greatly affect open rates as it’s the first thing recipients will see. You can test the subject line’s length, word order, and personalization (i.e. including the recipient’s name) to see what gets the most attention.

2. From name

You can compare having the email’s ‘from’ name be a person's name or the name of your company to see which is more likely to drive open clicks.

3. Design

You can test a small design change or completely different templates. Keep in mind, however, that many people read emails on their phones so your design should also be mobile-friendly.

4. Visuals

This can be comparing two visuals or images vs. no images. Testing visuals is crucial for determining what kind works best for your audience. Whichever visuals you use, make sure they not distracting from the content.

5. Copy

Try different email body copy to see what gets a better response. For example, you can test the copy’s length, tone, or layout.

6. Call to action

A “call to action” (CTA) is crucial because it clearly tells recipients what the next step is, thereby increasing your email’s click-through rate. You can test your CTA by comparing button vs. text link or different copy.

7. Send times

Test specific days and times to learn when your recipients are most likely to open your emails. By finding the winning combination, you can use this data for future campaigns.

Get More Out of Email Marketing

With these A/B testing ideas, you’ll be able to create email marketing campaigns that generate higher open and click-through rates as well as decrease unsubscribers. Businesses need effective email marketing now more than ever which is why partnering with an experienced agency is a smart move to get more out of their investment.
Sales & Marketing Technologies is a digital marketing agency in the Orlando, Florida area that works with brands to develop and implement email marketing strategies that drive results. Call 407.682.2222 or contact us below for a free 30-minute email marketing consultation!

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