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Practice Makes Perfect: A List of Elements to Test on Your Website

March 20th, 2009 | | Conversion Optimization

Lately, we’ve been writing on conversion optimization. As I’ve said before, you can expertly implement all of the advanced SEO strategies you can think of, but if your site isn’t providing a great user experience and grabbing your audience’s attention, you are doing yourself a disservice. How do you know if you are providing a good user experience? Start testing each element of your landing page and/or website!

Every aspect of your website/landing page has the potential to help or hinder your performance. There is only one way to find out how each element of your site effects your overall results, and that is through testing. Need some ideas on what to test? Here is a list of items to test that can enhance the user experience and deepen their engagement, while increasing your conversion rate.


One of the first things someone sees  is the headline on your landing page/website. From the first second someone is on your site, you need to convince them that they are in the right place. Your headline is a great way to speak to this new user quickly and directly. Ask yourself, what is the core concern or solution that someone may be seeking when they arrive at my site? Use your headline needs to provide a solution right away!

But don’t write just one headline. Try out a series of headlines to see which version grabs user’s attention and enhances your overall performance.


Let’s face it: most people scan a website before they actually stop to read the majority of the message. This means that users first get an impression of the site, and if they like the first impression, then they’ll stick around to explore and deepen their comprehension of what you have to offer.

To boost your website’s appeal during this “impression stage” you should test different images on your site. Images are a quick way to communicate with users about the identity of your company and products, without using any words. Some users appeal best to images of other people, some users prefer pictures of products. This will be different for every site but it’s worth testing!

Page copy

Once you have engaged the user past the “impression stage” then you really need to bring it home with your copy. Test out multi-variant messages that highlight different texts. Here is a quick list of copy elements you can test:

  • Try using a list of benefits
  • Try using testimonials
  • Try using longer copy
  • Try using shorter copy
  • Try using copy that is “emotionally” based
  • Try using copy that speaks to price competitiveness
  • Try using copy that highlights product benefits

…and the list goes on and on!

Call-to-action buttons

The variations you can test for your call-to-action button (the actual “submit” button for your contact /purchase form) are endless. You can test different variations of texts, shapes, sizes, colors. Different buttons will appeal to different audiences so you need to test which one works best for you.

Contact forms

Is your contact form too short? Too long? Are you asking for extraneous information that is not critical to the sales process? There are some industries that require a long, thorough contact form, and some industries need the form to be as short as possible. If your contact form *could* be shortened without effecting your lead quality or lead flow, you should test this element of  your site.

Unfortunately, I don’t know which of these will work for  your site because I don’t know your site or audience (sorry). And you may think you know what’s working best but how do you really know until you test?

What’s the best way to conduct this kind of testing? Good question! But (gasp!) you’ll have to wait until next time when I’ll give you some details on how to launch multi-varient testing on your site! What do you now? Think about what elements of your site you want to test (all of them!) and then we’ll discuss how to get the testing ball rolling!

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