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The idea of greatness is purely subjective. When it comes to developing an online property that generates revenue, businesses can never really know if their efforts will produce greatness unless they undertake A/B testing.

A/B testing is simply comparing two versions of a landing page and seeing which version was more effective in attracting/retaining key traffic and ultimately leading to sales conversions. Clearly the highest performing version should be the one developed, launched and further tested.

Part of the challenge is that A/B testing often takes a backseat to more buzz-worthy marketing efforts like SEO, web analytics and usability. While not diminishing the power of SEO and analytics, A/B testing should be as much of a priority for sales and marketing as it validates the effectiveness of any new online effort prior to launch.

So, what should be tested? A/B testing extends well beyond just the aesthetics of a site. Of course each testing situation is unique, but core elements that should be covered include the ability to capture sales leads and generate revenue, the site’s call to action, headline/products descriptions, promotional offers, product pricing and much more.

As many companies and organizations invest a tremendous amount of money in their web sites, there needs to be methods for ensuring the best return-on-investment (ROI), beyond validating and tracking analytics.

A/B testing actually improves ROI and allows for the development of incremental improvements, which is critical in building a successful web property. This is an ongoing process that allows for the refining of all efforts and provides sales and marketing executives with the knowledge needed to gauge success.

Most businesses simply need to attract customers online and entice them to make a sale. Though businesses will never actually know if they have missed opportunities to capture sales leads unless they have actually tested and validated their web properties. Other wise, you are just taking shots in the dark.

Stay tuned for more posts about A/B testing on the NetLink blog. As we believe in the power of building out IT solutions that only provide true business value, the concept of A/B testing is very important. We intend to dive much further into this vital topic in the coming weeks and months.

Posted by: Myles Henderson, Developer at NetLink Resource Group