Testing is, without a doubt, one of the most important aspects of ecommerce marketing. Without testing, it is impossible to know whether your campaigns are on the right track. It also becomes far harder to determine whether improvements are needed.

You may find that your sales have been slow or that they have suddenly dropped. You may wonder why your abandoned cart rates never seem to lower. You may be trying to keep customers coming back after making one purchase only to vanish into thin air. If you are not testing, it becomes very difficult to answer these questions.

With that said, testing is a strategy on its own in many ways. Testing only one function or part of your store can be just as detrimental to your results as not testing at all.

Biggest Benefits of Ecommerce Marketing Testing

In this guide, we take a deeper look at testing to find out how it helps you improve your ecommerce marketing results and how you can get the most out of testing your online store.

First up, let’s take a closer look at the many benefits offered by testing. Some of the way that testing helps you grow your ecommerce marketing efforts include the following:

Improves user experience

How easily can customers find what they are looking for when they are on your online store? How do they navigate the store? Can they view products easily and return to main category pages? Can they search for products quickly and simply? Do they need to jump through hoops to sign up for an account and can they log in quickly? Do they stay logged in or do they have to go through the login process every single time they arrive? Can they add favourites or create wishlists? What about checkout? Can they complete purchases easily?

Every single one of these questions (and many others, too) should have a resounding ‘yes’ as an answer. Testing is one of the most effective ways to improve the overall experience that customers have when visiting your store online. The easier your store is to use, the easier it will be for customers to purchase.

Reduces abandoned carts

As testing removes many barriers to purchase, it also helps to reduce abandoned carts. Carts are abandoned for any number of reasons. In many cases, it can come down to factors such as a frustrating checkout process with too many steps to complete purchases. In other cases, it could be due to problems in the checkout, such as VAT being shown only at checkout rather than on product pages. Although external factors can also affect the process, it is still essential to remove as many barriers to purchase as possible.

Testing offers a way to find out why shopping carts are frequently abandoned before payment. You may find that it is something small and easily fixed – a technical glitch or a step or two that can be removed. You may find that your entire checkout process needs to be improved. Whatever you find, testing will help you make improvements that simplify purchases.

Builds trust and loyalty

Trust and loyalty are earned. If customers have a positive experience shopping at your store, they are more likely to return. Likewise, if they have a poor experience, they will very likely not return. They may be likely to leave a negative review, however. There are many factors that determine trust, loyalty, and reputation in ecommerce marketing. These range from overall user experience to security, customer service, and overall delivery on expectations.

Testing helps you build trust, by eliminating potential issues that could affect the way that customers view your store. You may find that small things such as trust seals, guarantees, exchange policies, and chatbots make a massive difference.

Enhances accessibility

You should also be testing for accessibility. Can your store be accessed from smartphones and tablets? Are there any differences between desktop and mobile versions? Does your store have complete functionality, regardless of the device? Is there room for improvement across mobile or desktop versions of your store? Have you tested mobi versions of your store?

The greater your accessibility, the better chance your ecommerce marketing results will be. This is especially true with multi-channel strategies that incorporate mobile marketing and other strategies. The greater the accessibility, the more easily customers will be able to be targeted across any platform.

Getting the Most From Ecommerce Marketing Testing

Now that we have covered some of the most important benefits of testing for ecommerce marketing conversion, it’s time to look at some of the best practices to get the most from testing. While there are many, many testing approaches and strategies, these tips below will govern every type of testing done on your online store.

Test thoroughly

At the start of this guide, we mentioned the fact that testing one single aspect of your store does about as much good as not testing at all. The reason for this is that online stores do not comprise one single part. Instead, they are made up of many parts that work together. For example, your product pages are made up of product images, product descriptions, product specifications, related products, and other elements such as price, add to basket, add to favourites, and various other features.

Then you have your category pages and your subcategory pages, your shopping cart, your search tool, your navigation, your checkout, and other elements. You also have your ecommerce marketing platforms and campaigns – social media, SEO, SEM, lead generation, email marketing, mobile marketing, and various other channels. Every single aspect of each element needs to be tested in order to get the full benefit of testing.

Test frequently

You cannot test once or twice and call it a day, either. Testing should be done on a regular basis, when making any updates to your online store or your marketing campaigns, when launching new products or planning new campaigns, when adding new categories, and any other changes or even on a routine basis.

Testing frequently helps you stay on track, knowing that you are consistently working towards conversion. It also helps to increase customer retention, allowing you to provide the best possible experience and service to your customers, year after year. This, in turn, helps to increase trust and grow your reputation.

Test logically

Finally, it is also important to take a strategic, logical approach to testing. Testing should be done methodically. It should be focused on various aspects of the shopping experience, from the online store itself to your campaigns. Each area should be tested in the best way possible.

For example, you may find that split testing is the best approach for ecommerce marketing campaigns to test email subject lines, social media posts or Google Ads. For product page optimisation, you may find that heat maps offer the best way to determine where customers look when arriving on product pages.

Improve Your Ecommerce Marketing Results

Ecommerce is not about short-term, quick-fix results. It is about the ongoing improvement and consistent efforts to improve conversion and customer retention. Investing in your campaigns and online store is the best way to see real results that affect your bottom line. Take the time and effort to test your store and campaigns and you will start to see an improvement in your ecommerce marketing results.

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