Going online to make money has almost reached the status of a fad. The phrase “Internet marketing” refers to one of the great speculations of the modern era. Stories abound about individuals making gargantuan amounts of money per month. Unfortunately, most of these stories are either fallacious or false. The Internet has led to the revamping of traditional business models, but Internet marketing is not a road to quick riches. Despite the prevalence of such thinking, bloggers do make money online. They earn profits by selling goods or services as proprietors or affiliates and also by serving as advertising affiliates.
Bloggers can make money by increasing the number of visitors who buy their products and services or click on an ad. They have to increase their effectiveness at meeting this goal to grow their profits. A blogger can use a metric called the conversion rate to measure how effective their blog is at making money. Dividing the amount of visitors by the number of customers yields a percentage rate. This rate represents how many visitors are being persuaded to take some action beneficial to the blogger. A higher conversion rate translates into greater profit levels for the blogger.
Improving Conversions Through Multivariate Testing
Bloggers can take advantage of a technique called multivariate testing to improve their conversion rates. This methodology is complex in that it tests multiple versions of different site elements. Colors, text, images, headers and footers are some of the factors that a multivariate test can handle. A good test will take a group of items and combine them in different variations. Each variation is shown to the same number of visitors simultaneously, along with an unaltered version of the blog that serves as the control.
The multivariate test will produce statistical data. Analyzed quantitatively, the data will reveal which combination of variations produced the highest conversion rate. The analysis will also reveal if the data is statistically significant or not. Multivariate testing is one of the most robust forms of testing available. It can dramatically improve a blogger’s earnings by raising his conversion rate.
Creating a Test
Properly defining a goal is the first key step in creating a quality multivariate test. So many different potential angles exist for a multivariate test that it is easy to get lost in the fog of possibilities. Picking a specific goal or challenge to overcome will give a solid foundation to the test and prevent any confusion from arising about the results.
The selected goal can consist of having the visitor buy a product or a service, click on an advertisement, sign up for a newsletter or some other action. The particular elements to be tested will depend on what the goal selected is. If the goal is to have a visitor click on an advertisement, the factors to be tested include: ad placement, ad design, ad size and adcolor. Additionally, these items may need to be considered within the overall context of the other items on a blog. For instance, the color of the advertisements needs to match the overall theme of the blog.
Running a Test and Analyzing the Results
Understanding the difference between A/B and multivariate testing is crucial. A/B testing focuses on only one component of blog at a time. Also known as split testing, A/B testing revolves around presenting a clear choice between two options: A non-altered version used as a control and an altered version. Whichever version returns the highest conversion rate wins.
Multivariate testing, in addition to being more complex, is also more advantageous for the blogger. Multivariate testing reveals which part of a page does the most work in terms of improving the conversion rate. Running a test not only reveals which combination of variations has the highest conversion rate, it also shows which specific items pull in the most visitors. This is a tremendous advantage to any blog owner. Bloggers can use tools like Google Website Optimizer to run tests and analyze the results. A high visitor number and low performance changes will produce the most reliable results. You can read more about this technique over at Maxymiser who have a multivariate testing guide and information on other types of conversion improvement techniques.