Can you tell me what Google’s Website Optimizer is and if one should bother trying to figure it out or not. In essence, what’s it all about and what can it do for me?
Google Website Optimizer is a tool that allows you to test the copy, headings, calls to action, and images that are used on landing pages to assess what works best to convert visitors and maximize your return on investment. Website Optimizer allows you to test multiple variations of a landing page so you can see what your website visitors are responding to the best. For example, you can test whether people respond better to a graphic image or a photo. See what headlines drive the most conversions. Google will then provide you with a report that will help you determine what changes should be made to your website based on what people are favorably reacting.
Website Optimizer can test any page of your site, including the landing page for pay-per-click campaigns.
Google Website Optimizer is currently in its beta stage and you have to be considered to participate in the test. If you are accepted, there are a couple of steps you must take. First, you need to pick a web page that you want to test. Then, you will choose a page that is going to represent your conversions. Do you want someone to fill out a contact form? If, so this would be your conversion page. Once you have determined these pages, make variations to your test page and set up your Website Optimizer account. Once you have launched the “experiment”, Google will begin doing research. Once they are done collecting date, they will provide you with a report of their findings. The report will display the different page variations and show you what worked best at converting.
In order to use Website Optimizer, you will need to set up a Google AdWords Account and Google Analytics. If you do not currently have Analytics, this will be set up automatically when you set up a Website Optimizer account.
Should you bother to try Google Website Optimizer? If you don’t have a web analytics program that allows you to test your website, and you were able to enroll, I would say yes. Heck, it’s a tool that is going to take SOME of the guesswork out of what is helping to convert visitors and what can be improved. Testing is going to give you a better grasp of what visitors are attracted to and what they aren’t. You can then use this data to create better performing landing pages. After all, what you THINK may be a great landing page, may not be!