We’re WordPress specialists and also literally wrote a book on CRO — Conversion Rate Optimization — so we were very pleased when a market leading theme developer upped their game and added A/B testing for over 30 modules (like slideshows, tabbed boxes, images, and text components) that are also part of the theme.

Split Testing with Divi

Split testing = more leads and customers.

It’s called Divi from Elegant Themes, and aside from the fact it makes layout go much faster with modular components, now with split testing (we sometimes call this “A/B” testing since it is common to test two variations of landing pages, but with this tool you can actually test several more variations) we like it so much we have been using it on all our recent projects including the new Old Town Portland site, The brand new design for Croc’s Casino Resort, and for ProtoCall Services (design by Smith Creative Group) — one of our healthcare clients.  This is cutting edge for smart content strategy.

To give you a taste for how this works, we’ll tell you three things we’re learning to really love with this split testing tool, and then present a short video overview below.  In coming articles, we’ll review what the tests have told us and how it improved bottom line results.

  • 5 Kinds of Performance Indicators:  With the Divi split testing system you can keep a good eye on what visitors don’t do (when they bounce and do not continue reading your content) and do on your pages and specific content areas.  View clicks, reads, bounces, goal engagement and “shortcode conversions” — a traditional way to count leads that end up at a separate thank you page on your site.
    The performance indicators are simple and direct... but robust.

    The performance indicators are simple and direct… but robust.

  • It’s Built into WordPress:  We have used the Nelio testing system for WordPress (it’s in our book, and we still like it) and a couple of other systems that offer plugins, but this one is perhaps the easiest and fastest for set-up we’ve seen.
  • Writers Up Their Lede Writing Game:  We always encourage new writers, and seasoned ones alike to return to basics, periodically, and write two different ledes (first paragraphs) for their articles.  The lede either grabs you or doesn’t — a huge key to content engagement.  And now, you can use Divi to test which one causes more people to continue down through a blog post — the modules work on posts as well as pages.

Testing leads to more conversions — when a visitor takes one step closer to doing business with you.  Webdirexion uses the R.A.C.E. (Reach. Act. Convert. Engage.) digital marketing formula for smart results, in part, because “convert” is one of the key strategies in this model.  Notice that “content” is not king (it’s a part of Reach, and Engage), because content that doesn’t convert in the end isn’t worth that much.

Guess what?  We’re testing this blog article.  Our testing hypothesis (always start with a hypothesis, as we detail in our book) is that one of two different subheads, each with a different “pitch” and small engagement graphic will cause more readers to engage with the rest of the content.  The two pitches are “How do you get more ledes”, versus “What if you could test every module?”  Which do you think will result in more post engagement?  We’ll report on results later — here’s how the setup looks in the WordPress admin. area:

Above we're testing which of two subheads (orange modules) will cause more readers to engage with the main article text (blue module).

Above we’re testing which of two subheads (orange modules) will cause more readers to engage with the main article text (blue module).

Results win more readership for our post

Update 8.15.16:  B Version is Winning...  There will always be one version that wins over time when you carefully craft a testing hypothesis and so your test itself.  Below, you can see the stats we are collecting and how one version of our subhead is gathering more readers for us.  Of course we like these results — plus it forces us to become better and smarter copy writers as we go:

Webdirexion Divi split test

Above the result of one Webdirexion divi lede test shows one lede clearly winning.

Short Divi Split Testing Overview Video

It’s no longer about creating a “brochure website” — if your developer isn’t including smart ways to engage more targeted visitors and convert them to leads… then contact Webdirexion.  We’ll be pleased to do an audit and teleconference with your team.

(note that Webdirexion is a marketing partner with Elegant Themes, Nelio and also for MailChimp, Hootsuite, and a couple of top hosting providers — all of which we have used for years with good results for clients and our own online marketing)

Written by Scott Frangos

Scott FrangosScott serves as Chief Optimizer on the Webdirexion team for both development and content marketing strategy, and is the author of the new book, "The Marketer's Concise Guide to CRO" (Oct. 2015). He is a career marketing communications professional with niche industry specialties in healthcare, law firms, and hotel marketing and holds recent certifications in Google Analytics Mastery (Udemy), and RACE Digital Marketing (Smart Insights). Scott has also taught business, web programming and eCommerce courses at colleges in the Portland, Oregon area. He currently teaches WordPress Content Marketing Power, an online course through Udemy, and has spoken at several Content Marketing conferences.  When he is not geeking out on a Mac, Nexus 7, or Google Chromebook, he enjoys Tai Chi, walking with his two dogs, and survives on Coffee and Pizza.

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