How To Do An A/B Test To Improve Ad Performance

How To Do An AB


In the fast-paced and ever-changing digital landscape, it is a great risk to produce a campaign sans data. Sales and conversions are not guaranteed especially if the published ads do not resonate with the targeted audience. So, how can a brand make sure that their ads connect with the right audience and convert sales? With more and more brands entering the digital shopping platform, how can one rise above the clutter?

Advertising tools like Facebook Ads Manager and Google Analytics were developed to help brands track the performance of each ad they post. These companies and their platforms can provide data so that brands can improve ad performance by implementing A/B Tests.

But what is an A/B Test?

A/B Testing or Split Testing, as explained by Facebook, is running different versions of ads simultaneously to identify which one works best for the brand. This is done by testing or changing one variable in an ad to see which one attracts the most engagement from the target audience. Examples for the tests can be the background color, the font, the image (product or lifestyle shot) or the text.

After running the test, the platforms then collect data for reference to see how a specific template of a company’s advertisement generates more engagement than the rest.


What are the advantages of doing A/B Tests?

One of the advantages of conducting A/B Tests is that it will allow the brand to determine which ad will help best reach their target market. Small variations like color, image, text and captions can make a great impact on how the targeted audience will respond.
An interesting example would be the banners below.

So how to do an A/B test? The main difference between the two banners is the background, one is white and the other is black. Other than that, everything is similar. The banner with the white background appealed more and gained more attention from women while the other one has been received better by male audiences (results are from Facebook Ads Manager).

how to do AB testing

how to do an AB test

Another advantage of A/B testing is it will help determine the right format of a brand’s ad. The test results will provide data on which ad has more content views, adds to cart, purchases or any key performance indicators that the companies use.

Whichever one it is, the one with the higher values relating to a company’s business goals is presumed to be the better ad that will drive up the audience’s engagement. From then on, the structure of the ad can be replicated again to improve future campaigns. This allows the brand to achieve higher sales and conversions.

By finding out a template that is most effective on the brand’s target audience, improving future campaigns will now be easier. Brands will now have data to back up their future campaign plans and they will not have to figure out a new way to capture their audience’s attention.

Things to know before you start any campaign

What you have to know before you start is that your results will not happen overnight. It will require time and effort in checking to see how the different ads are performing. This also does not mean that once a brand has determined which ad better suits its current goals, it will be applicable for all marketing objectives.

It is not a one-time activity but rather a continuous effort that needs to be done from time to time. As the market changes, the ads should be prepared to adapt. So here things you have to know and do to get started:

  • Know your long-term objective:

Define what needs to achieve before doing A/B tests. Whether it be just increasing traffic on the company’s online platform or driving sales, the objective must be clear.

  • Know your key metrics for performance:

With a specific objective, the key metrics for measuring performance will follow. For instance, if the objective is to drive sales, then you would have to look at the purchases and purchases value at the Facebook Ads Manager platform.

  • Know the variations of your ads:

Identify what details to change on the ads before conducting the A/B test. Seeing which ad performs best and knowing what details it contains will let you know how to improve future ads. It is important to note that when running an A/B test, you should focus on one variable first in the whole creative and then make variations. This is so that you can determine what works best for your target audience.

  • Set a good time frame:

Determine an ideal duration for the test to reach the desired results. Running for less than three days will not give you sufficient data that you need. However, conducting the test for a month or longer is also not recommended due to it being an inefficient use of your campaign budget.

Facebook suggests that an ideal time frame for doing split tests is between three to fourteen days long, and must have a schedule of between three to thirty days long.

  • Set an ideal budget.

To run the test and guarantee good results, allocate enough budget for Facebook Ads Manager to be able to conduct your A/B test within your specified time frame and determine the winning format for your brand’s ad. If you do not have a good estimate of how much the budget should be, Facebook suggests a reasonable amount based on previous A/B Tests that were conducted using their platform and also requires a minimum budget.

It is a tedious process that some brands may not have the time and effort to focus on, and this is where hiring performance marketing agencies, like the digital agency based in Manila, Quanta Digital Inc. will be most helpful.

As an agency that specializes in helping companies drive better sales and perform better, we will help create an impactful audience-driven campaign and achieve business goals. Let us do all the work. Watch as your brand perform better over time and rise above the clutter.


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