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The Essential Guide to Facebook Ad Split Testing

The Essential Guide to Facebook Ad Split Testing

As you plan your Facebook marketing strategy, how do you decide between one image style or another? Or find out what sort of ad copy your leads prefer? You could guess blindly, but you’ll be better off with split testing.

Split testing (or A/B testing) is the practice of sending out different ads to different sections of your audience. So Group A gets ad one and Group B gets ad two. From there, you can see which ad performed better, which informs the rest of your advertising strategy going forward.

Why is split testing worth it? How do you make an effective split test? I’ll go over the answers to those questions and more in this guide to creating successful Facebook ad A/B tests!

Why Bother?

For many people new to the idea, split testing seems like a waste of time and resources. Who wants to write double the ad copy and generate twice as many images? Well, as it turns out, you do.

Split testing has become an advertising best practice across the industry for a lot of reasons, but in short, it makes sure that your ad campaign is on the right track.

For starters, it’s an essential part of overall better marketing. If it turns out you’ve been appealing to people with the wrong angle, then you need to change that direction ASAP. Once you’ve made these corrections, you’ll probably see your web traffic, engagement and conversion rates all increasing.

This then translates to increased ROI. Basically, $100 of subpar ads may only generate half the attention that $100 of tested and optimized ads gets you. It’s a bit of extra effort now for increased effectiveness and revenue later.

So you know why you should be split testing your Facebook ads, but how do you get started?

Have a Goal and Expectation

Before you start writing up any ad copy, you need to determine what you want to test. Do you want to try a new headline style, or maybe you want to see what kinds of images perform best with your audience? Whatever it is, set one thing to alter. That way you’ll know exactly what changed your audience’s reaction between the ads.

This is where marketing and science start to blend. Form a hypothesis! Which ad do you think will perform better? Why? During this step, you’ll also want to establish what a successful split test will look like for you. If you’re advertising for your online store, maybe a 7% increase in site visits is a good goal for you.

Create the Ads

Now, draft your two ads with the one major difference. And really, it needs to be a MAJOR difference!

For example, let’s say you’re marketing for a gym and you decided to test the images used for your ads. You’re not going to have meaningful results if your first ad has a picture of a smiling, fit woman stretching and your second ad features a smiling, fit woman lifting weights. They’re just too similar to tell you anything important.

Instead, you might have your first ad feature the same woman sitting down, but your second ad could feature shots of your equipment or pictures of healthy foods and protein powders. This way, when one ad performs better than the other, you’ll know it isn’t just a coincidence!

Send Them Out and Analyze the Data

Now, publish your two Facebook ads and see what happens. Set which metrics you want to track based on your goals for this test, and may the better ad win!

Let the ads run for a set amount of time, however long your ads usually take to see optimal engagement, then step back and look at your results. If one ad outperformed the other, use this information as you plan your ads in the future!

If there weren’t significant results, don’t be discouraged! Make sure you made substantial changes between the ads or (if worst comes to worst) test a new part of your ads! There’s always something to improve on, and these tests are important to optimizing your processes.

Test, Test, Test!

The only way to improve is to identify problem areas, so get to work! You’ve got nothing to lose by testing, and a whole lot of revenue to gain!

Would you like to discuss your unique Facebook ad strategy? Schedule your free consultation with the marketing experts at The Go! Agency!

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