Crocs, Aritzia Use A/B Testing to Optimize E-Commerce Businesses
You hear it over and over again — test, test, test — but how many of you are actually following that advice? Testing is a critical component to website optimization, and two companies that have taken heed of this fact are casual footwear retailer Crocs and women's fashion apparel brand Aritzia.
In a session yesterday at the Demandware XChange conference in Las Vegas, Scott Keller, senior web developer at Aritzia, and Haley Nemann, senior manager of global e-commerce user experience at Crocs, discussed how their brands are using A/B testing to increase sales, decrease costs and increase customer engagement.
At Aritzia, testing is used to prove (or disprove) a hypothesis. For example, the Vancouver, Canada-based retailer recently tested whether making its "Add to Bag" buttons on its product detail pages would drive more clicks to checkout. The prevailing thought at the brand was that it would. The test ran for four weeks, and its audience was segmented 50/50 for those who saw the larger button vs. those who saw the standard-size button.
The results came in after four weeks and Aritzia's hypothesis proved true — having a more visually dominant "Add to Bag" button led to more people clicking it and advancing on to checkout. Consumers in Canada clicked on the larger button 3.97 percent more than the smaller button, and visitors in the U.S. clicked on the larger button 2.93 percent more.
The test required just one day to two days of development time and was deemed a success, said Keller. Even if a test doesn't yield the result you thought it would, it can still provide valuable data that can help guide decisions, he added.
For example, a test in which Aritzia's hypothesis proved to be wrong was the value of adding a mini summary to its bag/cart page. The retailer theorized that the percentage of visitors who would leave the purchase funnel would increase by adding a mini summary to its bag page. Aritzia tested this and found the opposite to be true — 3 percent more people who saw the mini summary completed their purchase.