Website design and layout greatly contributes to the traffic and click out rate of a homepage. Several studies presented results that prove this.
The A/B testing conducted by sim-only.co.uk after it collaborated with the leading multivariate testing expert, Maximyser, is one of the most significant experiments that revealed the impact of website layout variations in the success of a page.
Four different variations of the homepage were created.
Version 1 – Vertical Phone
This variant integrates a vertical arrangement of iPhone and Blackberry brands. The links were arranged according to popularity. Clicking on each brand would take the user to a separate page. Checkboxes are also included in the layout to allow users to choose more than one brand simultaneously. Phone images serve as the icons.
Version 2 – Horizontal Phone
This is almost similar to the first version, save for the brands arranged horizontally across the page.
Version 3 – Vertical SIM
In this variant, the iPhone/Blackberry brands are arranged vertically on the right side of the page. The links were ranked according to popularity. Instead of mobile phones, images of SIM cards were used as icons.
Version 4 – Horizontal SIM
It is still mimics the vertical version, but notice that the brands are arranged horizontally across the page. The iPhone and Blackberry brands were displayed according to popularity. Images of SIM cards were used instead of mobile phone images.
How each variant made a difference?
An average person without knowledge on multivariate testing may argue that these versions are practically the same. But just as these variants are presented randomly to unsuspecting website visitors, researchers were able to see the significant differences in the click out rates for each design. Findings are summarized in this table:
This goes to show that sim-only.co.uk – with thousands of website traffic each month – still managed to increase its uplift, conversion rate, confidence index, and number of generations by 20%. This can be accounted for the preference of website visitors for version one.
With the other variants, it seems as though audiences are inclined to favoring vertical arrangements of the brands. Versions 1 and 3 gained 42.93% advantage over horizontal layouts. The results also show the stronger preference of clients for the mobile phone icons rather than the SIM card ones.
Trusting the Measurements
Researchers adopted an objective metric system that measures the success of the variant primarily through click out per provider. They also monitored the number of clicks in the homepage and the links included in it.
The experiment lasted for six weeks to allow more data to be obtained. This gave the study a statistical significance. It also allowed sim-only.co.uk to monitor a high confidence index at 97.66% and lower error at 10.83% for the winning design.
Experts recommend longer periods of testing when modifying the overall architecture of the website. But as soon as the test hits a statistical significance, it is imperative to adopt the changes. Prolonging the experiment may only lead to entrepreneurs losing significant clicks.
In a Nutshell…
Prioritizing the preference of the users, even in the tiniest detail of the designs, can come a long way. This has been evident from the results of this A/B test conducted. Sim Only was able to get better results by experimenting with different platforms that promises more engagement and user-friendliness. If this could be performed by online entrepreneurs, they can be sure to have more traffic. This could eventually turn to smooth flow of profits.
This post was written by Ruben Corbo, who is a freelance writer and writes for a number of online marketing websites including those that help online businesses improve A/B testing techniques to increase sales conversions. When Ruben is not writing, he’s producing or composing music for short films or other visual arts.