Why Did This Split Test Fail? Price Point or World Events?

This may not seem like a “copywriting” issue at first, but you will quickly see that it could be. Either way, it’s something I think you should know about. Elements like this, can easily improve conversion rates for copy you write. Your copywriting clients may send you a nice bonus cheque in appreciation…

Over the period covering the end of September and the beginning of November I executed a split-test on copy I wrote (over a year ago) for one of my alternative health clients.

Up until this most recent split-test the online copy routinely produced an average of $2.25 in sales for every $1 spent on generating traffic.

Not bad, for a front end product, eh?

The copy promotes the ebook (plus other digital bonuses) for $37 and upsells to the audio version for an extra $10.

I decided to test changing the price points from $47/$37 to $37/$27. Maybe it would produce even more sales and a higher conversion.

The result: Sales dropped by 60%!

Could a $10 difference make such a difference?

Possibly. Maybe the higher perceived value resulting from the $37/$47 tipped enough extra people into buying.

Another possible cause: I ran this test at the same time that the U.S. government declared financial collapse and deliberated over their $750 billion bail out package.

Possibly the price change had nothing to do with the decrease in sales. Instead, the split-test may have been a victim of bad timing. Consumers who visited the site were in “don’t spend-a-dime” mode.

My client, however, didn’t want to continue the split-test any longer. He already LOST money for the first time since we launched the copy last December. The cost of traffic outweighed the return on sales by a little.

(Personally, I didn’t care. I didn’t see the point, in the first place, of making money on the front end.)

Either way — price point or recession — editing the copy could help either issue.

Here’s what I mean….

If the price point caused the problem: Then I need to edit the copy to JUSTIFY the lower price. It may be out of place simply dropping $10 when I wrote the copy strategically for a higher price point.

I’m sure we’ve all had an experience where a sales person or copy positioned a product so well — and then shocked us with too low a price point. In such cases, we wonder, “If this is so great, WHY not charge more for it?” It suddenly lost its value.

A REASON for the lower price point needs to be given. A truthful reason. Even something like, “We know this is your first time purchasing from us and we want to make it as risk-free and easy a decision as possible.”

Now, if concerns over a financial crisis caused the lower-conversion rate, the copy likewise needs to address these new objections in prospects’ minds (about spending/saving money).

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