Before we get started
As I have already written about, to be a great and in-demand Internet marketer requires not just LEARNING, but TESTING and NETWORKING.
Learning gives you ideas and fundamentals.
Testing builds experience and opens opportunities that you cannot find any other way.
Having a good network of colleagues that are also testing compounds the other two. After all, one human or one organization can only test so much. When you learn from the tests of others, you compound your skills.
What are Tests?
So, what exactly is a test? That word can mean many different things to different people. A scientist may have a standard procedure for determining and documenting a hypothesis, developing a plan for testing, establishing a baseline, and preserving the control to compare the test to.
A doctor, computer programmer, and a school teacher may have completely different concepts of what a “test” is.
For the sake of Internet marketing, tests typically do not need to be elaborate. For many, simply “trying” something is considered running a test. If it works, we know. After all, Internet marketing is not like other forms of marketing like branding. There is plenty of data. Often, too much data.
For me and my purposes, tests are a little more than just trying something. I don’t just try things and check later to see if they work, although I do that also. (I think all marketers do that.)
My tests involve looking at past data to see what has been the history. I then determine what will likely happen if I do nothing. Then, I develop a plan for doing something different and determine what I THINK will happen and when. All of these parts are documented in advance of the test. All of this is given a schedule and due dates. This means I can check the test along the way and know when it is over. Therefore, I can determine if the test was a success or not, and why.
My goal for the back half of 2020 is to get better at planning and documenting these.
Today’s Example – The setup
My Amazon test for Q3 is using my Colleced Foods LLC brand. This is a business that I share with three partners, including a professional chef in NY. I cannot share the actual numbers, but suffice it to say that it has been a side project for all of us and the profits so far have been nothing to write home about, even after several years.
Given this, I documented what our profits (based on Helium10 data) have been so far this year. I also calculated our profit margin. I noticed our profits have increased by 25% from May to June. This is due to a new release that has a good margin. But it is also due to the new efforts I’ve been putting into programmatic PPC advertising.
For our Amazon PPC ads, we’ve started using Zon Tools. They have automated rules that monitor campaigns all day every day and adjust based on results. Using this has uncovered some amazing opportunities for this newest launch.
The Actual Test
Given that the programmatic PPC has worked on a small scale to improve profits, it is now time to test it on all fronts to see if we can scale our other products, which have very different characteristics.
Before starting, I determined our current profits for the last several months and therefore what we can expect moving forward. I also set an expected goal of doubling our profits from May to July. I would like to increase by another 20% in August.
The automated bidding was all set up last night for this test. I will monitor and continue to check the results.
POSTSCRIPT UPDATE: August 13, 2020
July ended up doing well. Our sales were up by 72%, so we did not quite double our profits as hoped for. We were still quite pleased with the growth.