32 creative split tests you can try today for your email marketing

When it comes to email split testing most email marketers don’t go beyond subject-line or perhaps day-of-the-week testing. Testing your email creative can significantly increase conversions and click-throughs. Unless you try different options you will likely fail to optimise your email creative. Even if the test doesn’t make any difference, or in fact actually turns out to be detrimental, at least you know this outcome for the future – especially if someone puts the question to you.


Trying to think of what to test can be tricky, so we’ve put together some suggestions on different email creative elements to test with.


When you try these tests always remember to only test one thing at a time, selecting only one variable, and to measure using either click-throughs or conversions as your measure of success. This should be consistent across your test samples.


For example, in a recent set of emails I sent, I tested whether having generic copy would be better or worse than an email that was personalised from me to the individual and included a personalised signature. Having personalised copy and a signature increased my overall conversions from the email by 32 per cent.



Call to action:


1.       Above the fold or below the fold

2.       Button vs. link

3.       Colour of button

4.       Shape of button; rounded corners vs. straight corners

5.       Call-to-action (CTA) copy: generic action word (like “download,” “click,” “buy,” etc.) vs. creative action word (like “get,” “learn,” “discover,” etc.)

6.       Personalised CTA (i.e. first name directly within the CTA)

7.       CTA button location (top, bottom, left, right)

8.       CTA button size

9.       Duplicate CTAs to create exit points throughout an email





10.       Logo location – top left, top middle, top right, bottom

11.       Logo size – bigger vs. smaller

12.       Different images – change the actual image itself

13.       Smaller images vs. larger images

14.       Animated GIFs vs. no animated GIFs

15.       Photography vs. illustrations





16.       First-name vs. no-first-name personalisation

17.       More copy vs. less copy

18.       Use only headline CTAs vs. headlines, copy and CTA

19.       Prose copy vs. bullet points

20.       Hyperlinks to CTAs vs. no hyperlinks

21.       Written tone of voice

22.       Alignment


23.       Single-column vs. two-column

24.       The order of the stories

25.       Single story email vs. multiple story emails

26.       Different optimisation for mobile responsiveness; hiding images or menus on a mobile or  hiding less important items altogether

27.       Long vs. short emails

28.       Spacing between email elements

29.       Order of content (storytelling/narrative)



30.       Sign off your email vs. don’t sign off your email.

31.       Postscript vs. no postscript

32.       Headshot vs. no headshot