When it comes to a story of an impressive jump in sales, we turn to Some Guys Catch All the Fish published by Red Raven Press, a company owned by Red Rocket.

Red Raven Press has published an assortment of how-to books and reference materials relating to fishing and other topics. Some Guys was released in February 2005, and the challenge Red Rocket faced was driving Internet browsers to the book. To do this, they optimized the site and implemented pay-per-click advertising as well.

With pay-per-click ready, the biggest hurdle the Red Rocket team faced was optimizing the sales pitch found at the end of the online ad. Determined to find the best solution, the team began a series of tests to see what changing one word at a time in a headline or in the body copy of the sales letter would do. What they found was pretty remarkable. For example, removing the word “buy” and replacing it with other phrases like “order now” or “take advantage of this offer” increased conversion rates by as much as 26.7%.

When the sales letter first went online in February of 2005, Red Raven Press made a total of 2 sales for the month. However, once the testing started, the numbers started to climb. The next month saw 11 sales; April 2005 had 21, and May 2005 recorded 85. While that’s certainly an impressive increase, the total number of sales ballooned to 164 in June 2005. By October 2005, sales had hit 231 for one month – a mere 8 months after the book became available. That’s an eye-popping 11,500% increase just in 8 months.

While 231 books a month doesn’t seem like a best seller, to the author who priced the book at nearly $65, the additional $13,000 a month was enough to live on.

Red Rocket was able to score such impressive sales figures by continued testing, by being willing to try new words and new techniques to get the sale. Through testing on our own projects, we gain valuable experience that we can apply to our clients’ projects. Most other firms won’t put the effort into the testing that Red Rocket does: It makes us stand above the competition because we’re willing to do the tests for ourselves rather than relying on old marketing standards that may not work in a changing consumer landscape.

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