At Optimizely we pride ourselves on quality of support for every customer, no matter the level. We’ve experienced tremendous growth since starting in 2010 and the support we provide all of our clients is a huge part of that. Sometimes our group doesn’t receive the glory that engineering gets when they develop an amazing feature, or the sales team hears when they close a big deal. Our team doesn’t get to ring the gong when we answer a tough question about a customer’s test. Enabling customers to be successful is what drives my group. Every day I see how hard the people around me work to present a positive image of the company to existing and potential clients. It’s our job to delight everyone who interacts with us.
Happy 2013! As we blast off into a new year of optimization greatness, we thought it would behoove all of us to glance back at the products and features we launched in 2012, and some important moments that happened along the way. We’ve outlined our top 10 exciting milestones and product releases from 2012 in no particular order. We initially thought we’d try to organize them in order of what we think you, dear reader, would be most excited about. That failed when we realized that you are super excited about every one of them. How did you do in 2012? What would you like to see from Optimizely in 2013? Leave us a comment below.
Late in the summer, the team took to redesigning the Optimizely site, and it will come as little surprise to anyone reading this that we saw this as an outstanding opportunity for an A/B test of our old site vs. the redesign. Well, the results are in, and we can declare winner – but before we do, I’d like to share an update.
Today marks yet another exciting chapter in our company history, and I’d like to take the opportunity to say thanks to our outstanding base of over 2,800 Optimizely customers and a remarkable, one-of-a-kind team who have all helped to make it happen.
Last week we crossed 100,000 A/B and multivariate tests run on the Optimizely platform and we have surpassed Omniture Test&Target to become the #1 website optimization platform in the world. To appreciate this milestone, its good to briefly revisit why we built this company in the first place.
Optimizely is the product I wish I had while working as the Director of Analytics for the Obama 2008 campaign. We were using Google Website Optimizer and Omniture Test&Target to A/B test the site but were constantly frustrated with having to spend developer time to implement each test. Deploying the variations required adding little snippets of code for each section throughout our site and relying heavily on technical resources. That said, we still helped raise more than $60 million from A/B testing but unfortunately only ran a small percentage of all the tests we wanted to run. The inspiration for Optimizely sprouted from that experience. Simply put, we wanted to create a product that enabled anyone to A/B test their website– no technical skills required.
With Optimizely, Pete Koomen and I set out to build exactly that – an A/B and Multivariate testing product that would remove the technical hurdles to website optimization and empower the entire world to more easily realize the value of data-driven decision making.
We still have much to do, and we are excited for the continued developments and the road ahead. Every day we are encouraged by the feedback, growth, and customer success stories that we continue to hear from our customers. I will admit that I am flattered to see tweets like these, but more than that I am encouraged and excited at the prospects of what we are building together.
Just over six months ago, we crossed the 50,000 experiments mark – in the last six months we have doubled the number of experiments run on the Optimizely platform. Today we will reach 100,000 experiments.
This is exciting for a couple of reasons:
Looking at the growth of our enterprise customer base, which has surpassed 2,800 this month, it is great to see that we are building an inviting product for so many new Optimizely testers. Over the course of a year, we have climbed the charts and are now the the most adopted testing platform among Alexa’s top 10,000 websites, surpassing Omniture Test&Target. Since the beginning of January 2011 our revenue has grown 5,278%, and even as we have grown our team substantially, we are still profitable. Optimizely tests have measured the impact of hundreds of thousands of variations on the experience of over 1,303,364,329 visitors to our customers’ sites.
Additionally – our existing users are continuing to expand the testing culture throughout their organizations, and the number of tests that are run by each of our customers continues to quickly grow. Testing idea contests and company-wide incentives for promoting the testing process is fast becoming a more frequent experience that we hear about from our customers, and illustrates the potential for people in any part of an organization to impact the testing process. Last month we had the pleasure of hosting a Meetup here in downtown San Francisco where long-time Optimizely tester, Lizzie Allen, of gaming network IGN, shared the journey of developing a testing culture throughout her company. What started out as a singular effort has transformed into a company wide testing mentality
To Infinity and Beyond
As I said, there is still much more work to do – but today, it is both exciting and humbling to see a global community of testing forming around our product. We are thrilled to do our part in supporting that community and striving to be the nucleus that fuels a collective mission to build a better web.
A few months ago, we announced a round of funding from Battery Ventures, Google Ventures, and InterWest Partners - as I noted then, the decision to raise money was an opportunity for us to scale the operations of our team and accelerate the continued improvements of our product.
It is with great excitement that I can report that our team has grown to 37 employees from 10 in the last six months, and we have continued to add to the product based on our customers’ feedback – in addition to the late summer launch of our Mobile View testing feature, we have a range of exciting developments that are right around the corner. We are optimistic that these new features will continue to make it even easier for our customers to drive their sites to new heights.
All this to say, we are doing it – together. We are pushing the notion of data-driven decision making throughout all ends of our organizations. Again, this all could not happen without our unbelievable customer base, and the talented team here at Optimizely. I am excited to see the growth, but even more thankful for the opportunities we have in front of us as we set our sights on hitting one million tests on Optimizely in the not too distant future.
Without further ado, I invite you to check out our latest case study, as we proudly launch our new site, new look and the results of the 100,000th experiment on Optimizely.
- Surpassed Omniture Test&Target to become the #1 website optimization platform
- 100,000+ experiments run using Optimizely
- 1,303,364,329+ visitors participating in Optimizely experiments
- 2,800+ customers
- Revenue growth of 5,278% and still profitable
- A phenomenal team of 37 employees
Late in the summer here at Optimizely HQ, we began discussing an idea to redesign the Optimizely website.
Some of the initial thoughts were that our existing site design had been successful with a lot of early adopters, but as we grow, so should our approach to engaging new visitors to Optimizely.
Our previous site design made a clear and simple statement of our initial offering, an easy-to-use product for website A/B testing which we captured with our tagline: “A/B Testing You’ll Actually Use.” We discussed the possible opportunity we had to re-imagine a design that would maintain our core message and brand while providing additional benefits to visitors to our homepage and more broadly capture the value of A/B testing.
Today we’re excited to release an open source grab bag of scripts for Amazon EC2, available at https://github.com/jeff-optimizely/grab-bag-for-ec2
There are two main purposes for the grab bag:
1. The Grab Bag contains useful scripts – such as a backup script – that you may want to use by themselves.
2. The Grab Bag scripts can be used as examples for creating your own scripts.
The repository contains Python scripts for creating instances, creating RAID arrays, backing up volumes, updating ELBs, and updating your /etc/hosts file with aliases for your EC2 instances.
To get started with the scripts, add your AWS access key and secret to the credentials.py. It’s a best practice to test third party code with a secondary account first, rather than executing it on your primary account.
Version 1.0 contains the following files:
backup_config.json – a config file for backup.py
backup.py – a backup script for backing up volumes on Amazon EC2
common.py – common functions that can be used by the other scripts
create_instance.py – a script for creating an instance and doing other first-time maintenance work, such as installing Yum packages
create_raid.py – a script for creating a RAID array and attaching it to an instance
credentials.py – your AWS credentials
README.md – a read me file
update_elb.py – a script for adding to and removing from an ELB
update_hosts.py – a script that adds the IP addresses of your EC2 instances to your /etc/hosts file, for convenience
We’re also inviting other developers to contribute to this collection of scripts. If you have ideas for new scripts, edits or improvements, please contribute. We’re looking forward to seeing what you come up with.
And Python developers, stay tuned. We have another project we’re planning to open source in the near future for efficiently working with MongoDB.
If this post interests you, we’re also looking to hire backend and dev ops engineers. See our jobs page for more info.