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Tips & Tricks for Building Your Experimentation Program

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Our certified partners work with hundreds of e-commerce clients to optimize their websites on a regular basis. We asked them to share some tricks of the trade that can help move the needle on e-commerce sites – garnering more clicks, purchases, and revenue across the board.

Kevin Eichelberger of Blue Acorn writes:

1. Test everything you change. So often, companies deploy changes to their site’s design or functionality without validating whether the update actually addressed their initial goal. Each deployment should have a testing and measurement strategy that is executed to measure the impact of that change.

Optimization shouldn’t be a separate initiative from your development, it should be integrated.

2. Track revenue. With e-commerce, we typically use revenue per visitor as the primary metric we test against, as it also takes into account the average order value which can be impacted through your testing.

Matt Wishnow of Clearhead writes:

3. Pinpoint pain points. We ask our clients to provide us with their top 20 customer service complaints over the past three months. We read, re-read, and re-read them again. We identify the ones that are requests for changes or complaints about problems. We ignore the rest. We then put on our web product problem solving hats to turn them into ideas (hypotheses) that would address the core customer service issue being reported.

4. Try user testing. We run user tests on our potential client’s site with UserTesting.com. We watch real people complete relevant tasks on our potential client’s site. We ask them questions as they go, and we observe the challenges they run into. We write these challenges down, and then we develop ideas for how to address them. Many know the value of user testing, but historically it wasn’t something you could do in a couple of day’s time. UserTesting.com has changed that, and it’s become an invaluable tool in our idea development process.

Brad Messinger of Rise Interactive writes:

5. Use integrations to your advantage: Pair testing with other forms of analysis, such as heat maps, to assist in hypothesis generation. Heat maps provide a qualitative assessment of what’s happening on your web page, painting a broad picture of where visitors focus their attention through actual mouse movements, concentration of clicks, scrolling patterns, and more. Learnings gained from heat maps are an incredible asset to website optimization, helping your testing team develop well-informed hypothesis and testing strategy.

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