Tom Leung, product manager for Google Website Optimizer, says it’s not always easy to know what drives traffic without a tool like Website Optimizer to help. “In the old days, you would just make [your] changes and hope for the best, or you might look at your traffic the next week and see if there were any changes in your web analytics dashboard.” The problem with that approach, Leung explains, is that you don’t really know why you saw a traffic change. Was it due to your design change or maybe you had a really popular blog post that week?
Leung says where Website optimizer fits in is that it lets you make those improvements with some scientific certainty. “Now I have a tool to evaluate which changes are good, which are neutral and even more importantly, which are bad,” he says. Website Optimizer includes two experiment types: A/B, which switches between two page designs and multivariate where you can test multiple elements such as different headlines and pictures to see which one works best.
Google has recently partnered with content management vendors, to supposedly implement Website Optimizer as built-in features. I wonder if this can be done with WordPress, too, to negate the need to paste code onto pages being tested. Plugin, anyone?