Content Experiments with Google Analytics

In August 2012, Google removed for its product suite the Google Website Optimizer tool ton integrate its functionality into Google Analytics. This change now allows an easier integration of the product, thereby making the functionality more widely used by web agencies and web marketers.

Content Experiment
Since this integration into Google Analytics, the functionality is now called “Content Experiment”, and is available in the “Content” menu of Google Analytics, under the Experiment Tab.

And what are these content experiments from Google? Well, these experiments (or tests) let you use many versions of a page of your website to see which one converts the best for you. If your website has precise objectives, these tests can help you. As examples, these objectives, or goals could be selling more products online, increase the number of page views by the visitors, the download of a white paper, the subscription to a newsletter, etc.

As another example, if you want to increase the number of visitors who contact you using the form on your website, you can experiment with many forms to see which one is the best for you. To determine which one is performing the best, the visitors of your website will be redirected randomly on your original page or to your test pages, and Google Experiments will determine the one performing the best.

Something important that should not be neglected with these experiments is the impact on the site’s search performance. Will serving different pages change how your site ranks in Google and other search engines? For this question, Google published a post called “Website testing & Google Search” in the Google Webmaster Tools official blog. In summary, here what is recommended by Google:

  • Do not use cloaking
  • Use the rel=“canonical” link attribute
  • Only run the experiment as long as necessary
  • Use a 302 redirect, not a 301 redirect.

And of course, if you want help to configure and run Google Content Experiments on your website, do not hesitate to contact us at info@optimisationv.com or at 514-622-7073

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