A guide to selecting testing tools.
When looking to implement a new testing tool, the variety of options available can be overwhelming. To help you navigate this landscape, we've compiled a checklist featuring key considerations for selecting the ideal tool, along with some recommendations based on our experience with clients.
1. Cost & package selection.
Selecting a testing tool that aligns with your budget while offering essential functionality is crucial. Look for options that provide affordable packages with the necessary features for your specific needs. Ensure the tool accommodates your traffic levels, as a lot of packages are based on how much traffic reaches your website.
2. Integrations with other tools.
Seamless integration with other tools and platforms is vital for a testing tool's effectiveness. Confirm that the tool supports integrations with essential platforms such as:
An example is Google Analytics (GA4). You’ll need to analyse the results of your tests to determine the winner. By integrating with analytics tools, you can dig deeper into the results than just looking into the testing tool itself.
Customer data platforms.
An example is Tealium AudienceStream. You may have access to a customer data platform which you will use for segmentation and personalisation. If you want to use these segments for A/B testing, you will need to ensure there is a way to feed the segments across to the testing tool.
Examples are Shopify and Shopify Plus. Some tools can integrate directly into your website platform. When using Shopify, you can add multiple apps to your website, including testing tools. When the testing tools are directly linked to your Shopify, it makes it a lot easier to run tests, as we can work directly with your themes.
3. Support, training & onboarding.
A robust support system is essential for addressing queries and issues promptly. Check for tools that offer dedicated support personnel or user-friendly support systems. Additionally, having access to comprehensive training materials can facilitate a smoother onboarding process.
4. Cookie & GDPR compliance.
Adhering to privacy regulations is non-negotiable. Ensure the testing tool allows you to make it compliant with cookie policies and GDPR by following the selections made by the customer when they interact with your cookie policies. This ensures that your testing practices align with legal requirements and industry standards.
5. Features & functionality.
There are certain features that we recommend looking for in a testing tool, so when searching for testing options, consider the following features and functionality.
Range of tests.
Look for a testing tool that offers a range of testing types, including:
A/A - This is when you test blank variations against each other to check the setup of your new tool.
A/B - A test with (usually) two variations, which allows you to test different features or functionality on your website. This is the most common type of test.
MVT - A multivariate test allows you to test multiple features and functionality at the same time.
Personalisation - Segmenting your audience and surfacing different features or content to different audiences.
Redirect - Redirecting users to a new page that has been built into your web platform.
Robust reporting & analysis capabilities.
You want to make sure you are happy with how the reporting works directly in the testing tool itself. Although you may integrate the tool with Google Analytics, you will still need to check the results within the tool itself while the test is live so you can determine when to end the test and call a winner.
Segmentation by device or custom metrics.
Consider segmenting your users by device type, new vs returning or a pre-built customer segment, for example. Therefore, the testing tool should allow you to apply segmentation to the tests as well as feeding segments from external tools, if applicable.
The tool should support running multiple tests concurrently as well, as you may want to run multiple tests on different areas of the website. If you want to run multiple tests, another good feature is to be able to split traffic between tests, so the users will only fall into one test at a time. You might also want to run tests at 100% once you have declared a winner if you aren’t able to implement them right away through your development team.
A visual editor can also be really useful, especially if you don’t have access to a development team.
6. Demo or free trial.
Before committing to a testing tool, it's always useful to arrange a demo to explore its features and address any questions. Some tools also offer free trials, allowing you to experience the platform firsthand and assess its suitability for your requirements.
7. Our favourite testing tools.
It integrates directly with Shopify, which allows you to work directly on your themes.
User-friendly and easy to use, especially if you don’t have access to a development team.
Offers affordable pricing structures.
Platform agnostic, suitable for various website platforms, including Shopify.
Offers affordable pricing structures.
Easy to use; however may need a development team for more complex tests.
Conclusion: your guide to testing tools.
Choosing the right testing tool involves careful consideration of cost, features, compliance, and support. By following our guide and considering our recommended tools, you can make an informed decision that aligns with your testing and optimisation goals.
Want help driving conversions on your eCommerce store?
We're an accredited Shopify Plus agency that offers an expert conversion rate optimisation (CRO) service that both lightens the load and enhances the strategic firepower of time-poor eCommerce managers. Browse our client work for Shopify inspiration and get in touch to discuss your requirements. We would love to help!