Get started with Optimizely Web Experimentation

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Optimizely Web Experimentation lets you test experiences on your site with visitors, learn from them, and take action based on results.

A/B testing, also known as split testing, is a method of optimization that lets you run multiple versions of an experience to compare which is more effective at achieving your conversion goals. Visitors are randomly bucketed into one version; A or B. By measuring how visitors interact, for example, clicking a button, viewing a page, watching a video, submitting a form, or completing a purchase, you can determine which version is most effective at achieving your conversion goals.

Optimizely Web Experimentation lets you set up and run A/B tests and other test types. In Optimizely Web Experimentation, these are known as experiments. The different versions of the page that a visitor might see are known as variations.


See Implementation checklist to set up Optimizely Web Experimentation for longer-term success.

See Optimizely Web Experimentation resources for more information on setting up Optimizely Web Experimentation, building experiments, troubleshooting, and more.

Implement the snippet

To start using Optimizely Web Experimentation, add the small JavaScript snippet to your site:

  1. Go to Settings > Implementation.
  2. Click the clipboard icon for the snippet you want to copy.
    If your account uses custom snippets, you might see more than one snippet listed. Choose the snippet you want to use for your experiment.
  3. Paste the snippet at the top of the <head> tag of the page where you want to test or track a goal. Add the snippet sitewide for simplicity.

See the Optimizely Performance Guide to decide which snippet implementation is right for you.

See Optimizing the performance of client-side experimentation for more optimization information.

Manage collaborators, projects, and experiments

Users are called collaborators, and each type of collaborator has different permissions level:

  • Administrators – Full access to all projects and account billing information. A user who is an administrator on one project is also an administrator on every other Optimizely Web Experimentation project in your organization.
  • Editors – Can create and edit non-running campaigns. They can also view results.
  • Project owners – Can create, edit, publish, and pause campaigns. A project can have more than one project owner.
  • Viewers – Can preview campaigns and view results.
See Manage collaborators for more information.

Projects act as an organizational structure, letting you subdivide your Optimizely Web Experimentation account into territories: for different sections of a website, multiple sites, or different products. Each project has its own snippet, set of experiments, and set of collaborators. Learn more about creating and managing projects in Optimizely.

Get optimization ideas

Read these articles for testing ideas:

The book, A/B Testing: The Most Powerful Way To Turn Clicks Into Customers, provides many ideas and examples to get you started.

Build an experiment in six steps

There are six steps to create an experiment in Optimizely Web Experimentation:

  1. Configure URL targeting or pages where your experiment runs.
  2. Create variations – Make changes to your site with the Visual Editor or custom code.
  3. Add audiences.
  4. Add metrics – How you measure success.
  5. Set traffic distribution – How traffic is split between variations.
  6. QA your experiment and publish it.