Skip to main content

A or B?

I read the recent Wired Magazine article on A/B testing websites and like many of you, I wondered to myself if it was actually possible to embrace this sort of design philosophy.

After talking with my team, we've redoubled our efforts to design core Key Performance Indicators ("KPIs") in an attempt to actually start using A/B testing as a regular process for updating our site navigation, design choices and whatever else we want to change.

It's a disorienting thing, removing subjectivity from the design process. My background as a designer makes me one of those people who can look at a screen and make grand proclamations about where things should be and what they should say. It's something I'm determined to stop doing. I will be honest, it is hard to stop.

Either way, we've devised a series of "top level" KPIs designed to measure overall site effectiveness - and we've limited it to 5 measurements. Yes, of course we'll design secondary KPIs, but at this point, we plan to benchmark and establish baselines for just the most important things on a website. Here's a sample of the working list of questions we hope to answer:

  1. 1. Do people come back (return visits)
  2. 2. Do they make donations? (page views / total on site donations)
  3. 3. Do they stay once they visit? (time on site)
  4. 4. Do they take key actions designed to engage them in a deeper relationship? (page views / key actions)

We feel like we've got a good handle on how we will do this and I'm excited to get started. Some changes will be major, others we hope to test, like the font on the main navigation, are nominal. Either way, we'll learn a lot about what makes the site really tick and put ourselves in a position to improve it over time.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

What Would Google Do: Non-Profit Edition

I've been tweeting and yapping to friends about Jeff Jarvis's terrific book "What Would Google Do" even before I've properly finishing the thing. I sat myself down tonight and plowed through the last 100 pages where Jarvis examines different industries including automotive, manufacturing, telcom, healthcare and more to see what Google would do if they were in those businesses.

On one hand, I was really hoping that Jarvis had taken a look at the non-profit sector given my personal history in the sector and my ongoing interest in how non-profits operate. I'll also note that I used to write a fairly well read non-profit marketing blog. Unfortunately, the book doesn't delve into this much, if at all. I thought, instead of a basic set of notes or a book review as I usually do that I'd jump back in time and take a look at the sector with fresh, and "Googley" eyes.

If you haven't yet read the book, the basic premise is that Google fundamentally o…

Run!

I wrote a short piece on my LinkedIn page about transitioning to a startup called "Run!"

Cross posting it here for archiving sake...

I'm a huge fan of Zombie shows like The Walking Dead and it's new spinoff, Fear the Walking Dead. Running is a big part of being in a zombie apocalypse.  It turns out, running is also a bit part of working for a startup. After many years and several industries (non-profit, tech, consulting), I find myself back in what I call "startup land' - that magical place where chaos reigns and everyday brings a new set of challenges, each of which feels more important than the next. As it turns out, I thrive on that sort of chaos. Even when I was at PwC working as a consultant, the most interesting projects were the ones where there was total chaos. I'd look around and see everyone scrambling for cover and I'd just revel in the madness.  Now that I'm back in the thick of things working for a very small technology company, I fe…

Mottos, sayings and credos

I was lucky enough to be invited to attend a recent client event at Facebook HQ. Pretty cool. Facebook allowed several non-profits to be a part of a very special. "Hack" designed to come up with unique ways to accomplish our missions

This was my 2nd visit to "the book" and outside the awesome snacks and food, what I really loved were the various sayings posted on different walls.

I jotted a few down...

done is better than perfect proceed and be boldfail hardermove fast and break things
Not sure which is my favorite. I think I want my own posters for the office, and for my kids rooms.