Google has announced this week that they will be ‘sunsetting’ Google Optimize and Optimize 360 later this year.

Optimize was launched to assist small to medium-sized businesses in getting started with experimentation, whilst Optimize 360 is in place for larger enterprises and businesses with more sophisticated testing needs. Both versions will no longer be available after 30 September 2023.

Google launched the Optimize suite over 5 years ago to enable businesses to easily test and improve their user experiences. So, why the sudden change? Well, Google is merging the functionality of Optimize and Optimize 360 into Google Analytics. They are thought to be doing this following the announcement of the transition from Google Analytics 3 (Universal Analytics) to Google Analytics 4 (GA4) later this year.

According to Google: "Optimize, though a longstanding product, does not have many of the features and services that our customers request and need for experimentation testing. We, therefore, have decided to invest in solutions that will be more effective for our customers."

So, what does the change mean for you and how can you continue with your digital development following the sunsetting of the Google products?

We recently spoke to one of our DXP partners, Optimizely - who offer a comparative set of products and tools to Google Optimize. They said that there are seven key reasons why Google Optimize customers were choosing their Optimizely Web Experimentation product for future scaling and experimentation. These seven reasons are:

1. Performance without compromise

A/B testing risks slowing down your website or creating a bad user experience. The first happens when the experimentation code snippet is large and loaded synchronously. This can cause experiment loading delays which cause the screen to flicker.

With Optimizely, you don’t have to sacrifice the user experience for speed. Optimizely customers get Performance Edge, an ultrafast Experiment Delivery Network built on Cloudflare’s Edge Network and included with every Optimizely web plan.

2. Accuracy through Stats Engine and flexible data

Optimizely’s Stats Engine provides real-time sequential statistics to deliver accurate results, fast. At any time, you can look at the results page and see the experiment status live without incurring a peeking error, which means that given sufficient traffic, you can reach statistical significance within hours.

News that the products will cease to operate on September 30, 2023, will no doubt have an impact, but Google has assured customers that their experiments and personalisation tests can continue to run until that date.

3. Web and product testing in one platform

Optimizely Feature Experimentation provides value beyond marketing and serves developer and product, management users. It includes an enterprise feature management platform for feature flags, testing, and rollouts.

4. Test and personalize experiences for key audiences

Why offer a one-size-fits-all experience when you can easily offer your users personalized experiences at scale? Optimizely uses a unique combination of machine learning and human expertise that enables you to deliver targeted messaging, personalised offers, and recommend the most relevant content for your users.

5. Powerful integrations for building powerful experiences

To build winning online experiences, you need the right tool for the job, instead of an average tool for everything. Optimizely seamlessly integrates with best-in-class tools to create a digital experience stack that maximises value for clients.

For example, Optimizely's Data Platform provides one-click integrations bringing data from all channels into a harmonized format that resolves customer identities and provides actionable insights.

6. Usability and Certification

Not only are Optimizely user-friendly for large teams with open documentation and open-source SDKs actively referenced across Github, Optimizely also offers free full certification courses through the online Optimizely Academy which enrolls 500 new trainees a week. This is particularly valuable for cross-functional teams who need to enable employees quickly to accelerate value from their investment.

7. Global Support and Expertise

With over 1.8M experiments run, and $1B in incremental revenue achieved for Optimizely customers in the last year alone, they have the best practices, support, and services to ensure your success.

Google encourages all users to download their historical data from within the Optimize user interface before the deadline.

This can be done by opening the ‘Export your Optimize report data’ tab. To access your historical raw data, users should integrate with the Google Analytics Data API. It’s also worth noting that users won't be able to access their experience inference results or their historical Google Analytics 4 raw data after the sunset date.

For more information on getting the best return from your experimentation testing, why not book a call with one of our technical experts?

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