I’ve written so much already, I hesitate to summarize the series as you suggested. The 8 points you pulled out do a pretty good job in and of themselves. Instead, let me focus on the 5 things companies can do right now to optimize their optimization program – and I will include some of the key themes and take-aways from our conversation.
- Stop listening to consultants.
- There is no such thing as “one-size-fits-all” best practices in digital optimization. Stop listening to consultants who try to tell you there is. Best practice blogs and books should be considered “one size fits MOST”….or even “one size fits some”. The only best practices you should concern yourself with are those that fit YOUR organization. (Interesting how so many best practice gurus will tell you there is nothing more important than personalization for your customers but then also tell you that you must run your program in the same way as all other programs run theirs…)
- Exception to #1: it truly is a best practice one-size-fits-all recommendation to ensure your analytics, optimization and design teams are closely linked and interdependent. This is the one area in your life where co-dependency is not only ok, but healthy and optimal!
- Because I can’t possibly state it clearly enough or with too much emphasis – please, please, please use the deep integration of analytics into your testing program. USE the deep dive segmentation and VoC analyses to feed your test design and roadmaps!
- Even if you have an insights-driven roadmap for future-state design decisions, find a way to measure “time to action” or something similar so that the actions recommended based on the insights gained are still followed to measure impact. And for all other types of testing – make sure you’re testing things you can actually implement. Learning that your customers prefer experience X but you can only implement the lesser-preferred experience Y just breeds frustration and is a waste of very precious resources.
- I heard a joke once about how you can make a small fortune in vineyards – start with a large fortune. At least in this situation, you can be very sure that the budget you put into your optimization program will easily pay for itself and much more besides! A recent survey of the testing industry showed 91% of respondents felt testing as well worth the investment. Plus, if the optimization program has as its KPI Actionable Insights as I recommend, you will be able to quickly and easily measure the financial impact of the actions taken based on the optimization program insights. I have only seen budgets increase when the true impact of the program is measured in this way.
Finally – the fun part! X change 2014 is going to have the largest optimization huddle selection ever before with 10 huddles to choose from! I’m super excited to have such a large selection this year and I’m eager to continue some great conversations around all things optimization.
Just getting started in testing? Consider my huddle on the foundations of testing. We’ll discuss everything from program standards to organizational structure to getting off to the best possible start with low hanging fruit.
Already testing and want to commiserate with others who have also experienced the same pitfalls? And even more important – learn from each other ways of avoiding more pitfalls? Consider joining Lynn Lamphier as she leads a discussion on just this topic!
Is your program up and running and you’re ready to grow or move faster? Join Melanie Hall or Dylan Lewis to discuss rapid testing methods and scaling your organization.
Struggling with working with your design teams? Join Tyson Chambers to discuss how best to work with UX teams to optimize speed and results of your testing program.
These are just a few to whet your appetite. Check out the full list of testing huddles and register soon! Huddles are filling fast. I look forward to seeing you there and continuing the optimization conversation!