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A / B Testing: The Most Powerful Way to Turn Clicks Into Customers by [Siroker, Dan, Koomen, Pete]
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A / B Testing: The Most Powerful Way to Turn Clicks Into Customers Kindle Edition

3.5 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Product Description

From the Inside Flap

The average conversion rate the rate at which visitors convert into customers across the web is only 2%. That means it′s likely that 98% of visitors to your website won′t end up converting into customers.

What′s the solution? A/B testing.

A/B testing is the simple idea of showing several different versions of a web page to live traffic, and then measuring the effect each version has on visitors. Using A/B testing, companies can improve the effectiveness of their marketing and user experience and, in doing so, can sometimes double or triple their conversion rates. Testing has been fundamental in driving the success of Google, Amazon, Netflix, and other top tech companies. Even Barack Obama and Mitt Romney had dedicated teams A/B testing their campaign websites during the 2012 Presidential race.

In the past, marketing teams were unable to unleash the power of A/B testing because it required costly engineering and IT resources. Today, a new generation of technology that enables marketers to run A/B tests without depending on engineers is emerging and quickly becoming one of the most powerful tools for making data–driven decisions.

Authors Dan Siroker and Pete Koomen are cofounders of Optimizely, the leading A/B testing platform used by more than 5,000 organizations across the world. A/B Testing offers best practices and lessons learned from more than 300,000 experiments run by Optimizely customers. You′ll learn:

  • What to test
  • How to choose the testing solution that′s right for your organization
  • How to assemble an A/B testing dream team
  • How to create personalized experiences for every visitor
  • And much more

Marketers and web professionals will become obsolete if they don′t embrace a data–driven approach to decision making. This book shows you how, no matter your technical expertise.

From the Back Cover

How Your Business Can Use the Science That Helped Win the White House

"Dan and Pete are changing the way business is done and decisions are made. By pulling together concrete examples of how A/B testing has made an impact, they are inspiring a new generation of companies to make thoughtful, data–driven decisions. Their new book is smart, valuable, and proves just how indispensable A/B testing is today."

"Finally, a book on A/B testing and digital optimization that I will eagerly hand out to my clients! It′s approachable, not overly technical, and is actually full of real–world examples of testing in action that provide the inspiration for testing that is so badly needed in most companies."
CALEB WHITMORE, founder and CEO, Analytics Pros; coauthor of Performance Marketing with Google Analytics

"A practical and readable guide to get the most out of your online marketing tests. Get it before your competitors do!"
Tim Ash, CEO, SiteTuners; bestselling author of Landing Page Optimization; and chair of Conversion Conference

"Here′s the secret to magnificent marketing success: 1. Create a hypothesis. 2. Test it. 3. Be less wrong! In our immensely complex business world, if your organization is not structured to be less wrong every day, your failure is guaranteed. Ready to be less wrong but don′t know how? Let Dan and Pete teach you!"
Avinash Kaushik, author of Web Analytics 2.0; Digital Marketing Evangelist, Google

"Savvy marketers have long known that A/B testing is a great way to optimize marketing and generate more revenue. But for too long, it has been considered too hard and complicated for most marketers to use. A/B Testing: The Most Powerful Way to Turn Clicks into Customers shows marketers at all levels of experience why testing is important and more importantly, it gives them step–by–step guidance on how to get started and get the best results. I′m giving copies of this to my entire team, and I recommend you do as well!"
Jon Miller, cofounder and VP of Marketing, Marketo

"A/B testing that is fast and simple is set to disrupt web measurement and analytics on a massive scale. Every company should be using A/B testing to continuously improve, and anyone who wants to lead the charge on this revolution within their organization will benefit from reading this book."
Amy Chang, former Global Head of Product, Google Analytics

"Much like the prescriptive writing guide The Elements of Style by Strunk and White, A/B Testing is simple in its construction and design, but deceptively powerful and comprehensive in its message and breadth. This book is sure to be the foundational and prescriptive guide to optimization testing."
Khai Tran, Senior Manager, Product Online Video Products & Platforms, Disney/ABC Television Group

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 3652 KB
  • Print Length: 213 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1118536096
  • Publisher: Wiley; 1 edition (7 Aug. 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00E1JO50M
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #81,460 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
This book is packed full of case studies and stories that give you a great insight in to how powerful testing is, and an easy way to start a testing culture within a business. I have worked with AB and MV testing for quite some time, but found lots of the examples very interesting and have used the netflix case study in a recent presentation already.

If you are looking for a very complex, code-heavy, tutorial then this is not the book for you. If you are wanting to learn more about website testing, or you want to be able to be evangelical about testing in your company this is a fantastic resource.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
If you are involved in AB or multi variant testing already, I'd be surprised if you'd learn anything from this book. The content is good, although somewhat padded by success stories (with no data provided), but it is much more a high level overview of the subject. As such, I would say its suited less at the serious practitioner and more at marketing folks who want to understand this way of working. For that it is likely good.

This is a serious subject, complex to really appreciate the details and its a shame this book didn't stretch to that.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0x9e75cd5c) out of 5 stars 32 reviews
18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9e39387c) out of 5 stars Fun non-technical introduction to A/B testing 27 May 2014
By Ron Kohavi - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
As someone who has been running controlled experiments (e.g. A/B tests) for over 10 years at Amazon and Microsoft, I found it fun to read with motivating examples that are easy to understand by anyone thinking of trying A/B testing.

This is a book that is great to convince an org to try A/B testing, but don't expect it to explain the technical side and the pitfalls, which you might find in peer-reviewed papers like these on exp-platform:
- Controlled Experiments on the Web: Survey and Practical Guide
- Seven Rules of Thumb for Web Site Experimenters
- Trustworthy Online Controlled Experiments: Five Puzzling Outcomes Explained
- Online Controlled Experiments at Large Scale
- Unexpected Results in Online Controlled Experiments

Some things that are could be improved:
- The Overall Evaluation Criterion (OEC) is not just a measure of success. This is critical and the authors' experience with simple funnels may be limiting here. In more complicated scenarios, coming up with a good OEC that is predictive of future success is harder. For example, search engines don't directly optimize for query share and revenue (see pitfalls paper above).
- The use of A/B testing is not just for front-end features. There are great examples of back-end improvements, such as relevance for search.
- One of the more important observations by groups doing A/B testing is around the importance of web site performance, which is absent here.
- The authors suggest an incorrect procedure for ending experiments: "Once the test reaches statistical significance, you'll have your answer" and "When the test has reached a statistically significant conclusion , the tester sends a follow-up with results and the key takeaways." This procedure will have more false positives than expected. The correct procedure is to determine the duration in advance (e.g., a full week or two), then check for stat-sig at that point.
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9e8502dc) out of 5 stars Nice business anecdotes, but little practical value 14 Sept. 2014
By Artas - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition
Let me begin by saying that Dan Siroker and Pete Koomen are some of the most experienced people on the tech scene, when it comes to A/B testing, and I have no intention of questioning their professional credentials. Watch the videos of presentations they gave over the years and you will clearly learn that for yourself. And yet despite the strong professional qualifications of the authors, the book suffers from two major problems.

The problem #1 is that the amount of material contained in the book is too scant to produce an adequate book. It could have been an excellent, long-read article. Or a solid 1-hour tech talk. But it is not enough to publish a book. Hence Wiley's decision to bump up fonts, introduce empty placeholder pages after each chapter and generously sprinkle the book with large color illustrations. In short, the editors used every trick in the book to convince you that you are reading a proper book, when you are not. The fact that I managed to finish it in under two-days, while visiting the in-laws and socializing with guests just proves this point.

The problem #2 is even more lethal - the editorial team behind this book has methodically gutted the original material - which by the way can be viewed Google Venture YouTube channel, under the title "A/B testing done right" - to ensure that the book contains only anecdotal stories, vague generalizations and generic checklists. In other words, if you had an idea of reading this book to get a hands-on introduction on how to run your own A/B tests, then you are wasting your time.

Granted, the authors faced a predicament when it comes to practical information. As founders of Optimize.ly, a startup that helps companies to implement A/B tests in a few clicks, they are most familiar with their own technology stack, user interface and suggested workflow. As a result, Dan and Pete could not tell you much about how to setup A/B tests on Omniture, Google Website Optimizer or Mixpanel. But they could have covered so many other tricky questions: from set up process when working with low-traffic/distinct target groups to weeding out technological bias (think old browsers failing to display the functionality properly) to actionable tips for handling multivariate analysis.

As it stands, the only actionable informations that is included in the book can be found Appendix 1 (60 Things to A/B Tests) and Appendix 2 (Metrics and the Statistics behind the A/B testing).

To recap, this book is not going to tell you anything new or actionable about A/B Testing. So if you are looking to build develop your understanding of this method, they you would be better off reading the seminal research paper "Practical Guide to Controlled Experiments on the Web" written by R.Kohavi, R.M. Henne and D.Sommerfield back in 2007. Or watching the talk Dan gave at Google Ventures workshop. Or buying that other book on A/B testing by Bryan Eisenberg.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9e85021c) out of 5 stars Good, very concise 26 Aug. 2013
By AJ - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I have been optimizing landing pages for about seven years.

A/B testing can often be somewhat of a dark art. Numerous public articles & blog posts cite tests with sample sizes so ludicrously small you are left wondering if the writer completed high school math. Not here, in this book the authors stick to mass scale examples, with full color before and after shots.

All of the big points fit in exactly with my personal experience -- such as things like removing elements rather than adding them.

The big problem with this book is the big print. I read it very, very fast. I will not even say how fast less this review seems unbelievable. No complaints, a few small things already are sticking out in my mind, leaving me certain that the book will pay for itself both in cost and time. Considering I once paid $500 for a book on landing page optimization many years back..

A/B testing, and user experience optimization in general, is a big topic. It is a scarce topic as well. There are only so many people who have access to the millions of humans it takes to perform a truly mass scale, long term iterative optimization. The authors aren't releasing any deep optimization secrets, but they are pointing you in the right direction to tackle this utterly complex subject.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9e393f9c) out of 5 stars A useful resource for companies looking to use data to optimize websites 22 Aug. 2013
By Jon Miller - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
I've long been a fan of A/B testing to optimize web experiences and conversions, but have found that too many companies don't know what to test, how to test effectively, or how to handle the internal and cultural barriers to testing well. That's why, as an advisor to Optimizely, I was very happy to hear they were writing a book to serve as a comprehensive resource for testing. And the final result is excellent. I found the book easy to read, and practical -- with some great examples and case studies as well. I'll be getting copies for my entire team!
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9e84c654) out of 5 stars Its only for beginners 10 Jan. 2014
By Amazon Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I was waiting for this to come out for a while now, but I was a bit disappointed. General, introductory stuff mostly, I was hoping for some intermediate, advanced insights. Excellent if you are starting out with A/B testing.
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