A/B and Multivariate Testing Tools

Having three variations in an experiment does not make a multivariate test; it’s an A/B test with three variations, A (original) and B (variation 1) and C (variation 2) with most A/B and multivariate testing tools offering both types. So, what is the difference?

A/B Testing Tools

An A/B test is using a variation to test one or more common changes to the page and then gaining insight if the combination of all changes within a variation outperforms the original. So a different color button and a call-to-action (CTA) in that button is one variation with multiple changes but still part of an A/B test. For example a simplified A/B test for your reference:

  • A – Original (no changes)
  • B – Variation 1 (testing button color “blue” and CTA text “Buy Now”)
  • C – Variation 2 (testing button color “orange” and CTA text “Add to Cart”)

When version C increases the revenue per visitor, there is new insight; the combination of the new button color and the new CTA text “Add to Cart” is the best combo for this audience. We cannot conclude anything about the color or text. For that, A/B and multivariate testing tools use the multivariate test also called MVT.

Multivariate Testing Tools

MVT tools focus on finding the best combination within individual changes. Using the example above we have the following elements:

  • Button
    • Original (No change)
    • Button Blue
    • Button Orange
  • CTA text
    • Original (No change)
    • Text “Buy Now.”
    • Text “Add to Cart.”

A client using A/B testing software Convert Experiences sets up two sections: Button and CTA and creates two variations in addition to the original. Convert Experiences then creates combinations of all available changes (and original). This MVT now consists of nine tested variations:

  1. Button Original (No change) & Original (No change)
  2. Button Blue & Original (No change)
  3. Button Orange & Original (No change)
  4. Button Original (No change) & Text “Buy Now.”
  5. Button Blue & Text “Buy Now.”
  6. Button Orange & Text “Buy Now.”
  7. Button Original (No change) & Text “Add to Cart.”
  8. Button Blue & Text “Add to Cart.”
  9. Button Orange & Text “Add to Cart.”

It’s important to understand that most A/B and Multivariate Testing Tools offer both options as features, A/B testing software gives fast results on what variations succeed while MVT gives more detailed insight on each element changed. .

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