Google Optimize Ends in September
The world of digital marketing always moves forward, but this means essential tools change and churn over time. Google Optimize and Optimize 360 will end service on September 30, 2023, with no current plans to include a testing tool offering as part of Google Analytics 4 (sometimes referred to as GA4). While Google is drastically changing their offerings, there are exciting opportunities for former Google Optimize users to explore other tools that will up-level their testing programs and work well alongside Google Analytics 4. However, choosing a new tool is an impactful decision that deserves proper consideration.
Complexities of Choosing a New Experimentation Tool
Adding a new tool is never an easy decision. Changing systems, replacing tools, and maintaining consistent processes is a challenge for everyone on the team. No one wants to relearn systems or drastically change processes if it’s not warranted, but the end of Google Optimize means many teams don’t have a choice. Thankfully, there are a range of options for users depending on their needs. A/B testing, experimentation, and personalization are critical to maintaining and growing impactful digital experiences, but the end of Google Optimize means those processes must live on a different platform. Carefully consider what features are must-haves and how new additions will impact your MarTech stack before committing to a new tool.
Features to Keep in Mind When Choosing a New Tool
The good news is that Google Optimize isn’t irreplaceable. If your main goal is to replace the features that will leave with Google Optimize, this won’t be difficult to achieve as the vast majority of testing tools cover Google Optimize’s feature set. However, it’s crucial to consider how well your new tool integrates with Google Analytics 4. It’s much easier to run deep analysis on tests and personalization campaigns from within an analytics tool rather than in a testing system. This means that data must flow from one tool to another without compromise. The Google Analytics integration capacities were well set up for Google Optimize, so whichever tool you choose as a replacement must allow for a similarly straightforward and uncomplicated path.
The vast majority of testing tools cover Google Optimize’s feature set, but it’s crucial to consider how well your new tool integrates with Google Analytics 4.
While we recommend prioritizing Google Analytics 4 integration to minimize the impact on your test analysis and reporting, there are a number of exciting features to consider as you transition away from Google Optimize. These features may include:
- Ability to run experiments server-side in addition to client-side
- Integrations with Google Analytics 4 and Google Ads, as well as other tools such as Customer Data Platforms
- High performance levels and/or solutions to page flicker
- Robust audience builder
- High number of possible concurrent campaigns and solutions with overlap
- Global customer support
- Multi-page (funnel) testing
- Multi-armed bandit testing (dynamically allocated traffic to winning variations using machine learning)
- Feature flag helps you enable, disable, hide, or roll out a product feature
- Change history allows you to view a log of changes to all project entities, including flags, experiments, audiences, and events
- Cross-browser testing lets you preview your experiments across 18 browsers at once
- Security with 2-Step Verification and Single Sign-on (SSO)
- GDPR, CCPA, and PCI compliant
There are an assortment of tools on the market with various prices and features; Optimizely is one of the tools that would be a good replacement for Google Optimize.
Google Recommends and Supports Optimizely
Google recently announced Optimizely as one of their core partners in light of Google Optimize’s end, which means that Optimizely was selected by Google as one of the testing tools to get a best-in-class integration. This partnership allows Optimizely data to flow effectively into Google Analytics 4 via a simple and reliable integration. Optimizely also runs on Google Cloud, making this partnership even more secure.
Google’s stamp of approval positions Optimizely as an excellent replacement for Google Optimize, but the platform offers far more than a one-to-one replacement as Optimizely boasts a plethora of features and functionality that outpace Google Optimize.
As on of Google’s core partners, Optimizely holds the advantage of allowing data to flow effectively into Google Analytics 4 via a simple and reliable integration.
It’s not an industry secret that Google Analytics 4 has some growing pains and isn’t as feature complete as many would want before the end of Universal Analytics and the sunsetting of Google Optimize. However, picking a tool that integrates well with Google Analytics 4 to replace Google Optimize ensures your future reporting, testing, and analysis don’t suffer. Since getting test data into your analytics tool is key, Google recommends Optimizely as one of the alternatives to Google Optimize. It’s a testament to Optimizely’s power that Google uses and vouches for the platform.
Optimizely is Your MarTech Stack’s New Best Friend
Optimizely’s extensive integration options make it easy to fold in a wide portfolio of market-leading tools without creating headaches.
Optimizely knows your MarTech stack will have a unique collection of tools from different providers that must work together. Thankfully, Optimizely’s extensive integration options make it easy to fold in a wide portfolio of market-leading tools without creating headaches. Optimizely removes as many roadblocks from testing and personalization programs as possible and provides the features to help teams be successful today and in the future.
Optimizely Scales with Your Business
It’s impossible to know the future with certainty, but jumping on trends now lets you prepare with plenty of time to spare. Optimizely doesn’t demand you use every feature right away, and the platform will grow to match your company. As your needs change and expand, Optimizely will be there to ensure you have what you need. Optimizely will meet every need as your primary testing tool with excellent testing and personalization features, program management tools, and CDP and CMS functionality, regardless of size and scope.
Even if you don’t use an Optimizely feature today, the platform will always be ready when it’s time to grow.
No matter which direction you decide to explore in the future, Optimizely will have your back. Their integrated hub lets you capture new ideas, organize projects, and manage experiments across different groups so your team can easily collaborate. There is no time limit for an experiment lifecycle – and no matter how much you add or change, Optimizely has features to keep page load speed consistent with asynchronous code loading. Even if you don’t use an Optimizely feature today, the platform will always be ready when it’s time to grow.
Final Thoughts and Considerations – 3 Next Steps
Tool transitions are always a challenge. The shift from Google Optimize to another testing and personalization tool is no different. Making the change without losing momentum means striking a tricky balance. Make sure you:
- Do your homework – this is a big decision.
- Don’t procrastinate – Google Optimize is going away and you can’t afford to wait.
- Plan for the future – This isn’t about replacing Google Optimize. It’s about charting your best optimization future.
Whether your organization chooses Optimizely or a different platform to replace Google Optimize, the transition will always come with challenges. Making the jump without losing momentum or sacrificing priorities won’t be easy, but this is where an expert partner can help. Based on our experience, we highly recommend you consider Optimizely as your next testing and personalization platform. If you need help in building your optimization plan, choosing the right optimization platform, and implementing a new optimization solution for maximum value and impact, contact BlastX.