Don't Worry, Google's Website Optimizer Won't Replace You

Google made its Website Optimizer tool free for anyone who wants to run conversion, design and multivariate tests on their landing pages, and some in the search community have voiced concerns about whether it will slim the pickings for search firms. If clients can run their own tests, will they pull back from search budgets? Perhaps rely a little less on their agency for other things as well? Resolution Media's Jeff Campbell says no.

Google Website Optimizer is a tool--nothing more, nothing less, Campbell argues, and a tool in the absence of strategic thinking is worthless. "Prior to even using the tool, the strategy must be developed, data analysis completed, benchmarks/KPIs established, hypothesis written, confidence intervals agreed upon, etc," he says. And that's what clients look to search firms for.

Meanwhile, the free optimizer tool is also geared toward the lowest common denominator of advertisers. "Like GA (Google Analytics), GWO is built for the general masses and that will not suit advanced/custom experiments or data analysis," Campbell says.

And then there's the whole church and state concern. "Be it justified or not, there is reluctance to share conversion data (and profitability) with a media vendor who sets pricing (i.e. minimum bids for AdWords placement)," Campbell says.

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Tags: search
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