Google Optimize Sunsetting: What it Means for Advertisers
Google Optimize, a powerful tool for website optimization and A/B testing, has long been a go-to solution for advertisers seeking to enhance their online marketing strategies. However, Google recently communicated that after five years, Optimize and Optimize 360 website testing and analytics tools will no longer be available for use from September 30 this year as they continue the transition to Google Analytics 4. This news has left many advertisers pondering the implications and seeking alternatives as this was the only big advertising platform to offer a free plan.
In this blog post, we will take a look at:
- The Rationale Behind The Phase-out
- The Implications for Advertisers
- Exploring Alternative Options
The Rationale behind Google Optimize’s Phase-out
Google’s decision to phase out Google Optimizer is driven by various factors. One key consideration is the company’s continuous efforts to streamline their product offerings and consolidate resources. Google Optimize has been a longstanding product but lacked features that many marketers found essential.
As Google continues the push towards Google Analytics 4 this change gives them the opportunity to invest more heavily on A/B testing integrations that are in line with the G4 roadmap and although there is no time frame on this, the promise of improved performance is likely to lead to much better customer experience for users.
It is a signal that Google wants to focus more on its core platforms and products that align with their long-term strategic goals; moreover, as technology continues to evolve and market demands shift, it has created a path for the emergence of cutting-edge optimisation tools that boast a wider array of functionalities and seamless integrations.
What are the implications for Advertisers?
The phasing out of Google Optimize will undoubtedly have some sort of impact on advertisers who have come to rely on the platform for their optimisation needs. What happens to all of those tests you’ve built? How do you maintain access to all the data that’s accumulated through your variety of tests? All important questions to answer. Marketers who can; should immediately start wrapping up tests and downloading the data to ensure future access and the option to migrate this data to new tools.
Whilst it is true that Google Optimize’s free features have only really been suited to smaller companies or initiatives, it is important for businesses of all sizes to take a step back to look at opportunities to test and generate data for optimising their activities, here are some challenges to take into account as you move away from Google Optimize.
Transition and Learning Curve
When considering alternative solutions to Google Optimizer, advertisers need to take into account the transition process and the learning curve associated with adopting new platforms or tools. It is important to recognise that moving away from a familiar tool like Google Optimizer will require time and resources to ensure a smooth transition. This requires advertisers to allocate sufficient time for the transition phase. This includes setting aside resources for training and onboarding team members to become familiar with the new platform or tool.
For advertisers who have integrated Google Optimizer with other marketing tools or platforms, the transition to alternative solutions may present integration challenges. The seamless flow of data and synchronisation between existing system setups could be disrupted, potentially impacting the overall effectiveness of marketing efforts.
We recommend taking time to review and where possible move away from Google Optimize as soon as possible, to avoid the effects of the ‘sunsetting’. With careful evaluation and meticulous planning, these challenges can be overcome, ensuring a seamless and successful transition.
When assessing feature parity, advertisers need to examine the key functionalities provided by Google Optimizer and compare them with the capabilities of the alternative solutions. This may include aspects such as A/B testing capabilities, multivariate testing options, support for different types of experiments (e.g., landing page, email, or website testing), integration with analytics platforms, and reporting capabilities. Businesses need to prioritise their optimisation goals and identify the critical features that they require from an optimization tool. For instance, if the brand relies heavily on A/B testing to refine their website’s user experience, they should ensure that any alternative solution they consider provides robust A/B testing capabilities.
Exploring Alternative Optimization Tools
With the discontinuation of Google Optimize, a significant market share will now seek alternative A/B testing platforms. Fortunately, there are already numerous solutions that offer a range of features that Optimize lacks, leaving marketers with ample choices to fill the void left by its departure. It is essential for Advertisers to be agile in adapting and exploring alternative solutions to ensure their campaigns continue to deliver optimal results.
Let’s take a look at some alternative tools including some that Google is currently collaborating with on integration:
VWO the self described ‘number one A/B testing tool in the world’ is another prominent tool that enables advertisers with A/B testing, personalisation, heatmaps, and other conversion optimisation features. It offers a user-friendly interface and allows for seamless integration with various marketing platforms. VWO also provides a free plan with basic functionalities, allowing advertisers to test their campaigns before committing to a paid plan.
Adobe Target is a comprehensive optimisation and personalisation platform that provides advanced targeting capabilities, AI-driven optimization, and cross-channel testing. It integrates seamlessly with the Adobe Marketing Cloud ecosystem, offering a unified solution for advertisers. Adobe Target also offers a free trial, allowing advertisers to evaluate the platform’s functionalities before subscribing to a paid plan.
AB Tasty is a versatile A/B testing and personalisation platform that presents marketers with the opportunity to optimise their digital experiences. The tool has an intuitive interface and visual editor, that allows easy creation and management of A/B tests, whilst advanced targeting capabilities allow for personalised content delivery. The platform offers comprehensive features such as multivariate testing, funnel analysis, and integration with various marketing tools. What’s more, as an official Google Cloud partner, AB Tasty has a special discount for Google Optimize users, free migration services for test history and data and 1:1 support to make the switch as easy as possible.’
A/B testing isn’t solely relevant for websites or landing pages, optimising the ads and campaigns that bring people to your website is just as important for creating the optimal website experience for your audience. Bannerflow’s Creative Campaign Management offers robust A/B testing capabilities for refining your creatives, heat maps for optimising design placement, and extensive optimisation possibilities through dynamic content personalisation. These features empower businesses to continuously improve their digital advertising strategies, enhance performance, and achieve their campaign objectives.
The phasing out of Google Optimize necessitates a proactive approach from advertisers in exploring alternative optimisation tools. While the transition may present challenges, it also offers an opportunity to discover innovative solutions that can enhance campaign performance and deliver better results. Through the evaluation of implications, exploration of suitable alternatives, and taking into account the best practices for transitioning, advertisers can adapt to the evolving optimisation landscape and continue to optimise their advertising campaigns effectively. Stay informed, plan ahead, and embrace the new opportunities that lie ahead in the realm of advertising optimisation.
Want to see how our Creative Campaign Management tool can help you improve your ROI? Reach out to us for a demo today!