Multivariate Testing the Process for a Successful Site Firms annually spend millions, if not billions of dollars across the globe just on marketing. Corporations realize that if they do not offer the services or products that the buying public wants then they will soon be out of business. But in order to know what their customers want firms can make educated guesses and fully expect to be out of business shortly thereafter. That is why, instead, they will hire marketing firms to conduct Multivariate testing for them. Multivariate testing is where on a client’s website an identical site that looks and functions just like the client site which will be used to conduct real time testing of customers. This is identified as an A/B test. With A/B testing, the room for error is reduced because actual clients of a firm are actually using the firm’s site and interacting with their products and services in real time. The customers who would buy and use the very services that the firm offers would provide would be the actual test subjects in the Multivariate testing. And while they were being tested, they would experience the website as if it was a regular day surfing on the web. The process would begin not on the website but in the meeting room at the corporate headquarters where the marketing department would team up with the web developers of the marketing firm to decide on the sittings of the testing: What part of the website would be tested What feature(s) would be stressed Would the checkout be enabled Could the visitors be allowed to leave feedback How to track the visitors after they leave the site Which departments would have access to this data How long would the test site be enabled These types of questions would be written into the Multivariate test as well as what answers were and were not acceptable based on the business model the client Is looking for. With the answers gathered from this test, the marketing firm would then compile the data and present it to the firm along with their analysis of the data. This would then be discussed generally inside of the firm’s accounting, marketing and technical support departments. They would then brainstorm and determine from the data if any of their targeted goal were possible, and if so, would it fit within the company’s budget. If it was determined that the stated goal was not financially possible, then the accounting department would have to comb through the data to figure out what they really liked, what they wanted and what they need. Then, based on the budget, they would choose first what is needed and if they had anything left in the budget, then they would try to add the additional features to the website that they liked and wanted. Next the proposal would be moved on to the marketing department who would then start doing sample testing across the country and in some cases around the world. Those that returned with positive feedback would be pushed to the top of the marketing department’s wish list. Finally, it would be moved on to the technical department, with the mandate to make the marketing department’s wish list work in the real world. That Apple IPad that is on the wish list of one and all did not just happen to appear on their website. Before it did, Apple scheduled a Multivariate test to find out what users liked and did not like and then tried to make it happen within budget.