Multivariate Testing

What is multivariate testing?

Multivariate testing is a method of determining which combination of variables such as graphics, CTAs, and copy is most effective for a website, app, or ad by trying out different options and observing audience response. 

Why is multivariate testing important?

Multivariate testing is important because it can give broadly applicable insights about what a brand’s audience responds to and inform optimization strategies. 

Benefits of multivariate testing

Multivariate testing is an important element of digital presence optimization because it gives a brand actionable information about which design elements work best for their audience and goals. Some of the benefits of multivariate testing include saving time over running consecutive A/B tests, gaining an understanding of an audience's generalized preferences, and guiding effective content and creative. 

  • Advantages of MVT over A/B testing 
  • Multivariate testing can give information on the nuances of a user interface and can be used to refine design elements such as the color of a CTA button after A/B testing has already guided more general elements such as the page layout. 

Downsides of multivariate testing

Some downsides of multivariate testing (MVT) include the difficulty of interpreting results since multiple elements of a design are being tested at once, and the amount of time it takes to run a proper MVT with enough traffic on each variation for the results to be useful. 

Examples of multivariate testing

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Multivariate testing might show changes in font or color of CTA’s alongside changes in visual elements such as graphics. 

  • A green “Buy Now” button at the top of the page vs a blue “Purchase Here” button on the top right. 
  • Product photos on the homepage that show products in natural landscapes with and without people vs in homes with and without people in them. 
  • Testing each combination of three headlines, three cover images, and three fonts.

What type of company can use MVT tests?

Any type of company that wishes to optimize their digital presence can use and benefit from multivariate testing (MVT) but apps and websites with higher traffic will produce better results since the audience must be split to each variation. MVT is most valuable for companies with an established presence who have made large decisions about their brand’s aesthetic but wish to refine and optimize design elements and functionality.