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Google launches free Optimize A/B testing tool for SMBs

Google's new tool runs on top of Google Analytics to allow small businesses to test and experiment with multiple versions of their company website.

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Google Optimize, recently launched out of beta, offers small businesses a free way to test and improve their company website.

Google Optimize is aimed at small businesses and professionals and it is the free version of Google Optimize 360. It began beta testing six months ago. Meanwhile, the core version of Google Optimize 360 began beta testing earlier in 2016. Both provide website testing in conjunction with Google Analytics and Google Tag Manager and both are available in 180 countries.

Both versions of the tools allow businesses to try out different versions of their company websites to see how each version performs based on the desired outcomes. They allow for a full A/B test with a WYSIWYG visual editor with drag-and-drop components. Tests can be targeted to specific types of users, and URL rules can be set to determine the pages that should be tested.

Optimize is free, but Optimize 360 is not. Optimize 360 doesn't have a price listed online, but Convert has listed it at more than $150,000 a year. The differences are mainly in how many tests can be run at once. The free version only allows for three concurrent tests, and target metrics are limited to three as well. Optimize 360 has unlimited tests and target metrics available.

SEE: How do multi-device consumers really behave? Google thinks Analytics 360 Suite will tell you (ZDNet)

The testing option is already proving to be popular, with approximately 250,000 users asking for access to Google Optimize since it entered beta last year, according to Google.

Three big takeaways for TechRepublic readers:

  1. Google has released Optimize out of beta and it's free to use so that businesses can test various versions of their websites.
  2. Optimize A/B is the free version of the pricey Optimize 360, which some have pegged as high as $150,000 a year.
  3. The free version has the same features as the more expensive one, but it is limited in how many concurrent tests can be conducted on your site.

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