Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Google Bows Web Site Optimization Tool

Google Bows Web Site Optimization Tool

by Tobi Elkin, Wednesday, Apr 4, 2007 6:00 AM ET

ADDING TO ITS ALREADY ENORMOUS toolbox, Google today launches Google Website Optimizer, a product designed to help Web site owners test drive different landing pages in order to determine which designs drive the most conversions.

Depending on the type of business, those conversions might be sales, downloads of information, viewing video, and other kinds of transactions.

Website Optimizer, which was released as a closed beta in fall 2006, is integrated with Google AdWords and free to AdWords advertisers. Google considers Website Optimizer the third leg of the proverbial stool with AdWords dedicated to driving Web traffic and Google Analytics focused on measuring Web activity.

The new Website Optimizer is dedicated to converting visitors into customers and improving Web pages, according to Tony Leung, product manager, Google. The tool allows advertisers to receive up to 10,000 versions of a Web page.

"This tool lets you have one page, add a few Java scripts and then when visitors hit the page, there are different combinations served," Leung said.

Most Web sites, Leung said, are designed in the dark in terms of the kinds of landing pages that work most effectively.

"We were trying to solve a problem about which types of landing pages work," he said.

Website Optimizer allows advertisers to have one page, perhaps a home page, add some Java scripts to the page, and then be able to show visitors different versions of that page. Advertisers can then track and see which version is most effective for their purposes in terms of driving return on investment.

The new tool represents one of the biggest product launches in a while for Google's AdWords business, Leung said. Advertisers can sign up for Website Optimizer at

Separately, Google also launched a new partner program called Google Website Optimizer Authorized Consultants. Optimost, EpikOne, Future Now, ROI Revolution, and, providers of conversion optimization services, are charter members of the group.

"Until your conversion rate is 100%, there's always room for improvement," Leung said.

Tobi Elkin is Editor-at-Large, MediaPost. Email her at


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