We’ve compiled and organized a set of answers to the most commonly-asked questions about Optimizely Classic.
Don’t see your question on this list? We welcome your feedback! Please scroll to the bottom of the page to click open the dialog box. Select the No option, then let us know what you're looking for.
Looking for the definitive guide to getting up and running with Optimizely? Learn and practice your Optimizely skills and web optimization strategy in Optimizely Academy. Or check out these short videos that explain how to set up an experiment, how to QA your experiment, and how to interpret your results.
I'm getting a "There is no account you have permissions for" error when I try to log in
This means your account is not linked to any project. Your Optimizely account was created when you were added as a collaborator, and now you have been removed. Please ask an administrator to re-add you to the Optimizely project you're working on.
I need help from the support team regarding log in
Still can't log in? On the Home Page,choose Need help logging in? and then Still can't log in? Request help. This sends an account recovery request to our support team, who will contact you within 24 hours.
Which version of Optimizely do I have?
If you are confused about whether you are running Optimizely Classic or Optimizely X Web, check out this article that explains how to tell the difference.
This article describes how to switch to the Optimizely X (standalone) snippet.
Is it possible to run experiments on multiple domains with one account?
You can run experiments on as many domains as you like with a single account. In fact, you can actually use the Options > URL Targeting controls to run a single experiment on multiple domains at the same time. However, you'll want to be aware of Optimizely's cross-domain tracking limitations.
Some Optimizely plans can create multiple projects to manage different domains. For more information about projects, click here.
What happens if I exceed my monthly unique visitors?
If you exceed your monthly unique visitor (MUV) limit on an annual package or monthly self-serve plan, you will be billed an overage fee. If you feel that you've received this overage in error, please contact our support team and we'll be happy to assist you.
If you exceed the monthly unique visitor limit on the legacy Starter plan, your experiments will be paused until the beginning of the next monthly billing cycle. This cycle begins on the day of the month when you started your subscription.
When your experiments are paused, your visitors will see your original site, and not the variations you created in Optimizely. If you think you need more monthly unique visitors than your plan allows, please call us about a customizable Enterprise plan at 1-800-252-9480.
How do I cancel an account?
To cancel an annual Optimizely account, please contact your Customer Success Manager.
If you're on a legacy (Gold, Silver, or Bronze) plan, you can cancel your subscription at any time by clicking Cancel in the top section of the Billing window.
How will Optimizely Classic affect my pageload times? Will my site lag?
The short answer: no. Your site shouldn't lag, and any delay to pageload times should be undetectable to the human eye.
We understand that even small increases in page load times must be taken seriously, so we do everything we can to make sure that Optimizely's impact on your page is as small as possible.
There are two Optimizely endpoints that receive web requests from your pages while an Optimizely Classic experiment is running:
Your visitors' browser sends tracking requests to Optimizely
How does Optimizely Classic affect my search ranking or search engine optimization (SEO)?
Google permits and encourages A/B testing and has stated that performing an A/B or multivariate test poses no inherent risk to your site’s search rank. However, it is possible to jeopardize your search rank by abusing an A/B testing tool for purposes such as cloaking. We have more in-depth information in our SEO and search ranking article.
What version of jQuery does Optimizely Classic use?
Optimizely Classic uses jQuery version 1.11.3 by default.
How do I find more information about the Optimizely API? Where do I generate a token?
The Optimizely REST API lets you create and manage Optimizely projects and the experiments inside of them. The API is RESTful and encodes data in JSON. The sections below explain how to authenticate with the API, form requests, and consume responses.
Is there a delay between when I click Save Experiment and when my changes are reflected live?
When you save an experiment, there are two delays that you may run into when attempting to preview your variations:
There may be a delay of up to 5 minutes before that file is then propagated to the edges on Optimizely's CDN (Akamai). You can access this file directly at this URL: http://cdn.optimizely.com/js/XXXXX.js where XXXXX is your Account ID. This file is referenced directly in your Optimizely snippet (click "Implementation" in the Optimizely Editor).
How does this affect you? Here's a timeline illustrating when you'll be able to observe new changes:
t = 0 : "Save Experiment" clicked
t = 5 seconds : Hosted Preview should now work correctly if you don't have your snippet on your site
t = 5 minutes : Live Preview should now work correctly if you do have your snippet on your site
How do I test two pages against each other?
If you want to test two URLs against each other -- such as two home pages or two landing pages, you'll set up a redirect experiment.
If you'd like to test two entire sites against each other and map the URLs one to one -- such as in a redesign -- try redirect URL mapping.
How can I run an experiment on a shopping cart that exists behind a login?
Certain browsers have recently implemented a security measure, which blocks insecure content (for example, an http image) from being loaded by an https page.
We have an article describing mixed content and how to enable it.
Finally, make sure your site can be iFramed.
If you have confirmed both of the above and you are still unable to get your page into the Editor, there may be a restriction on your own website that is preventing Optimizely from loading your page.
Check with your developer team to see if your site’s security settings allow it to be iFramed by a third party domain. For more information, read Combating Clickjacking with xFrame Options (non-Optimizely article).
I want to make changes to an element that appears on many pages, like a navigation bar, and make sure it stays consistent for visitors. How can I run an experiment on an element that appears on multiple pages?
Recommended - URL Targeting Substring Match: The most common way to ensure your experiment runs across all product pages on your site is to use a substring match in Options > URL Targeting. We walk you through how to set this up in our URL Targeting article.
Regular Expressions or Custom Tags: If there is no unique substring that is shared across your target page URLS, you’ll need to use a Regular Expression match or add custom tags to each page you want to target.
Experiment CSS: If you're making site-wide changes, you can use Optimizely's Experiment CSS tool to add that CSS in.
Modifying Selectors: When possible, tag every item with a shared class (for items in common) and a unique ID, both across your domain and page to page. This will allow you to understand and specify what you're targeting and changing within the variation code. If you are code-savvy and know what selector you want to change, you can modify the selectors yourself in the Edit Code box.
I used the Edit HTML feature in the Editor to make changes, but now my interactive elements aren't working. Why did Edit HTML remove some functionality?
Edit HTML should only be used to edit specific and static content on a page. For more information, read about Edit HTML in our Visual Editor article.
I made a change to an element using Interactive Mode in the Editor. Why do I see changes to an interactive element in the Editor, but not live?
When making edits to an element on the page that is not immediately visible, such as a pop-up modal, you will often run into a timing issue where the variation code is running too soon to make the needed changes. To resolve this, you can set up manual activation mode.
How do I target experiments based on phones, tablets, or mobile devices?
If you want to create an experiment targeting (or excluding) visitors on certain devices, you should use audience conditions.
Goals and results
How does Optimizely count conversions?
Optimizely counts conversions based on unique visitors to your page, meaning that regardless of how many times a user triggers a conversion, Optimizely will count it as one visitor and one conversion.
If the visitor doesn’t trigger the conversion goal the first time he or she visits the site, but does so during a subsequent visit while the experiment is still running, the experiment still counts the conversion.
Want to learn more? Watch this short video on how Optimizely counts conversions. (More videos here.)
Check out this short video to learn more about how Optimizely tracks unique visitors. (More videos here.)
My Optimizely results numbers don't match the numbers in my analytics platform, like Google Analytics. Why do I see different results in Optimizely and my analytics platform?
Optimizely and your analytics platform may count visitors differently, but integrating them will help.
If you have not done so already, you should integrate Optimizely and Google Analytics. The integration will allow Optimizely to inform Google Analytics of the experiment and variation that a given visitor was assigned to.
Within your Google Analytics account, you’ll now be able to drill down into the data for visitors who saw one variation vs. another. This will give you a much greater insight into whether the numbers are trending in the same direction.
A primary reason for a discrepancy between your GA numbers and Optimizely’s results boils down to the way a “visitor” is counted. For instance, Google Analytics uses a tracking call that is session based, meaning a single visitor can trigger multiple visits over a given period of time.
Optimizely, on the other hand, uses a 10-year cookie and counts unique users.
For additional information on Google’s sessions, check out their support article on the issue.
I want to track the impact my experiments have on revenue. How can I track purchases as a goal?
If your site has a purchase confirmation page, then the easiest way to track purchase conversions is to set up a pageview goal on the confirmation page.
If you also want to compare revenue for each variation, you can create a revenue goal for your experiment. Please keep in mind that the Optimizely snippet is needed on any page on where you wish to track a goal.
I'm running a redirect experiment, and I see zero conversions for the variation on the Results page. Why don't I see any conversion results for my redirect experiment?
The most common cause for this issue is incorrect goal targeting conditions. We walk through the solution in the linked article.
Do bots get counted in results?
The vast majority of bots that can be identified by the user agent (Google, Bing, Yahoo) will be excluded from the test results. To make sure we don't violate any best practices, the different versions of your page can still be seen by the various crawlers. However, no tracking calls will be made. To make sure that your SEO is not affected, learn more about best practices and search engine optimization when using Optimizely as an A/B testing tool.
I don't want my own internal traffic to affect experiment results. How can I exclude internal traffic from my experiments?
You can filter your internal traffic from showing up on the results page with IP Filtering. See this linked article for more information.