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Optimizely Knowledge Base

Checklist: Implement Optimizely Web

  • Implement the basic technical setup for Optimizely Web

With Optimizely, adding a small snippet of code to your site enables you to start experimenting immediately. But we recommend that you take a little extra time. This checklist helps you implement Optimizely for long-term success. 

Use the checklist to perform an audit of your site's technical framework and complete your setup. You’ll perform most these tasks just once, unless major changes to your site or business model alter the technical specifications of your site. Once you're done, you'll be able to build and run experiments and campaigns in Optimizely Web.

Document the technical specifications and initial setup in an implementation document and link it to your testing charter. Update your technical audit document whenever your Optimizely setup changes. This document will help your team keep track of the types of experiments you can run in each project and troubleshoot.

Use this list as written if you're implementing Optimizely for the first time.

Here's an advanced implementation checklist that you can use to explore deeper functionality in Optimizely.

Here's a whitepaper on optimizing performance for client-side experimentation.


Site requirements checklist


What technology frameworks are used on your site?

If you use Angular, Backbone, Ember, or Knockout, you may need to change the activation mode that you use on pages. Pages are URL templates that tell Optimizely where and how to activate experiments and Personalization campaigns.

When you set up pages in Optimizely, use conditional or manual activation to ensure that experiments activate appropriately. Here are resources on How Optimizely works with SPAs and Using Optimizely with UI libraries like React and Vue


Does your team have access to separate staging and production environments?

Yes. Use a separate snippet and project for each environment. This guide steps through how to set up Optimizely for two environments.

No. Set up your production project:

  1. Implement the snippet.

  2. Add collaborators to your project.


Account settings checklist


How will you protect your Optimizely account?

Two-step verification, single sign-on, and password expiration settings help you keep your Optimizely account secure.


Do you want to anonymize your visitors' IP addresses?

In some countries, you may be required to remove the last block of an IP address to protect the identity of your visitors.

Here's how to enable IP anonymization.


Project settings checklist


Does your site include multiple origins: such as different subdomains or security protocols? An “origin” is a combination of a specific hostname, security protocol, and port on your site.

By default, Optimizely tracks events on the same origin.

To track visitor behaviors across different origins, make sure you enable cross-origin targeting. If this isn't set up, Optimizely won't be able to track visitors across origins (i.e. across subdomains and security protocols).

If your experiment depends on origin data being synced, you'll need to use waitForOriginSync when switching origins.


What technology platforms will you integrate with Optimizely?

Here's a list of best-of-breed platforms that Optimizely integrates with.

The most successful experimentation programs leverage Optimizely’s integrations. You not only maximize the information that you’re getting from different data sources -- you gain the ability to segment results for impactful business insights.


Do you need to manage multiple analytics integrations on the same page? Are you targeting experiments on changes that happen on your page without reloading?

Project JavaScript lets you run code before the Optimizely code snippet runs, without changing your native site's code. You can run more advanced experiments that depend on reusable variables, targeting conditions, and API calls with ease and efficiency.


What are your site's privacy requirements?

Optimizely allows you to customize your settings to increase privacy, help with easy QA and debugging, and ensure compliance with legal requirements.

Set up privacy settings for your account.


Implementation checklist


On which URLs will you run experiments and campaigns on your site? And on which URLs will you want to track visitor actions?

How will you measure whether an experiment or campaign is successful?

Here's a walkthrough to help you prepare your Optimizely Web project for your site by setting up four major components: pages, events, tags, and audiences.

You can add more later, but creating them now will help your organization run experiments with greater velocity.


What visitor segments are you interested in seeing more granular results for?

For example: Logged-in visitors, or a list of customers in your database.

The Results page gives you an aggregate of the change in behavior across all visitors. But visitors to your site aren't all the same. 

It's useful to segment results by characteristics that are important to your business. Custom attributes let you to define these characteristics.


Are there visitor actions that are important on your site that aren't captured by clicks or pageviews?

For example: pop-up modal views, form submissions, or drop-offs in an order form.

Custom events help you track actions beyond clicks and pageviews.

Talk to your product manager and analytics team to find key events. What behaviors determine success on each page? Revisit these on regular basis to consider parts of your site that have changed.


Would you like to be able to add custom visual elements like bannerscarousels, and lightboxes to your site, using the Visual Editor?

Extensions are reusable templates that help you make changes in the Visual Editor. A developer builds it once, then you'll easily add and edit it without writing additional code.

Here's Optimizey's library of pre-built extensions.

Available on select Optimizely packages.


Is revenue a key metric that you'd like to be able to track in Optimizely?

Here's how to set up revenue tracking.


Do you want to experiment on your payment or checkout page?

Optimizely is PCI-compliant, so you can safely experiment across your full checkout funnel.


Are you using the JavaScript API or REST API?

Both APIs are updated for Optimizely: JavaScript API or REST API.