Do you have the GRIT for testing success?

The GRIT framework is an evidence-based optimization model, developed by Mark Fassbender, Global Head of Web Optimisation at LexisNexis.*


The GRIT framework empowers a testing program based on data and actionable insight, to avoid ‘Random Acts of Testing’ (or RATs) and testing based on opinion.


The framework is powered by business objectives and goals, which in turn, define the Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) of the test and testing program. For example, if customer satisfaction is the primary KPI, then the framework is configured to utilize reporting tools and insight that address customer satisfaction scores & qualitative feedback, showing areas of concern.


So, what does GRIT stand for?


Governance: Reflects the processes used to manage a digital property in a stable and efficient manner


Governance takes into consideration both legal and localized compliance to filter the testing program. Proactive governance is educational, using industry benchmarks or benchmarks within your own domain(s) to show value of page hygiene and testing, especially for pages performing below-par.


Reporting: Tracking performance metrics and statistics to provide a macro view of site performance


Reporting is the backbone of what is happening on a domain or page(s). A reporting toolkit is imperative in producing benchmarks that govern the need for optimization. Web analytics tools, internal business intelligence (BI) and content management system (CMS) tools are utilized to identify site performance leakage and inform testing hypotheses based on data.


Insight: Understanding motivation and behavior, using a detailed view of individual experiences


Insight can be gleaned from stitching data sets together to provide an enriched view of the customer.  Unlock this potential lies in the emerging role of the data scientist.  Additional insight tools, such as heat-maps, session replays and voice of customer survey, also allow you to understand why something is happening.


Testing: Comparing results of different creative assets to ensure an optimized user experience


Testing is the output of the framework, where business objective and KPI has been matched with Governance, Reporting and Insight. Testing is therefore prescriptive with a hypothesis formed upon a diagnosis of data and insight. Testing efforts are thereby quantifiable and justified.


For LexisNexis, this framework is imperative to a business that has over 100 domains and application products on which to run a testing program. The challenge is therefore to test smart and “to fish where the fish are.”


Use this framework for every test that feeds into your testing program. Start with the business objective and KPI and establish the best possible measurement of the test.  Ensure that the test is compliant and can be benchmarked. Configure reporting to provide context of what is currently happening and enrich with insight from complimentary tool sets to explain why this is happening. Finally, test with a prescriptive hypothesis.


To maintain the GRIT framework involves many stakeholders around the business: Information management, web analytics, product owners, and 3rd party vendors, to name a few. For a testing program to succeed, it is key to involve these stakeholders early, establish KPIs collaboratively, highlight the most important measure, earn their buy-in, and provide a sense of co-ownership.


In summary, testing everywhere is good, but knowing where to test is testing smart.  Ultimately, the success or failure of a testing program is dependent on the quality of the ideas and hypotheses being fed into it.

GRIT Framework - LexisNexis.png


*LexisNexis originally pioneered online information with its Lexis® and Nexis® services. It is part of the RELX group, the FTSE 100 global professional information solutions provider.  LexisNexis helps customers to achieve their goals in more than 175 countries, across six continents, with over 10,000 employees. 

Learn more about LexisNexis here. Be sure to follow Mark on Twitter at @flashbender.

Read more about web optimization from the HP Optimost team:
Keyword segmentation can turn a failed test into a big success by Robert Brennan
Where the rubber meets the road for customer experience by Uri Kogan
E.ON and Choice Hotels deliver customer experience success with HP Software by Lindsay Sterrett
Are you in control of your web optimization program? by Uri Kogan
Got great test results during your sale period? Don’t expect them to last year round by Sarah Haggett

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