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SiteSpect debuts mobile content testing, optimization service

SiteSpect Inc. has launched a new mobile Web optimization functionality within its multivariate and A/B testing offering.

The company claims the new offering is the only multivariate testing and behavioral targeting platform that works on all mobile devices.

"What we're helping people is bringing the same tried-and-true testing that people have been doing offline in print, in television and obviously, for several years now, through Internet Web sites," said Eric J. Hansen, president of SiteSpect, Boston. "We're now bringing that to the mobile arena."

The SiteSpect service doesn't require JavaScript or cookies. It can test and track behavior across any type of content including WML, HTML, CSS and streaming media.

In essence, mobile site operators can non-intrusively test variations of any content and track visitor behavior to see which versions engage or persuade consumers.

Using SiteSpect, online companies can optimize their mobile content by gauging which content has the most influence on a visitor's behavior. It can determine the ways to persuade visitors to follow the desire action.

Also, mobile content is optimized by running targeted offers and content to visitors based on browsing device, current and past behavior, origin of visit, time of visit and language.

The net result of such tests is to help online marketers boost conversion, registrations and end-user adoption of self-service functions.

The widespread availability of mobile phones, many of them with Internet access, means that marketers need to optimize mobile content.

But testing and targeting is tough due to the 2,000 types of mobile phones and devices used worldwide.

For instance, many mobile phones have limited or no support for JavaScript or cookies. So testing only compatible devices skews campaign data toward certain demographics.

"No one's done marketing for mobile devices," Mr. Hansen said. "You can try to take best practices off-the-shelf that have worked for other mediums. But the risk is that they're not going to be optimal.

"So the risk is you're not going to be communicating with your database in the way that it's most effective for the device," he said.

"In Web 1.0, the inception of dot-coms, you saw lots of sites that looked like scanned brochures. Now you risk doing it all over again. You can't take your current site and jam it into a small screen."