New cloud service launched by Testivate

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Testivate has launched a new cloud service. According to the company, the new service thoroughly benchmarks websites and other customer touchpoints in days or even hours, at a fraction of the cost of engaging an ecommerce consultant.

Faster, cheaper, objective benchmarks

Testivate adds that online retailers constantly benchmark their websites against their competitors, and against best practice. However, says the company, all the benchmarking methods of the past have serious problems. Usually, retailers engage a consultant or put one of their product managers on the task, but both these options are costly, slow and potentially biased. Testivate claims to offer a new way forward, with faster, cheaper, objective benchmarks.

"Online retail is a hectic business. When we're making important decisions, we need facts and we need them fast," said Jethro Marks, co-founder of The Nile, one of Australia and New Zealand's largest online department stores. "We need competitor benchmarks delivered at internet speed, and that's what Testivate delivers."

A new approach to benchmarking

"Benchmarking has long been the domain of consultants, recording their personal views in endless Excel spreadsheets," said Steven Noble, Testivate's founder and principal analyst. "Testivate propels this 20th century business model into the internet age."

Behind the scenes, Testivate is a sophisticated software system that automates the entire benchmarking process. It takes care of tailoring research questions to match each client's circumstances. Then it sends these questions to hundreds of experts, average consumers and even intelligent software agents, and collates their answers. Finally, it automatically builds detailed reports that show exactly where each retailer sits compared to their competitors and best practice.

"I wish Testivate existed when I was flat-out growing Deals Direct into a multi-million business," said Paul Greenberg, CEO of the National Online Retailers Association (NORA), chair of the Online Retail Industry Awards (ORIAs) judging panel, and chair of Testivate's advisory board. "The ORIAs judging panel is always careful to follow a consistent assessment process. Indeed, this is one of the keys to the awards' success. For the latest ORIAs, we shortlisted 31 retailers. The judges could have spent hundreds of hours trying to compressively benchmark that many websites by hand, but thanks to Testivate, we didn't have to. Testivate took that task off our plate, and armed us with the data that we needed to understand how each of these online retailers compared to the other entrants."

On-site search that converts

Creating a sensational retail site search experience is one of the keys to selling more online. This is why Testivate's first product is the Retail Site Search Benchmark, which measures every area from how the retailer's website handles search errors to how its competitors are using search results to turn visitors into buyers. With these insights, retailers can quickly make great decisions about how they'll build an on-site search system that converts.

Product & price

Testivate offers two versions of every benchmark.

A premium report benchmarks the client's website and four of its competitors. It costs US$2999 and is delivered in two business days.

A standard report benchmarks the client's website and two of its competitors. It costs US$999 and is delivered in seven business days.

Even if a consultant was capable of preparing a report of the same depth and quality as a Testivate benchmark, they would charge US$50,000 to US$200,000 and take several months to do so.

The future of Testivate

"Our Retail Site Search Benchmark is just the beginning" said Noble. "We've already used our software to benchmark mobile apps and other customer touchpoints. We've already used it to help financial institutions. Soon we'll have benchmarking products for every segment and every touchpoint that connects companies to their customers."

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