Partner Roundtable: Optimizely and Drumline Digital


Mona Teo-Rubinsztajn

June 20, 2023 | 5 min read

Last Updated: Jun 21, 2023

We understand the value of partnerships at Contentsquare, working with an extensive network of service providers (our Contentsquare Solution Partners) to help our customers drive as much value and ROI as possible from our platform as possible. 

We’d like to help our customers understand that value, too—and the relationships we have with our partners.  

To that end, we’re turning the spotlight on two of our partners: Evan Rollins, co-founder of digital services company Drumline Digital and Simon McDonald, VP of Revenue for the experimentation platform Optimizely

We sat down at a roundtable with Evan and Simon to discuss how Optimizely integrates with our platform, the value their customers have seen as a result of this integration and their personal favorite Contentsquare products.

They also shared their expert insights into driving ROI through digital channels and building the best possible customer experience for your business.

For digital leaders reading this, could you share some best practices for maximizing ROI with your digital channels? 

Evan Rollins (co-founder, Drumline Digital): My biggest tip is to avoid hype, whether in a pitch meeting, a product demo, or a ‘connected, all-in-one personalisation ecosystem’.

You might have a hyped-up vision for your brand and customers in mind, but you need to start by thinking practically about one (or five, or ten) specific things you can work on to start making that vision a reality.

For example, we’re strapped to an out-of-control AI hype train right now on the back of OpenAI and ChatGPT. Now, these technologies might totally transform your business in the long run. Practically speaking, though, this transformation might start with something relatively small, like an AI-assisted search and filter for products. Peg value on practicality.

Simon McDonald (VP of Revenue for Optimizely): Most of the clients we speak to want to see a rapid return on their investment. Therefore, investing in platforms that have a track record of quickly increasing revenue and improving a client’s digital strategy is paramount. 

Choosing the right partner to help build a strategy that aligns that technology with your business goals is also critical for success.

How does your platform work/integrate with Contentsquare?

Evan Rollins: We’re ANZ’s most specialised and certified Contentsquare solution partner, so we use Contentsquare a lot! We see Contentsquare as an upstream and downstream way of showcasing real insight instead of reports. 

We see Contentsquare as a tool for showcasing real insight (not just reports) both upstream and downstream. 

Through our partnership with Optimizely, we use Contentsquare upstream to identify the size and value of customer audiences we need to run Optimizely experiments on to maximize improvements to the CX and revenue of our clients’ websites. 

Downstream, we use Contentsquare to understand why Optimizely experiments worked (or didn’t) by looking at how users’ journeys were influenced, whether they really noticed the changes we made or if there were unintended consequences! 

Contentsquare gives us a level of data detail closer to customer interaction compared to other tools, and helps us keep the customer’s experience in mind.

Simon McDonald: When they’re used together, Contentsquare and Optimizely provide clients with the ability to understand their client’s behavior in detail and run experiments to optimize their experiences based on that understanding. In short, clients can use Contentsquare to identify the UX/UI areas where they need to optimize, and then use Optimizely to build experiments that guide their future optimization efforts.

Can you share an example of how your clients saw value from your partnership? 

Evan Rollins: Contentsquare and Optimizely support each other in two key ways. Firstly, Contentsquare provides powerful insights that can be used to create better experiments in Optimizely. Secondly, Contentsquare enables us to evaluate an Optimizely activity after the fact (or during) using granular user-level insight.

Drumline has been using both these methods to date to build better experiments that are much more likely to show real value to customers, and to generate iterative ideas—and we’ve been having great success doing this for a global, leading sportswear brand. 

So to take an example from our work with that client, we ran a PDP test using the two platforms test to explore how users find sizes for styles low in stock. This test showed us that users were engaging with specific HTML elements around changes we’d made, and this led us to execute a series of data-backed iterations on that test.

An often under-considered benefit of Optimizely and Contentsquare is that they build trust around decisions made in a global organization.

For example, we’re currently working with the local team that primarily looks after Australia and New Zealand. They’re on a shoestring budget compared to global teams, which means it’s important for them to build a lot of trust around the reasons they’re taking actions, and that any experimentation they’re carrying out is handled in a way that works with the rest of the business’s teams and stakeholders.

As the partner embedded close to client teams, Drumline Digital has been able to help the local team show the wider business the value on the table for each activity, the current impact to users and why using Contentsquare’s Impact quantification, Zoning Analysis and Session Replay features matters to them. This turns an Excel prioritization game into a highly visual, tangible demonstration of how customers can be given a better experience. Over time, Contentsquare has grown in prevalence as a trusted source of user data for the region, especially for new user flows and design changes.

We also collaborated with that organisation’s global teams to define how Optimizely can be used by the business in a scalable, decentralized way. This was especially important as all of their engineering team were centrally housed!

Having all experimentation across the organization run through Optimizely means that there’s complete visibility of the activities being run from global, as well as regionally. It also means that everybody is adhering to a consistent system of designing, building and interpreting experiments, so that when new features are added to the production backlog there is a shared code base for referencing.

Over a period of approximately nine months this sportswear brand went from feeling unable to use data in a regular way, and conducting zero experiments, to running a successful experimentation programme that has been rolled out to all regions globally. They’ve also seen a 7% increase in CVR for their engaged audiences!

Contentsquare is the leading digital experience analytics platform. Drumline Digital is one of the most experienced CX and MarTech agencies I’ve encountered. Collectively we form an amazing team that helps clients increase revenue and improve their digital strategy. Simon McDonald, VP of Revenue, Optimizely

What’s your favorite Contentsquare tool and why? 

Evan Rollins: As a cop-out, I have two that are tied. Journey Analysis is the best journey explorer tool in the market—bar none. It makes it easy to analyze journeys at-a-glance, segment user groups and explore in great detail how customers are using websites.

The other is Impact Quantification. The number of times I’ve seen someone call out a really interesting insight, only to later report that it’s only relevant for 18 users… Impact Quantification immediately eliminates that problem, breaking every insight down by its size, value and its impact on specific devices, trends and segments of your user base.  This shortcuts an analyst’s job, saving them hours, and gives a brand all the information they need at their fingertips to start prioritizing.

Finally, what’s a customer experience (CX) hill you’d be willing to die on? 

Evan Rollins: Beautiful experiences are also fast and smooth experiences—one 404 link or slow payment gateway and users are gone. Get the foundations right first!

Simon McDonald: Without data to back your CX, you’re just guessing, and you will fail. It’s incredibly challenging to retrofit data into your CX strategy, so create the framework from the start and iterate as you go.

Discover Contentsquare’s partners and platform today

Head over to our Solution Partners page to find out more about the service providers we work with to make sure our customers are able to optimize their digital experiences as efficiently and effectively as possible.

And check out the product demo below to find out how our digital experience analytics platform can help you build a digital customer experience that delights customers and drives growth.

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