Server-side A/B testing is a form of product, website, or marketing testing that evaluates two different website design elements on the backend before making it live to site users.
A/B testing is a form of evaluation in which a business creates two different versions of something and measures which is more successful. For ecommerce websites, there are two main types of A/B testing: client-side and server-side testing.
While client-side testing occurs directly on the user’s browser, server-side testing occurs on the backend web server, so users don’t see modifications made until the changes go live.
Businesses use server-side A/B testing when they want to evaluate the performance of a site change without disrupting the user’s experience. This kind of testing also introduces random variability, which potentially strengthens the experiment’s results. When a user visits a page, the test will randomly serve up either an A or B element from the backend.
Server-side A/B testing requires more coding than client-side testing, so it’s best used in businesses with strong IT departments or for larger experimental scopes.