FARFETCH creates an experimentation culture

At a glance

  • Experimentation community has more than doubled in the past year, from 80 people to close to 170

  • 20-50 experiments running each month by the experimentation team

Creating an experimentation culture

Experimentation is only as effective as the people using it, being able to learn from its results. That’s why FARFETCH is so innovative in its approach; actively encouraging and embedding a company-wide culture of experimentation so the platform can offer the best possible digital experiences, without guesswork, whilst also reducing risk. With an end goal of becoming a learning organization on a global scale, FARFETCH wanted to enable teams across the business to use real-time data and to take a ‘test and learn’ approach in their roles. This would allow them to learn from these tests and ultimately enhance the FARFETCH customer experience, faster than its competitors.

Testing the limits with Optimizely

Our experimentation platform has helped us to focus on server-side testing. Optimizely is integrated as part of this platform to extend FARFETCH’s experimentation capacities, in particular when it comes to rapid iteration capabilities on the web platform. The team can test ideas, examine resulting data, and then scale experiment ‘winners,’ utilizing real-time customer feedback throughout the process.

Luis Trindade, Principal Product Manager, FARFETCH, realized the value in experimentation early on, advocating for it to be used across the board to improve how FARFETCH engages its audiences and grow as a business. “Experimentation is absolutely transformational. Every day we are experimenting with our own processes, learning from mistakes, and making iterative improvements. Optimizely allows our teams to outline a very clear hypothesis, then use experimentation to test it out and analyze the feedback. We can then make informed decisions on whether to invest further.”

Industry

Retail and consumer

Product used

Visit

Results

From embarking on its mission to create a unified experimentation culture across its organization, FARFETCH has seen the tremendous power of bringing together people from different product areas to address challenges and seize opportunities using customer insights and experimentation. This approach has not just enabled the organization to fully utilise its entire talent, but strengthened business results. So much so, that the team working with experimentation has increased from 80 people to around 170 in the past year, with anywhere from 20 to 50 experiments running each month.

Greg Sherwin, Senior Principal Engineer at FARFETCH notes, “As a centre of excellence, we help FARFETCH empower individual teams with experimentation. We provide the tools, help with the data, and provide a framework for best practices, but the actual experimentation comes from the people in the team.”

Growing together

In addition to strengthening its digital platform, FARFETCH also uses the Optimizely platform to inform future growth areas. For example, the Stats Accelerator from Optimizely (an advanced multi-arm bandit algorithm), has enabled FARFETCH to test multiple, time sensitive, content changes and optimize towards performance in a short period of time. The partnership with Optimizely means FARFETCH can continue evolving its experimentation program to inform its product roadmap, and deliver personalized experiences worthy of its luxury brand partners.