Targeting your A/B test (adding users and target "stickiness")

The segment and targeting options for an A/B test are identical to those in a message or campaign, but there are some important things to note about targets for A/B tests specifically — read on for more information.

Also, see Creating targets for more details on targets in general.

Keeping your test "sticky"

By default, when you select a target for your A/B test, the test will be "sticky." This option (the magnet button) appears to the right of the targets you select. When the magnet button is selected, the background will be blue, like so:

A sticky test means that a user will remain in a test once they enter it, even if they eventually fall out of the test's target group. The magnet defaults to "on" because most tests require users to remain in the group they are assigned to.

For example, consider a test that is targeting users in the US. A user launches the app in the US and is placed into the test. Then, they fly to Europe and open the app again. If the magnet is selected, the user would stay in the test, even though they no longer fit the target criteria. If the magnet is unselected, they will be removed from the test once their location changes to Europe.

Note on turning off stickiness: With stickiness off, users are taken out of your test when they no longer fit the test's target audience. This means users will stop seeing their test experience if they don’t fit your test’s target audience anymore.

If a user re-enters the test's target audience, they can re-enter the A/B test, but the user will be sorted into one of your test groups randomly, as if they were a new user entering the test. See Stickiness and targets for more on the magnet button setting.

A/B test directly from a message or interface

If you start a new A/B test directly from the message setup page, the targets defined in the message will be copied over to the test as well. If the message campaign and the A/B test have exactly the same targets, then only users within the A/B test will be served that message.

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If the targets do not match identically, users outside of the test may also receive the message (if they meet the target criteria for the message but not the test).

Adding specific users to tests

There may be times when you want to add a specific user to one of your A/B tests, even if that user doesn't fall into your target audience. 

In the Users tab, you can force a user into the control or variant of an A/B test. Click the ID of the user you want in your test, then scroll to the bottom of their user info. You should be able to see all active A/B tests with options for each control and variant group.

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Clicking the circle under the variant or control group will force a user into that particular test group, even if the user does not belong to the target for the A/B test. A check mark will appear in the circle you select for that user. This feature is mainly used for testing purposes—so you can put yourself in a variant and experience what the A/B test is like in the application, even if you don't match the specified target.

Note: If a user is forced into a campaign or test, they will not exit automatically when they don't meet the target criteria. The user must be forced out of the campaign (by unchecking the same circle for the variant in the Users tab). Once forced out, the user will exit the campaign on their next session start.


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