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Part of setting up a test is deciding when to shut it down – when do we consider our test done?

The 2 biggest drivers are usually numbers and time:

  • We may decide that we need 100 participants, so we run the test until we get that number. Note that this might take 3 days or 3 weeks. Some tools let us automatically close the study when we hit a specified total.

  • We may only have a limited time to get our results – say, a week. Some tools let us set a date when the study will automatically close, and we have to be satisfied by whatever numbers we get.

In our studies, we prefer to close the test manually. While we always have a good idea of the numbers we want, and the time we can spend on this round of testing, we also like to have some wiggle room. Perhaps we got more responses than we expected, so we can close the test early and get started on the analysis. Or (more often) we get fewer responses than we hoped, so we might want to run the study for an extra week. Manual control lets us decide based on how the test is going.

Once the test is closed, there are a few more things to do – see Closing the test in Chapter 11.


Next: Redirecting after the test


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