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Why We’re Shutting Down the Free RebelMouse Product

I wanted to take a moment personally as founder and CEO to explain our decision in shutting down our free product at RebelMouse. Those who understand us well know that RebelMouse is a company obsessed with distribution.

Before I started RebelMouse, I was the CTO for Huffington Post where we created a platform that gave editors and writers at HuffPost an advantage over their peers. Our goal at RebelMouse from the start was to build the next generation platform that could be used by any company to not only publish, but to understand distribution and audience with every story.


Our free product was the first version of working with social APIs at scale to be able to analyze and understand content and its importance, and to begin building the links that would make a website social. It's launch went viral. Over 9 million profiles have been created that have become people's bios, social walls, and campaign pages.

But these pages rarely went viral of themselves. Our mission has always been to help the users of our software spread, go viral or reach the small but perfect audience they were seeking.

So, we dug deeper, focusing on our cultural obsession with distribution.

We built Rebel Roar, our full blown DCMS (Distributed CMS for building cross-platform properties) and now proudly reach hundreds of millions on social and serve 90 million plus PVs on the social websites that link these properties. The Dodo, built on our platform was recently the 5th largest publisher on Facebook.

We work very closely with a very small group of partner/clients to build incredible experiences and be early movers on new products from the social network giants. There are very few teams in the world that have our track record for putting up the biggest properties in the world, and we will never stop putting more up there. Rebel Roar will forever be a part of RebelMouse as a small group of elite clients who understand content at the highest level - like The Dodo, whose team is brilliant.

We saw an opportunity to take what we've learned from Rebel Roar and provide a low cost, scalable version that could be deployed on-the-fly. That is Rebel Runner, which is now launched with a small group of awesome companies, but soon will be released so you can sign up for it and launch a new site with a few clicks. Ads management integrated, distribution/virality tools integrated, data at every layer, and simple for you to launch. Runners pull content in from anything - hashtags, social accounts, RSS, WordPress imports, etc. And Runners push content out to everywhere - Facebook Instant articles, emails, apps, Google News, Apple News, JSON, RSS, APIs.

As fancy, awesome and tricked out as our DCMS is, we saw an opportunity to provide the kernel of our social distribution tools as a product that could snap into any website. This is the product we call Rebel Discovery, which can be deployed into any existing site and works for anyone who wants their content to reach its maximum audience and has a Facebook page.

There is a passion at RebelMouse for helping companies and creators through a time of massive change. Everything has changed in media, content, marketing, and advertising -- and it changed overnight.

RebelMouse is going to be here through the decades of change ahead, a partner like Switzerland between the social media giants and wars, that is on your side to help you punch above your weight.

For those of our early users of the free product, we have special grandfather pricing to make it possible for those of you do have small budgets and companies to continue with us. We promise to over deliver on the value.

I thank you personally for having used the software that we built, and I hope very much to find ways to work on projects with no budgets but are just acts of creation like the ones we saw flourish on the platform. We're going to do that when you can bloom a distributed property with no budget, so that if or when free comes back to RebelMouse, you will be able to see the more real and full capacity we have been building.

Please join us in the real journey RebelMouse is on. Please talk to us about this as well, email us at free@rebelmouse.com


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Multivariate Testing: An Introduction to Data-Driven Site Design
Rebel Insights

Multivariate Testing: An Introduction to Data-Driven Site Design

Understand the differences between multivariate testing and A/B tests

The modern digital landscape is founded on one critical element — data. From content creation to site design, there’s no reason to take chances on what will resonate with your audiences. Adopting a data-driven mindset means you can take the guesswork out of your business strategy and focus on the methods that are actually moving the needle.

And one of the best ways to figure out what strategies are moving the needle for your website is through multivariate testing.

What Is Multivariate Testing?

Multivariate testing is the process of testing one or more components on a website in a live environment. These components can be anything from a CTA button, headline formatting, or even an entire page design. The beauty of multivariate testing is that you can test each one of these individual features on a page to see what performs well among your users.

Think about it for a moment. Creative teams with great ideas are most successful when they have an environment where ideas can easily be tested against each other instead of trying to find total agreement on one idea. Multivariate testing allows teams to cherry-pick each idea to create an end result that works best, backed by the data to prove it.

multivariate testing allows for various layout designs and element placements to be tested live to see what attracts the most readershipSee which elements and layout designs attract the most readers with multivariate testing. Graphic from Invesp.

Multivariate Testing vs. A/B Tests

Traditional A/B testing is the process of creating two different layouts and splitting the traffic between the two to see which one performs better. It’s possible to test more than just two layouts, of course, and there’s no issue with creating A/B/C/D/etc. tests depending on how many layouts you have to try.

A/B tests can produce great results, but they are limited since they test an entire layout at once. Remember, multivariate testing allows you to test the different components of a layout individually. Think of multivariate testing as running multiple A/B tests at one time. Here’s a good illustration of the differences between A/B testing and multivariate testing from HubSpot:

A/B testing compares two layouts as a single page, while multivariate testing allows for multiple elements to be tested simultaneouslyAn illustration of the more complex testing available through multivariate testing. From HubSpot.

Multivariate testing is a great way to help creative environments stay focused. However, it’s vital that all ideas get measured, because one idea might sound awesome to the group or a team member, but it may not always perform.

How Do I Know When to Use Multivariate Testing?

If you are looking for fast results, it’s best to use A/B testing. However, multivariate testing is the preferred choice if you have the time to analyze and review multiple data points. Combined, the testing on each one of your site elements will help you curate the highest-performing page possible. It’s also recommended that you use multivariate testing on your pages with the highest traffic because there will be more data to analyze to determine which site elements are garnering the most engagement.

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Google Made Major Changes to Its Formula for Page Speed. Here’s What to Do About It in 2022.
Rebel Insights

Google Made Major Changes to Its Formula for Page Speed. Here’s What to Do About It in 2022.

Make sure your site is set up for success in 2022.

In the spring of 2020, Google let the world know that its Core Web Vitals would become the new benchmark for measuring a site's performance in its search results, known as the page experience update. Fast forward to more than a year later in August 2021 when, after much anticipation, Google's page experience update became official.

Since its rollout, developers have felt the impact of how their publishing platforms stack up against the new standard. Important decisions around the architecture of your site can now make or break your site's performance in the eyes of Google.

HTTP Archive, a tracking platform that crawls the web to identify trends and record historical patterns, frequently reports on how top content management systems (CMS) have weathered the page experience update through the creation of its Core Web Vitals Technology Report. RebelMouse has consistently outperformed major CMS platforms on Google's most critical metrics throughout the year:

Getting superior scores on Google's performance benchmarks isn't easy, either. The Ahrefs blog analyzed Core Web Vitals data from the Chrome User Experience Report (CrUX), which is data from actual Chrome users, to see how the web stacks up against Core Web Vitals. Their study found that only 33% of sites on the web are passing Core Web Vitals.

data from Ahrefs tracked on a line chart finds that shows only 33% of sites on the web pass Google's Core Web VitalsFrom Ahrefs.

Luckily, performing well on Core Web Vitals is possible with thoughtful, strategic changes to your site’s codebase. Here's what you need to know and how we can help.

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