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GrowthBook Best Practices

Organization

As you scale up your usage of GrowthBook and start running many experiments, keeping everything organized and easy to find is essential. GrowthBook includes a number of organizational structures to help you scale.

Organizations

The organization is the highest level structure within GrowthBook. An organization contains everything within your GrowthBook instance: users, data sources, metrics, features, etc. For both cloud and self-hosted users, it is possible for users to join multiple organizations. Users can belong to multiple organizations, but each organization is otherwise entirely independent of the others. For some, complete isolation of the teams or subdivisions within the company may be desired. For example, if your company has two or more largely independent products (e.g., Google has Search and Google Docs), you can set up multiple organizations per product.

For self-hosted enterprise users, we support multi-organization mode, which also comes with a super-admin account type that can manage users across organizations.

Environments

In GrowthBook, you can create as many environments as you need for the feature flags and override rules. Environments are meant to separate how your feature flags and override rules are deployed. Each environment can have one or more SDK API endpoints specified when you create the SDK, allowing you to differentiate the override rules. For example, you might have environments for “Staging”, “QA”, and “Production”. While testing the feature, you can set specific rules to on the "development" or "QA" environment, and when you're ready, you can move applicable rules to the "production" environment.

You can add an arbitrary number of environments from the SDK Connections → Environments page.

Environments Page

Projects

Within an organization, you can create projects. Projects can help isolate the view of GrowthBook to just the sections that apply for that GrowthBook user. Projects are a great way to organizationally separate features, metrics, experiments, and even data sources by team or product feature. For example, you could have a project “front-end” and one for “back-end”, or by team like “Growth” and “API”. Unlike separate organizations, projects can share data. Projects are managed from the Settings → Projects page.

Projects Page

A use case for using projects is if you have divisions within your product but a centralized data source. We typically see projects used per team or per project within your organization. For example, if you have a mobile app and a website that shares users, but the code bases are different, you will want to create two projects: a mobile project and a web project.

Each of the items within GrowthBook can be assigned to multiple projects. You can have a data source that is part of the ‘mobile’ and ‘web’ projects but not to a ‘marketing’ project. That data source will not be available for users in the 'marketing' project.

To help keep feature payloads smaller, the SDK endpoint where the feature definitions are returned can be scoped to each project. If using Projects based on features or area of your product, you can use this feature to only return features that pertain to that area. For example, with our “mobile” and “website” example, you can add the project scope to only return features for the project as these are likely to use different code than the other, and you don’t want to expose features unnecessarily.

One advantage of using projects is that you can adjust permissions and even some statistical settings per project- users can have no access to a project or, inversely, have no general permissions but add a project permission so they can work within their project. If a team prefers to use a frequentist statistical model, this can be adjusted per project.

Tags

Another way to organize GrowthBook is with tags. With tags, you can quickly filter lists, and select metrics. For example, if you tagged all experiments to do with your checkout flow with the tag “checkout”, you can quickly see this in the list by clicking on ‘filter by tags’ on the experiment list. Tags can be color-coded and managed from our Settings → Tags page. You can add multiple tags per item you are tagging.

Tags Page

Metrics with tags can be used to quickly add all those metrics to an experiment. When creating an experiment or editing the metrics, there is a section titled “Select metric by tag” which will let you add all the metrics by the tag name to both guardrail and goal metrics. This is useful if you want to use a standard set of goal metrics or guardrail metrics for your experiments.

Tags are often used to mark sub-features of your product; for example, if you have an e-commerce website, you might want to tag features or experiments with the area they affect, like ‘pricing,’ ‘product page,’ or ‘checkout.’

Experiments filtered by tag

Naming

Another organizing principle you can use is the naming of your experiments and features. Because GrowthBook makes it easy to quickly search the list of features and flags, using naming conventions can be an effective way to organize your project.

We’ve seen several strategies be successful here, but as a general rule, you’ll want to be as specific as possible with naming features and experiments. For example, you can use <project scope>_<project name> or the year, quarter, or section plus the name of the experiment, e.g.: “23-Q4 New user registration modal“ or “23-Team3 Simplified checkout flow”. This lets you quickly see when the experiment was run or which team worked on it.

Hygiene & Archiving

As the number of features and experiments grows, you will want to remove past items that are no longer relevant. Within GrowthBook you can archive and delete. Deleting something will permanently remove items from GrowthBook. Archived items in GrowthBook won’t be deleted, but they are removed from the main part of the UI and not available for adding to new experiments (for archived metrics). Archived items can also be restored at any time. These methods help you keep your UI clean and relevant.

Source of Truth

If you run an experimentation program for a long enough time, you’ll find yourself with an experiment idea that seems really familiar, and people will wonder, “Didn’t we already test this?” If you don’t have a central repository for all your experiment results, it can be difficult to find if you did test this previously, and even if you did, if what you tested was similar enough to the new idea not to have to test it again.

GrowthBook is designed to help with this by creating a central source for the features you’ve launched and the experiments you’ve run. To help facilitate this, GrowthBook has created a number of features to help you capture meta information.

Meta Information

Features and experiments can all have metadata attached to them. The purpose of this is to help capture all the meta-information around a feature or experiment that might help contextualize it for posterity and help capture the institutional knowledge that your program generates. This is also very helpful when new members join your team, so they don’t just suggest ideas you’ve run many times already.

For experiments, you should capture the original idea, any screenshots of similar products, and, most importantly, capture images/screenshots of the control and variants for the experiment. Quite often, someone will suggest an idea you’ve run previously. In these cases, it is vital to be able to find out what exactly you tested previously - it's possible that the new idea is slightly different, or you may decide that it is the same and try testing another idea, or you could decide that your product is substantially different, and the same idea may be worth testing again. To make this decision, it is essential to capture not just the experiment results but the broader context of what your product looked like at the time and the test variants.

Getting your team to document is always a challenge. GrowthBook takes two approaches to help with this. The first is to make it super easy to add documentation directly in the platform you’re already using for the experiment. Secondly, we added launch checklists, which can require that certain files be filled before your team is able to start an experiment.

Searching

GrowthBook has a powerful search feature that allows you to quickly find the feature, experiment, or metrics. By default, text searches with this search input will search based on the name, description, and other meta information. You can also search using syntax search to search for specific fields.

Syntax search allows you to search for specific fields in GrowthBook. The syntax search allows for exact matching, starts with, greater, less, and contains. You can also negate any of the operators using !. Syntax searches are constructed in the format of [field]:[operator][value]. You can also combine multiple fields using the same syntax. For example, name:~pricing status:running will search for all running experiments with the name containing the string "pricing".

Syntax operatorDescription
:exact match
:=exact match
:~contains
:^starts with
:>greater than
:<less than
:!negated (exclude matches)
:!=negated (exclude matches)
:!~does not contain
:!^does not starts with
:!>not greater than
:!<not less than

You can also add quotes to search for fields that contain spaces. For example, name:"New Feature" will search for the name field that contains the text “New Feature”.

Experiments Syntax Fields

Syntax fieldDescription
nameThe experiment name (eg: name:~pricing)
key or idThe experiment's tracking key (eg: key:^banner)
statusExperiment status, can be one of "stopped", "running", "draft", "archived" (eg: status:running)
ownerThe creator of the experiment (eg: owner:pat)
tagExperiments tagged with this tag
projectThe experiment's project
featureThe experiment is linked to the specified feature
metricExperiments that contain the metric specified (eg: metric:~revenue)
resultThe experiment result (won, inconclusive, lost, unfinished)
variationThe experiment contains a variant with the name specified
variationsSearch for the number of variants
createdThe experiment's creation date, in UTC. The date entered is parsed so supports most formats
updatedThe date the experiment was updated, in UTC. The date entered is parsed so supports most formats
variationsSearch for the number of variants
issupports searching on the experiment status, results, and other current states. Supported fields

archivedIf the experiment is archived
draftThe experiment is in draft status
runningThe experiment is running
stoppedThe experiment is stopped
wonThe experiment been marked as won
lostThe experiment has been maked as lost
inconclusiveThe experiment has been marked as inconclusive
visualThe experiment has variants made with the visual editor
redirectThe experiment has a URL redirect experiment
hassupports searching on the experiment states. Supported fields

projectThe experiment belongs to at least one project
visualChangeThe experiment has a visual editor change
redirect/redirectsThe experiment has a URL redirect
feature/featuresThe experiment has features attached
hypothesisThe experiment has a hypothesis
descriptionThe experiment has a description
screenshotsThe experiment has at least one screenshot

Examples

name:~pricing status:running

Show all running experiments with the name containing the string "pricing"

tag:checkout result:won updated:>2024-06-05

Show all experiments tagged with "checkout" that have been marked as won and were updated after June 5th, 2024

is:archived has:visualChange variations:>2

Show all archived experiments that have a visual change and have more than 2 variations in the experiment

owner:patty has:!hypothesis

Show all experiments owned by Patty that do not have a hypothesis

created:<"dec 22nd, 2023" has:redirect metrics:~revenue

Show all experiments that have a redirect and were created before December 22nd, 2023 and contain a metric name containing "revenue"

Features Syntax Fields

Syntax fieldDescription
keyThe feature's key (name)
ownerThe creator of the feature (eg: owner:abby)
rulesMatches based on the number of rules (eg: rules:>2)
tagFeatures tagged with this tag
projectThe feature's project
version or revisionThe feature's revision number
experimentThe feature is linked to the specified experiment
createdThe feature's creation date, in UTC. Date entered is parsed so supports most formats.

(eg: created:>"2024-06-05" or created:<"dec 22nd, 2023")
updatedThe date the feature was updated, in UTC. Date entered is parsed so supports most formats
onShows features that are on for a specific environment (on:production)
offShows features that are off for a specific environment (off:dev)
issupports searching on the feature status, results, and other current states. Supported fields

archivedIf the feature is archived
draftThe feature is in draft status
staleThe feature is stale
hassupports searching on the feature states. Supported fields

projectThe feature belongs to at least one project
draft or draftsThe feature has a draft
prerequisites or prereqsThe feature has at least one prerequisite flags
validation or schema or jsonSchemaThe feature has a JSON schema attached
rule or rulesThe feature has at least one rule
experiment or experimentsThe feature has at least one experiment rule
rollout or percentThe feature has at least one precentage rollout rule
force or targetingThe feature has at least one force rule

Examples

key:~pricing on:production

Show all features with the key containing the string "pricing" that are on in the production environment

tag:checkout stale:true

Show all features tagged with "checkout" that are stale

is:archived has:prerequisites

Show all archived features that have prerequisites

owner:abby has:draft rules:0

Show all features owned by Abby that have a draft and have no rules

updated:>"2024-06-05" has:experiment

Show all features that have experiment rules and were updated after June 5th, 2024