A Conversion Rate Optimization (CRO) audit is a comprehensive analysis of your website’s performance to identify areas for improvement that can lead to higher conversion rates.

A CRO audit provides actionable insights to enhance your website’s effectiveness. Businesses need CRO audits to maximize ROI, increase customer satisfaction, and stay competitive in the digital landscape.

If you want a higher return on your hard-earned traffic, you need to get a higher number of visitors to take the actions that you desire.

Pretty obvious, I know.

But boosting your conversion rates isn’t about just split-testing pages.

Not about tweaking your button color, or moving your opt-in box above the fold. Conversion optimization audit (CRO) is about…

  • Finding out why visitors aren’t converting
  • Fixing your site – or site elements – to make them convert
  • Nothing else

Key Takeaways

  • Purpose: CRO audits identify areas to improve website conversion rates through detailed performance analysis.
  • Customization: Tailored strategies from CRO audits cater to specific audience needs, enhancing effectiveness.
  • User Insights: Audits provide insights into user interactions, preferences, and pain points.
  • Data-Driven Decisions: CRO audits offer concrete data, reducing guesswork and enabling informed decision-making.
  • Continuous Improvement: Regular CRO audits help businesses stay competitive and adapt to user behavior changes.
  • Professional Guidance: While DIY audits are possible, professional audits offer deeper insights and efficiency.
  • Implementation Structure: The article outlines a structured approach for implementing audit findings effectively.

Why Your Website Needs A CRO Audit

Most attempts at increasing conversions fail because people try to cut and paste conversion practices from other websites.

As shown in a previous article on the blog, unless the “best practices” are tested in a context that’s relevant to your audience, it’s worthless.

If you’re gambling for greater conversions without a strategic approach, it will never lead to positive results. The solution? A CRO Audit.

In fact, without a conversion rate optimization audit, you don’t stand a chance.

“CRO is finding out why visitors don’t become customers and fixing it.”

It’s like a doctor operating on a patient without knowing the problem – so he resorts to using random tools. That’s a recipe for disaster, don’t you think?

Here Are Some Key Reasons You Need A CRO Audit

  • Identify Bottlenecks: A CRO audit helps pinpoint where users drop off in the conversion funnel, allowing you to address specific issues.
  • Understand User Behavior: Gain insights into how visitors interact with your site, which pages hold their attention, and which cause them to leave.
  • Tailor Strategies to Your Audience: Generic strategies don’t work for everyone. A CRO audit ensures that the optimization techniques you implement are tailored to your specific audience’s needs and preferences.
  • Increase ROI: By optimizing your site for conversions, you make better use of your existing traffic, leading to a higher return on investment without needing to increase ad spend.
  • Competitive Edge: Stay ahead of competitors by continuously improving your website based on real data and user feedback.
  • Improve User Experience: A smoother, more intuitive user experience not only boosts conversions but also enhances overall customer satisfaction and loyalty.
  • Data-Driven Decisions: Remove the guesswork from your optimization efforts. A CRO audit provides concrete data to inform your decisions, leading to more effective outcomes.

In this article, you’ll get the clear and complete structure of a conversion rate optimization audit, along with helpful tutorials and tips to help you achieve your conversion goals.

If you’d like to benefit from a CRO audit done by our team, you can book it here.

Conversion Rate Optimization Audit – Structure and Tips

Conducting a comprehensive CRO audit involves a systematic approach to analyzing and improving your website’s performance. I’ll provide a step-by-step guide on how to effectively conduct a CRO audit. Follow these actionable tips to ensure your audit is thorough and yields meaningful insights.

1. Business Goals

Before you start your audit, get clear on what you want from it. Defining your business goals is the foundation of a successful CRO audit.

For example, let’s say you’re an eCommerce store that sells health products. Email marketing gives you the best ROI and sales. In this case, more subscribers equals more sales and profit.

Your main conversion goal can be to increase the number of visitors who subscribe to your list. From here, you can start analyzing and testing your current pop-up boxes, opt-in forms, and opt-in incentives to find what drives the most sign-ups.

Setting up conversions in GA4 will help you in this phase. Conversions can be applied to

  • Certain pages or screens users visit
  • How many pages/screens they view in a session
  • How long they stay on your site
  • The events they trigger while on-site.

To set up your events in GA4, follow these steps

  1. Navigate to your Google Tag Manager account.
  2. Create a New Tag. Click on “Tags” in the left-hand menu. Click on “New” to create a new tag. Name your tag something descriptive like “Event name: sign_up”.
  3. Click on “Tag Configuration” and select “Google Analytics: GA4 Event”. Select your GA4 Configuration tag from the “Configuration Tag” dropdown. If you haven’t set up a configuration tag yet, you’ll need to do that first by selecting “Google Analytics: GA4 Configuration”.
  4. In the “Event Name” field, enter the name of the event you want to track (e.g., “sign_up”, “purchase”).
  5. Add any additional event parameters you want to track. For instance, you can add parameters like event_category, event_action, and event_label to provide more context about the event.
  6. Create a Trigger. Click on “Triggering” and select the trigger that will fire the event. For example, if you want to track form submissions, select “Form Submission” as the trigger. If no suitable trigger exists, click “New” to create one and define the conditions under which the event should be triggered.
  7. Save and Publish the Tag.

2. User experience (UX) Audits

Split graphic comparing UI/UX and CRO; left side shows UI/UX elements like interface designs, right side depicts CRO with graphs and money symbols.

“User experience matters a lot. More than most people realize. The best-designed user experiences get out of the way and just help people get sh*t done.
 Less is more. If you have to explain it, you’ve already failed.” – Jason Goldberg, founder and CEO of Fab.com.

UX describes the total experience that your website created for the users. This transcends mere design and includes how intuitive your site is to use, how fast your site is, how your site feels when used, and how much friction is encountered.

A site may look beautiful, but if users feel it loads too slowly or that the information is unclear, then the UX is bad.

Peter Morville created the user experience honeycomb to describe the most important pieces of the UX puzzle

Honeycomb diagram with seven hexagons, each labeled with a quality of user experience: useful, usable, desirable, valuable, findable, accessible, credible.
  • Useful: How useful is your website? What goal does it help users to achieve? The more use it provides to visitors, the better the user experience. For instance, an eCommerce site that offers a detailed size guide helps users make informed decisions.
  • Usable: If going from one page to the next feels unnatural or confusing, you’ve got a problem. Ensure that your site’s layout and navigation are intuitive. A clear, easy-to-use menu structure is crucial for usability.
  • Desirable: Yes, the design must be practical, easy to use, and efficient. But that shouldn’t lead to creating a dull website that fails to appreciate the power of images, brand image, identity, and emotional design elements.
  • Findable: Users should easily find what they need/or want to do next. If they think about how to find it/do it, you’ve lost a visitor.
  • Accessible: Just as buildings have elevators and ramps, websites should be accessible to people with disabilities. Ensure your site meets accessibility standards by providing alternative text for images, using proper heading structures, and enabling keyboard navigation.
  • Credible: Before thinking of converting a visitor, they have to believe in your credibility. Display trust signals such as customer testimonials, security badges, and clear privacy policies to build trust with your audience.
  • Valuable: Your site must add to the bottom line and leave customers satisfied. This involves not only meeting their needs but also exceeding their expectations. Regularly update your content and features to provide ongoing value.

When conducting your UX audit, the honeycomb will serve as a useful checklist to guide your testing.

3. Analytics Audit

Screenshot of a digital marketing analytics dashboard showing line and bar graphs for conversion events by channel, along with a detailed data table of ad costs, revenue, and return on ad spend.

Garbage in, garbage out…right?

If your website analytics isn’t accurate, your results will be corrupted beyond recognition. And you’d have wasted months and months accumulating crap data, for nothing.

That’s where auditing your analytics comes in.

Auditing your data ensures that your results are accurate, and helps save a ton of time down the line.

To start off, let’s look at conducting a GA4 health check. It is designed to answer the following:

  1. Are you collecting enough data?
  2. Is the data you’re collecting credible?
  3. Are there any technical difficulties that need to be addressed?

Common GA4 Tracking Issues and Fixes

I. Missing Reports

Missing reports in GA4 can hinder comprehensive insights about your website or app. For instance, an e-commerce business might fail to track the “purchase” event, leading to lost revenue opportunities and poor decision-making.


  1. Review and verify that all critical events are correctly configured in GA4.
  2. Use tools like the GA Debugger Chrome extension to identify and resolve tracking issues.
  3. Use the real-time reporting feature in GA4 to verify that events are being recorded as expected.

II. Not Generating Revenue

Missing or incorrect currency values can impact revenue reporting in GA4. Misconfigurations may cause the default currency setting not to reflect correctly in e-commerce reports.


  1. Ensure your currency settings are correctly configured in the Data Stream settings.
  2. Implement custom event tracking for e-commerce transactions to bridge the gap between events and revenue.

III. Not Showing Conversions

GA4 may not show all conversions due to implementation errors, misconfigurations, or sampling limitations. Essential events might not be explicitly marked as conversions.


  1. Ensure events like ’email click,’ ‘form submission,’ and ‘phone click’ are marked as conversions.
  2. Regularly audit your GA4 tracking code implementation on all relevant pages.

Don’t drown your conversions and ruin your CRO audit with bad data. For accurate data:

  • Create or Use a GA4 Health Checklist: Regularly review your setup using a checklist to ensure all configurations are correct.
  • Review Property and Data Stream Settings: Go through your Property and Data Stream settings and address common issues.
  • Annual Reviews: Be sure to review your checklist annually to maintain the accuracy of your data.

4. Qualitative Research

Graphic of a central red hub labeled 'Insights' connected to six black nodes representing different research methods: Heuristic Analysis, Mouse Tracking Analysis, Web Analytics Analysis, Technical Analysis, Qualitative Surveys, and User Testing.

Quantitative research – like analytics – uses numbers, statistics, measurements, and comparisons to find out what’s happening. Qualitative research – like observing users in a usability study – uses observation and inquiry to dig out the answer to one question:


Qualitative research is

  • Who your customers are
  • What your customers want
  • The language your customers use

Through qualitative research, you can skyrocket the ROI of all marketing activities.

It allows you to create better test hypotheses, accurate personas, and pivotal changes in your website, copy, landing pages, customer service, and value proposition because your actions are rooted in data that whispers the motivations of your customers.

There’s more than one way to collect qualitative data, but we’ve listed the best methods for conversion rate optimization audit below:


Illustration of three people using large digital devices for online surveys, with checkmarks and a large smartphone displaying a survey interface.

Surveys grant you a deeper look into who your customers are, what they want, and what language they use when talking about you. They are also more likely to result in a response; research shows over 24.8% of customers are willing to complete surveys.

When users answer your surveys, their response becomes the basis for your new hypothesis, which you can test.

Tests that are based on user feedback will usually outperform tests that are based on what you read in someone else’s case study.

Every website is different. To create your first survey, follow this step-by-step tutorial that shows you how to create a survey with Omniconvert.

User Testing

Split graphic depicting 'User Testing' with three users providing feedback on an app interface, and 'Usability Testing' showing a single user interacting with a laptop, each accompanied by relevant question captions.

Online-based usability tests allow researchers, designers, and marketers to understand why users perform certain actions. Users are prompted for feedback when browsing or after a particular action.

For example, when they decide to remove an item out of their basket, they’ll be asked what led them to that action.

The best thing about user testing is the fact that you can create endless scenarios.

You can have users visit from different traffic sources, select various product categories, or buy different items. This, in turn, gives you a view of usability problems from a visitor’s perspective.

And if you’re worried about a specific page or element, you can always direct a constant stream of testers towards a page to analyze their behavior.


Screenshot of a Microsoft Clarity dashboard displaying a heatmap analysis for a webpage, highlighting areas of highest user interaction, with tools for analyzing clicks, scrolls, and user engagement visualized in vibrant colors.

Research and analytics are instrumental for improving conversions. Trying to boost conversions without them is like trying to go on a trip without a guide: you’ll still see the same things, but without any context or clues to let you know why they matter.

Heatmaps can track the movement of a mouse across your web page, they can reflect where your visitors have clicked, or they can reflect how far a user has scrolled down a page. There are a few other ways heat maps can work, and there are different schools of thought on which ways are the most accurate.

Essentially, every type of heat map is trying to reflect where your visitor’s attention is on the page. Unlike GA4, heatmaps can show:

  • Whether or not people are scrolling all the way down and consuming your content
  • The exact links, words, or buttons people click on a given page
  • The most popular portions of your web page

This makes them powerful tools for fixing hard-to-spot pain points, reducing friction, and boosting usability.

In addition to heatmaps, there are also other methods and tools you can use to analyze your site visitors’ behavior. By adding a custom short URL that collects detailed analytics to the buttons on your website, you can specifically track how people interact with them and use this data to help you optimize their conversion paths.

See our extensive guide on qualitative research for CRO for more information.

5. Data Collection

Graphic illustration of data collection process showing two people, one male and one female, placing documents into a large file folder, with a large funnel overhead channeling various data symbols like charts and gears into the folder.

Now’s the time to collect and organize our data into a comprehensive document.

To collect your GA4 data and add it to a Google Sheet, I recommend using Supermetrics. Once you’ve installed it, you can follow this guide to get started.

Here’s a template we use to get the most relevant data. It looks like a lot of sheets but once you understand what each dataset is for, this template will become a very powerful tool in your arsenal.

I’ll show you what each of these sheets means. We have the following

  • Dashboard: This is the experiment prioritization part of the template, which we’ll explore at the end of this guide.
  • Funnel: A bird’s eye view of your top segments. This is your “ideal” funnel that you’d like the user to go through.
  • Where: List of your most important pages. This is helpful when running experiments (especially popups or surveys) that you don’t want to display on your entire website, but only on specific page types.
  • To whom: How many users you have based on their type (new or returning), device, location, and medium?

The template is pretty straightforward and you’ll get what data you need to collect from your GA4 account just by looking at it.

Keep in mind that this template is 100% customizable, and we recommend you customize it to fit your needs. It is designed mostly for eCommerce websites in mind, but you can adapt it to fit your needs as a Publisher, SaaS, or any other type of business.

6. Moving From Data To Hypothesis

Two-part diagram: (a) shows a circular flow of arrows labeled from data to information, to knowledge, to wisdom; (b) illustrates a circular flow between 'data' and 'hypothesis' with arrows colored in a gradient from purple (night) to yellow (day), symbolizing the cycle of scientific inquiry.

After mining data, you’re going to start spotting patterns and trends. You’ll see where users encounter friction. But what’s next?

You can’t just magically wave your mouse over your screen and expect higher conversions (if only it were that easy!). But, you can turn that data into tangible results by forming a hypothesis to test.

Now, a hypothesis can be defined as:

A statement is based on limited evidence that can be proved or disproved and is used as a starting point for further investigation.

Every single test that gets results is based on a good hypothesis that’s part of an A/B testing plan. Sometimes a test wins or loses. Regardless of the outcome, you still get to learn based on your hypothesis. This will lead to stronger hypotheses and better results.

Steps to Develop Strong Hypotheses

  1. Spot Patterns and Trends: Use the collected data to identify user behavior patterns and pinpoint areas where users experience friction.
  2. Identify Problems: For example, “It’s not clear what the product does for people. And they aren’t going to buy what doesn’t benefit them.”
  3. Propose Solutions: Suggest actionable changes. For example, “Let’s rewrite product copy to clarify benefits, use better product images, and add social proof.”
  4. Formulate Hypothesis: Combine the problem and solution into a testable statement. For example: “By clarifying the benefits of the product, improving the overall presentation, and adding social proof, people will relate to our product and understand it better. This will drive more purchases.”

The better your hypothesis, the higher the chances the suggested treatment will lift conversions. With a hypothesis, the goal is to pair identified problems with solutions that surface the desired outcome.

Warning: Never test without a hypothesis. You can’t expect to learn how to get better results and stronger tests without forming hypotheses.

Check the case study of AliveCor, which managed to increase its Conversion Rate by 33% across pages by generating more than 200 test ideas.

7. Prioritization & Timeline

Editable business priorities timeline diagram featuring seven interconnected circles labeled 'Priority 1' through 'Priority 7', each circle in different shades of red, orange, and green, aligned horizontally with editable text boxes for descriptions.

Now that you identified enough problems and proposed solutions to increase your website’s conversion rate, it’s time to prioritize them based on their impact, cost, and ease of implementation, among other factors.

In this step, we recommend the CRO Audit & Prioritization Template by Omniconvert:

Just sort the experiments based on the “Potential” metric.

8. Putting Together a Proposal

Note: Some of you reading this might be interested in optimizing your site and you don’t need anyone’s approval. This is not for you. This is only for conversion optimization audits.

Specialists and agencies offering CRO services for their clients. They say it’s all about presentation, and it’s true to a large extent.

Getting your experiment ideas approved doesn’t always happen right away, some of your ideas might get turned down or your client might request some changes to your experiment design. This is where the power of presentation comes into play. A well-crafted proposal can make a significant difference in getting your ideas across effectively.

If you only communicate your ideas through text, there’s also room to make them more appealing by communicating them visually. Visual presentations can make complex ideas easier to understand and more engaging.

We put together a Google Slides Template that you can use with your own clients:

Using a professional template like this not only makes your proposal more visual and interesting, but it also shows your client that you put in extra work to communicate your ideas well with them.

Keep in mind organization politics and hierarchy, some clients might approve your experiments upfront while others, especially larger, international companies might need to get approval from their manager or supervisor.

9. Learning & Further A/B testing proposals

Illustration of the concept of A/B Testing

Tests are just data-collection at the end of the day. There’s no win or fail, the only question you should ask is “Is my hypothesis right or wrong?”

If you think about it, CRO audit is about being more data-driven. Data-driven is about not basing important decisions on your gut feeling. By disproving a hypothesis, you are doing yourself (or your client) a favor by not implementing a change that would hurt your conversion rate.

Here are some key important points of why you should learn from tests:  

  • Data-Driven Decisions: Basing decisions on data ensures more accurate and effective results. Each test provides valuable insights, regardless of the outcome.
  • Hypothesis Validation: Validating or disproving hypotheses refines your understanding of user behavior, leading to stronger future hypotheses and better optimization strategies.
  • Continuous Improvement: Learning from each test iteration helps in continually improving the CRO process, making it more efficient and effective over time.

By focusing on continuous learning and iterative testing, you can ensure that your CRO efforts are data-driven and consistently yield better results.

CRO Audit Checklist

Screenshot of a spreadsheet containing a website optimization checklist. Columns include 'Sections', 'Evaluation', 'Impact', 'Cost', 'Priority', 'Task', and 'Notes', with rows detailing various website features and actions needed, color-coded to indicate task type and priority.

Use this comprehensive checklist to ensure you cover all essential aspects of your Conversion Rate Optimization (CRO) audit.

1. Business Goals

  • Define primary conversion goals
  • Identify key performance indicators (KPIs)

2. User Experience (UX) Audits

  • Evaluate website usability
  • Use Peter Morville’s UX Honeycomb: Useful, Usable, Desirable, Findable, Accessible, Credible, Valuable
  • Conduct user testing and collect feedback

3. Analytics Audit

  • Conduct a GA4 health check
  • Ensure accurate event tracking and data integrity
  • Use debugging tools and real-time monitoring

4. Qualitative Research

  • Implement heatmaps to track user interactions
  • Use session recordings to analyze user behavior
  • Collect data on scrolling, clicks, and navigation paths

5. Data Collection

  • Gather data using GA4 and tools like Supermetrics
  • Use a structured template for organizing data
  • Segment audience by demographics and behavior

6. Hypothesis

  • Identify patterns and trends from collected data
  • Formulate testable hypotheses based on identified problems
  • Develop an A/B testing plan

7. Prioritization & Timeline

  • Prioritize experiments based on impact, cost, and ease of implementation
  • Use a prioritization template to rank experiments
  • Create a detailed implementation timeline

8. Proposal

  • Use visual presentations for client proposals
  • Highlight key issues, proposed solutions, and impact analysis
  • Tailor proposals to client needs and approval processes
  • Further A/B Testing Proposals
  • Analyze test results to validate hypotheses
  • Use insights to refine future hypotheses
  • Propose further A/B tests based on the findings

Frequently asked questions about CRO audit

When should I do a CRO audit?

You should conduct a CRO audit when you notice a decline or stagnation in conversion rates, before launching a new marketing campaign or redesign, after significant changes to your website, or periodically (e.g., quarterly) to ensure continuous optimization. 

This helps identify areas for improvement, validate hypotheses, and implement data-driven strategies to enhance user experience and increase conversions.

How long does a CRO audit usually take?

The duration of a typical CRO audit can vary depending on the complexity and size of your website, but generally, it takes between two to six weeks. This period includes the time needed to gather and analyze data, conduct user research, perform technical audits, and compile findings into a comprehensive report. 

The thoroughness of the audit, the number of pages involved, and the specific goals of the audit also influence the overall timeframe. Engaging multiple stakeholders and iterative reviews can extend the process, ensuring detailed and actionable insights for optimization.

Can I perform a CRO audit myself, or should I hire a professional?

Yes, you can perform a CRO audit yourself if you have a good understanding of analytics, user experience, and testing methodologies. There are numerous tools and resources available to guide you through the process. 

However, hiring a professional can be beneficial if you lack the expertise or time, as they bring specialized knowledge, experience, and an objective perspective, which can lead to more accurate insights and effective optimization strategies. Ultimately, the decision depends on your confidence, resources, and the complexity of your website.