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CRO Test Essentials: A Practical Guide

CRO Test Essentials: A Practical Guide
Elena Mitsiou
•  02.11.2023
With online digital platforms being the alpha and the omega for the success of a product, conversion rate optimization testing is a quintessential practice for UX professionals and marketers alike. Keep reading to learn how a CRO test can help you unlock the full potential of your website or app.

From making a purchase to filling out a form or downloading an asset, users are nowadays asked to take action while navigating a website or an app. The success of a digital product is linked to the number of users that will ‘convert’ and this is where the importance of conducting a CRO test lies.

CRO testing is the process of testing out different variables that can increase the percentage of users who take a desired action. In this article, we have collated everything you need to know about the different types of CRO tests as well as a handy guide on how to execute a successful CRO test without a hitch.

Types of CRO Tests 

cro test

There are a host of different types of CRO tests that you can deploy for your conversion rate optimization efforts. Choosing the one that will better serve you, highly depends on the unique nature of your project. Often a combination of these tools might help you get a holistic view of how to unleash the potential of your digital platform. 

A/B Testing

A/B testing is the king of CRO tests. This method involves the design of two versions of a web page or screen that have a specific variation. A/B testing allows you to split the traffic on the page that you are testing so that different groups of users can see the different versions of the design.

This gives the UX professional or marketer a unique opportunity to analyze which variation has a significant positive effect on the conversion rate. A/B testing works wonders when it comes to testing CTA buttons as you can see the impact that the microcopy or the location of the button can have on the conversion rate.

Multivariate Testing

Multivariate testing is another great CRO test that can be deployed to understand how different variations of the same design can have an impact on the conversion rate of a particular element.

Multivariate testing is very similar to A/B testing with the only difference being that this type of test gives the UX professional the opportunity to examine multiple variations simultaneously and better understand how a combination of changes may have an effect on user interaction.

The end goal here is to find the combination that maximizes conversions!

Split URL Testing

Split URL testing is a CRO test that involves using two completely different landing pages or screens to understand which layout performs better. This is a drastic method to test drastic changes!

For example, split URL testing can come in super handy during a redesign or a content strategy overhaul as you can use it to test different copies and layouts. In smaller-scale projects, it can be particularly helpful when comparing the performance of landing pages! 

Five Second Tests

Another useful CRO test to have in your arsenal is the five-second test, which specifically focuses on understanding the user’s initial reactions and first impressions from a digital design. During the 5-second testing, users are shown an interface very briefly and then they get asked questions about their initial impressions.

Five second testing questions are all focused on understanding what parts of the design participants recall most vividly and how the design makes them feel about the product.

Online five second tests are usually conducted with the help of a five second test tool like UXtweak. Using this method, you can check if your design conveys the intended message at a glance which will lead to better conversion rates overall. 

💡Pro Tip

Learn how to conduct this test in our Complete Guide to Five Second Testing.

First Click Test

Finally, another great variation of the five-second test is the first click test which works in a similar way but it helps you to specifically get insights about the first action that the user would intuitively perform on a website or app. This can be gold when you want to discover the user’s intentions and the reason why they are visiting a page or a screen and work to optimize it accordingly. 

You can conduct first click tests using UXtweak’s First Click Test tool.

See these tools in actions in our demos 👇

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Five Second Testing
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Try First Click Testing✅

First Click Testing
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The Intersection of UX and CRO

User experience and conversion rate optimization are two terms that are closely related. They both are data-driven, iterative processes having one shared goal; the improvement of the performance of a digital product! 

UX and CRO are essentially the two sides of the same coin. User experience focuses fundamentally on improving the performance of a website or app with the main goal of achieving a seamless and frictionless user interaction while conversion rate optimization focuses on the results that this has on the business.

Thus, UX is all about understanding and prioritizing user needs and making changes to accommodate those needs while with CRO testing you can assess how the various changes can impact the conversion rates.

This is exactly why UX is an integral part of conversion rate optimization. After all, it is no coincidence that research tools can be used to perform CRO tests. With UX and CRO being iterative processes, integrating a UX research tool is essential to gaming up your CRO testing efforts.

Tools for CRO Testing

cro test

If you are wondering what tools you can use to successfully perform a CRO test, look no further. We have collated our top 5 tools featuring a host of cool features to up your conversion rate optimization game:


Tools for CRO Testing

UXtweak is an all-in-one UX platform offering a range of powerful tools to help you optimize your conversion rates! From usability testing, session replay and heatmaps to tools to help you perform five-second testing, A/B testing and first-click testing, this versatile tool allows you to get a deep understanding of your users and use those insights to come up with a data-driven CRO testing strategy.

Optimize Your Conversions with UXtweak!

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2. Optimizely

Tools for CRO Testing

With the sunset of Google Optimize, Optimizely is another great experimentation tool to get into A/B testing or multivariant testing. This tool features an easy-to-use interface to set up and launch experiments.

3. Crazy Egg

Tools for CRO Testing

Crazy Egg is another popular tool that you can deploy when it comes to CRO testing. From event tracking to highly detailed heatmaps and scroll maps, this tool can provide juicy insights on areas that require improvement fueling in this way your CRO efforts!  

4. Hotjar

Tools for CRO Testing

Hotjar is another great tool to consider if you are looking to get juicy user insights through your CRO testing. This tool offers a wide range of different features from heatmaps to session recordings that will help you uncover valuable data on how different aspects of your website perform and get stuck into testing those!

5. Visual Website Optimizer

tools for CRO testing

Visual website optimizer is another comprehensive and robust tool specializing in A/B and multivariant testing which also features a split URL testing tool. This tool is a game changer as it also includes a code-free visual editor that allows you to perform experiments on the fly.

Step-by-Step Guide to Performing a CRO Test 

cro test

Performing a CRO test might feel daunting at first but fear not as we have created this step-by-step guide on how to successfully perform one. It is useful to bear in mind that conversion optimization is not a one-off project but rather an iterative process that involves continuous refinement:

1. Set clear objectives

Setting clear objectives can make or break the success of your CRO test. Before diving head first into your CRO testing, it is important to take a step back and clearly define the aims and desired outcomes.

To achieve this you can start asking yourself and the team the following questions: Are there any specific rates that you want to focus the optimization on? What are those areas of your page or screen that are underperforming? Is there a specific metric we want to focus on?

2. Choose the appropriate CRO Test

Once your objectives and desired outcomes are clearly outlined, it is time to choose the right CRO test based on the unique needs of your projects. As mentioned earlier in this article, there are a host of CRO tests out here including A/B testing, multivariate testing, and so on.

Remember that each method is suited to specific cases so make sure those are aligned with your objectives.

💡Pro Tip

For more complex projects, consider using a combination of CRO testing methods for greater outcomes!

3. Choose Your Tools

Next up is choosing the right tool or tools so that you can successfully implement your CRO testing strategy. Consider looking at comprehensive research platforms such as UXtweak that feature a range of different tools so that you can cover future CRO testing needs making the most out of your investment. 

Also when it comes to A/B testing, it is important to choose a tool with an easy-to-use editor to make sure you can create experiments on the spot without the need for full development!

4. Set Up the Test

Having chosen the right tool, you are now ready to crack on with your experiment. Depending on the nature of the test you might have to create different versions of a web page and direct users to these variations! No matter what the CRO test is make sure to set up your tracking properly and continuously monitor the data to draw conclusions on performance.

5. Analyze the Data

Once you have run the test it is time to gather and analyze your data. Make sure to take into consideration both qualitative and quantitative data. This combination will give you a holistic understanding of the user experience and how it can be optimized to result in higher conversion rates. Conversion rates and event completion are some of the key metrics to look out for here.

6. Implement Changes

Once you are satisfied with the analysis of the data you can go ahead and implement the changes on the live environment of your website or app! Do not forget to keep monitoring the performance to ensure that the changes have brought in the desired outcomes. If not, you can always iterate and optimize to continue the refinement until you are happy with the performance.

Common Mistakes to Avoid in CRO Testing

Here are some common mistakes to avoid when setting up and conducting your CRO test. And take it from us, steering clear from those can skyrocket the effectiveness of your CRO testing:

  • Testing too many variables simultaneously: Maybe the most common mistake to avoid is testing too many variables at the same time! Although it might seem efficient in terms of timelines, you will soon realize that this will dilute the results of your tests as it can make it difficult to pinpoint the variant or combination of variants that can make the difference in your CRO.
  • Not allocating enough time for your CRO test: Another grave error when it comes to CRO testing is not allocating the right time for the CRO test to run. Make sure to calculate the sample size and time needed to draw results and do not hurry to get conclusive results before those two parameters are met.
  • Overlooking the mobile experience: This is one to truly watch out for! With mobile users on the rise, overlooking the mobile user experience is a grave mistake. Ensure that your CRO test covers the mobile aspect as something that works well on a desktop might not necessarily perform well on a mobile!
  • Ignoring qualitative data: Not taking into consideration your qualitative data is another mistake to avoid. Relying exclusively on quantitative data can lead to misinterpretation of data as those do not provide any insights into the reasons why users behave a certain way.

Real-life examples of CRO testing


cro test examples


Amazon known to be one the world’s largest e-commerce platforms is also known for its rigorous CRO testing efforts! Running rigorous and continuous CRO tests, they have perfected the ‘add to cart’ art, creating a seamless user experience that encourages more purchases.


cro test examples


Netflix is another great real-life example that utilizes CRO tests to improve consumption and user engagement! The UXers here are running CRO tests focusing on how Netflix can provide better-personalized recommendations that are tailor-made to the user’s individual preferences.


cro test examples


Shopify is a leading robust e-commerce platform for online stores. Shopify’s CRO testing strategy revolves around the user onboarding process and they are often testing new innovative ways to gain more users including offering free trials. 

The gist of it 

Mastering the art of CRO testing is an absolute must for UX professionals and marketers alike. This data-driven approach allows for the improvement of user experience by revealing insights into how design choices can have a major influence on user behavior.

There are a host of different CRO tests out there as well as an abundance of tools that you can use to get started on your CRO testing strategy.

Our recommendation? If you are ready to embark on your CRO testing journey, check out UXtweak, the only platform you’ll ever need for successful CRO tests.

Optimize Your Conversions with UXtweak!

Pinpoint areas of improvement and fine-tune your UX for better conversions

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How to do a CRO analysis?

A good place to start when it comes to a CRO analysis is understanding the key performance indicators against which you will measure the success of your CRO test. Simply compare those with the outcomes of your CRO test and make informed decisions about the design of your digital product.

How to perform an A/B test?

To perform an A/B test simply create two versions of a page or screen which will contain one variable. Run the test and compare the effect that this one change has on the performance on the page.

What is a CRO test?

A CRO test is a methodology that allows for the improvement of the performance of a digital product by gaining insights into how a change in the copy or the design can have an effect on user behavior.

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