What is CRO? How does this relate to UX?

If you are a marketer, you might have heard of CRO. But what is it? Conversion Rate Optimization, or CRO, is the practice of improving the performance of a website or landing page with the goal of increasing the number of visitors who take the desired action, such as subscribing to a newsletter, downloading a...

Last updated: 8 Dec 2022 - 7 mins read

Dylan Laseur Digital marketing


If you are a marketer, you might have heard of CRO. But what is it?

Conversion Rate Optimization, or CRO, is the practice of improving the performance of a website or landing page with the goal of increasing the number of visitors who take the desired action, such as subscribing to a newsletter, downloading a file, or making a purchase.

Sometimes people consider this CRO approach to UX to be the same, but it is actually a little different. We’ll discuss what CRO is and the relationship between CRO and UX.

What is CRO?

Conversion Rate Optimization, or CRO, is the practice of improving the performance of a website or landing page with the goal of increasing the number of visitors who take the desired action, such as subscribing to a newsletter, downloading a file, or making a purchase.

In short, CRO is activities that increase the conversion rate.

The essence of CRO is a user-centric approach. In some cases, you can increase your conversion rate by removing technical bugs on your website. However, this cannot be categorized as a CRO approach even if it resulted in an increased conversion rate. CRO is more like activities and improvements that make users take the desired action more smoothly.

How to calculate a conversion rate

Before exploring the specific CRO processes, let’s recap the concept of a conversion rate to understand CRO better.

The conversion rate is calculated by dividing the number of conversions by the total number of site visits.

If you set the number of clicks on your website as a conversion and have 60 clicks out of 300 site visitors, the conversion rate is 20%.

Is there any standard conversion rate?

There is no standard conversion rate because conversion rates can vary widely depending on a number of factors, including the type of website, the quality of the traffic, and the relevance of the offer to the target audience.

For example, a website that sells high-end luxury products may have a lower conversion rate than a website that sells everyday items, because the cost of the products and the perceived value to the customer can impact the likelihood of a purchase.

Additionally, the quality of the traffic can also impact conversion rates. If a website receives a lot of low-quality traffic, such as bot traffic or people who are not interested in the products or services being offered, the conversion rate will be lower. Finally, the relevance of the offer to the target audience can also impact conversion rates. If an offer is highly relevant to the target audience, it is more likely to be successful. Therefore, there is no standard conversion rate because conversion rates can vary depending on the unique factors and circumstances of each website.

You can refer to the average conversion rate below. However, as illustrated above, these numbers vary a lot depending on each business situation.

What should marketers do for CRO?

For conversion rate optimization, marketers should focus on making the user behaviour on their website as smooth and effective as possible. This can be achieved through a combination of design, copywriting, and data analysis. Some specific things that marketers can do for conversion rate optimization include:

Identifying the desired action:

The first step in conversion rate optimization is to identify the specific action that you want visitors to take on your website. This could be making a purchase, filling out a form, subscribing to a newsletter, or something else. Once you have identified the desired action, you can focus your efforts on improving the user experience and making it as easy as possible for visitors to take that action.

Various Conversions

Designing a user-friendly website:

The design of your website can have a big impact on conversion rates. A well-designed website will be easy to navigate, visually appealing, and intuitive to use. This can help to improve the user experience and make it more likely that visitors will take the desired action.

Writing compelling copy:

The text on your website, known as copy, is also an important factor in conversion rate optimization. Well-written copy can help to grab the attention of visitors, explain the value of your products or services, and persuade them to take the desired action.

A single sentence can change a conversion rate

Analyzing data:

Conversion rate optimization also involves analyzing data to understand how visitors are interacting with your website. This can help you identify any issues or areas for improvement, such as pages with high bounce rates or a low average time on the page. By analyzing data, you can identify what is and isn’t working on your website, and make changes to improve the user experience and increase conversion rates.

AB testing:

To determine the effectiveness of changes made during conversion rate optimization, marketers should test their hypotheses and research by implementing design, copy, and technical changes and measuring their impact on conversion rates, revenues, and customer retention. This can involve testing different design elements, such as colours, buttons, and navigation, as well as changes to the copy on the website. By putting these changes to the test, marketers can determine whether they are effective in helping customers achieve their goals and increasing conversion rates, revenues, and retention. (How to conduct A/B testing)

How does CRO relate to UX?

Conversion rate optimization(CRO) and user experience(UX) are related but distinct concepts.

Conversion rate optimization is the process of improving the performance of a website or landing page as described above. User experience, on the other hand, refers to the overall experience of a user when interacting with a website, product, or service. This encompasses factors such as the design of the website, the ease of use, and the relevance of the content to the user. User experience is an important factor in conversion rate optimization, as a positive user experience can make it more likely that visitors will take the desired action on a website.

Many people believe that the goal of user experience (UX) is to create an unforgettable experience for users, which can sometimes lead to the creation of overwhelming and fancy designs with many creative innovations. However, this can often result in a poor user experience, as these designs can be confusing and difficult to use. Instead, the aim of UX should be to create a user experience that is smooth, intuitive, and effective, allowing users to easily achieve their goals and have a positive experience on a website.

UX for CRO

While the concepts of UX and CRO are slightly different, the goal of UX and CRO should be the same: to maximize the number of loyal customers.

As you do your business to make a profit, all of your business activities should be connected to increasing sales. CRO aims to increase the conversion rate and UX is one of the methods to achieve that.

“Any UX professional should look into CRO to learn the basic “attention-driving” principles. These principles can be applied inside the application, too — to direct user focus.”

Jane Portman ((UI/UX consultant at UI Breakfast


In conclusion, conversion rate optimization (CRO) is the process of improving the performance of a website or landing page in order to increase the rate at which visitors take the desired action, such as making a purchase or filling out a form. This is typically achieved through a combination of design, copywriting, and data analysis, with the goal of creating a user experience that is as smooth and effective as possible. User experience (UX) refers to the overall experience of a user when interacting with a website, product, or service, and is an important factor in conversion rate optimization. By focusing on both CRO and UX, businesses can improve the user experience on their website and increase the number of visitors who take the desired action.

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