Share on linkedin
Share on facebook

CRO Process Breakdown For Dummies

What I have to share with you today will bring you a lot of value in understanding what it takes to build a successful CRO program for yourself, or as an agency.

Good evening everyone and welcome to another week and another review! I hope your Thanksgiving Holiday was full of gratitude and you are ready to jump into the Christmas season! Michael Buble will be ringing in your ears before you know it. I’m excited to write to you today about a 7-step CRO process that we’ve been integrating into our CRO program from CXL Institute here at JonDray Consulting.

I’ve been digging into the framework of successful CRO agencies out there today and what’s always astonished me is how different each CRO agency or consultant has for CRO processes. Each one varies in level of complexity and knowledge which is really why I enjoy the programs over at CXL. The ResearchXL framework that they teach really encompasses everything from Analytics, Copy, Neuroscience, Research, and all the processes on how to do so.

Now, I think what I have to share with you today will bring you a lot of value in understanding what it takes to build a successful CRO program for yourself, or as an agency. So without further ado, I’m just going to jump into the first two steps of the 7-step CRO process I’ve been covering the past couple of weeks.

Step One in the Framework: Perform Heuristic Analysis

Heuristic analysis is an interesting one. There are what seems like a hundred different ways to perform a heuristic analysis but some don’t fit the requirements. See the problem with the most heuristic analysis is that they are not objective. Why is that a problem? Because the optimizers own biases about what he or she thinks about a website may make the analysis not valid.

So how does one be more objective in their heuristic analysis? Ask better questions and follow a better framework.

A well-covered heuristic analysis should cover the 7 Levels of Conversion:

  1. Relevance
  2. Trust
  3. Orientation
  4. Security
  5. Convenience
  6. Confirmation

Each category will have its own set of questions for example let’s take a look at Relevance…

  • Is that the place I was searching?“ (analyze traffic sources)
  • Is that for people like me?“ (analyze personas)
  • Content: Does the wording follow the intent, especially headlines?
  • Is emotional resonance created? Is the experience-focused?
  • Does the landing page show the range of products?
  • Is it clear what range of pricing is offered (low/mid/high)?
  • Do value propositions exist that fit the emotional values?
  • Is the whole experience coherent to other pages?
  • Optional: Is storytelling used to create resonance?

And then rate these questions 0-5 (1 being non-existent and 5 being executed well).

Notice how the questions allow you to be more objective and start to form better hypotheses about what to do next.

Typically this framework will be done in conjunction with some competitors. You’d do the same exact comparison to see where you subjectively lay beside your competitors.

Here’s a chart showing an example of a clients heuristic analysis covering the 7-levels of conversion from beginning to end:

When you look at this chart you’ll be able to see what parts of the conversion levels you’re falling behind in. Maybe you’re missing security badges on your eCommerce store so when customers want to add to cart they don’t because the site feels scammy.

Maybe your on-page text isn’t relevant from the ad text or search engine page results so customers feel lost and let down that they didn’t end up where they read that they would.

You see, Heuristic Analysis can be super powerful in helping you form new optimization hypotheses and form an overall picture of what your site is missing.

The second stage of the ResearchXL format is getting into the Technical Analysis. So let’s review it!

Step Two in the Framework: Perform Technical Analysis

What good is your perfect design and copy if your website isn’t working?! Well dang… that would be a big bummer and a waste of resources!

So what are we going to do about it? We’re going to check to make sure our engine is working before we take the car out to the race track. (I hope you like this reference lol)

Like how a car has a computer to check to make sure the engine is working properly you need to plug into your computer (Google Analytics) and start to pull up different reports. Just like how you’d get an engine light when you needed an oil change, or when your tire pressure was to low, we need to configure our computer to do the same.

The three reports we want to pull up are the:

  • Cross-browser
  • Cross-Device
  • Speed Analysis

These three reports give you a peak under the hood about how your website is performing on different browsers, different devices, and how quickly your site loads in all those different devices and browsers.

This is so important because you might find money-making opportunities you didn’t know you had before.

For example, the team and I here at JonDray Consulting had a furniture eCommerce store client who wanted to know what to optimize on his site to increase his revenue per user.

We got right to work and performed this tech analysis and found that one device that was getting a majority of the traffic but none of the sales was something we needed to look into.

After further investigation as a result of this device and browser report, we found that he had a technical glitch on the homepage that didn’t allow those users to go further down the user-journey.

It was completely hidden and he never would have known unless he did a browser check (but who just randomly does those nowadays?!).

That’s why Technical Analysis should always be part of your CRO process. If your site doesn’t work what good is changing copy or your design? It’s pretty much a waste of time and resources. So don’t do that! Instead, follow the 7-step CRO process that I’m going to break down for you over the next week or two.


Following a framework for CRO can save you time and lots and lots and lots and lots of money. Oh yeah, did I say a lot of money? That’s the whole point of hiring a CRO manager or CRO agency. They are there to help you increase revenue and save money.

Next week I’ll cover the last 5 steps in the CRO process so you understand what it takes to be successful in your CRO program!

If you want to build a powerfully successful CRO program within your business reach out to us for a free consultation. We’ll see how we can help you achieve your business goals through CRO!

I’ll see you in the next blog post and happy optimizing!

More Articles

CRO Process Breakdown For Dummies

What I have to share with you today will bring you a lot of value in understanding what it takes to build a successful CRO program for yourself, or as an agency.