Getting the most from CRO: a project manager’s perspective

Having worked on a large number of Conversion Rate Optimisation engagements, we like to think we have a solid idea of how to yield success.

It’s never as simple as the engagement succeeding or failing of course. It’s always more nuanced than that. When a business is evaluating the work of their CRO team, their decision is often guided by calculations around ROI and overall contribution to growth.

Here are some of the things you can do to help your CRO team achieve the best possible outcome.


  1. Ensure you allocate a project lead with some authority

There are likely to be multiple stakeholders and although everyone is working towards the same common goal, each stakeholder has their own priorities. Alongside this, there are moving parts such as tools, processes and software.

Without a project lead with the authority to approve and move forwards on tests and changes, progress tends to be way too slow.

In order for CRO specialists to undertake data collection to fuel conversion research and A/B tests, it’s essential that there’s someone on the client’s team who can get stuff done.


  1. Don’t allow your team to resist change

If you’re working with a CRO agency, it means you want your website to perform better than it currently is. You can’t improve without making changes.

Someone will have spent hours perfecting the design of the site, adhering to brand guidelines, perfecting functionality, etc. We understand the team responsible feel protective over it, but in order to grow your business you must set aside personal preferences and seek to better understand your audience and their needs.

CRO specialists recommend website enhancements based on comprehensive user research and data analysis. Each suggested change should be driven by insight gathered through comprehensive conversion research and A/B tested. If the variation demonstrates an uplift in conversion rate, then it’s serving users better than the control.

Rejecting suggestions based on hunches and cognitive biases or delaying changes that have been tested and won because you don’t like them as much as the control hinders the progression of your business and your ability to generate a return from CRO.


  1. Ensure you have development resource available

In order for CRO to succeed, it’s important to have development resource available to implement fixes and changes swiftly.

Sharing goals and priorities regularly and committing to getting fixes and changes live as fast as possible is essential. Time spent chasing changes or fixes is time wasted.

Also, having to wait ages for things to go live can impact our test plan and mean less testing can be completed overall in a 12 month period.


  1. Ensure your tools and systems are well-documented

The speed at which a team can access vital information will impact the initial stages of a CRO engagement. Access to tools and data sources like Google Analytics, live chat logs, research tools and testing tools are all needed to ensure we can do our work.

Information that hasn’t been documented correctly or knowledge that gets lost with people who have left the company can seriously delay progress.

Having an organised hub of documentation will help in the long run. It negates the need for repetitive requests for the same information and ensures we can focus on getting you a result as fast as possible.


  1. Determine what success looks like at the beginning

There needs to be agreement in terms of how success of the CRO work is going to be measured. We all know, you can’t just add up all the winning test uplifts to arrive at an overall uplift figure for the year. So how are you going to judge your CRO team’s efforts?

For example, does your team understand that tracking conversion rate month on month and judging changes on this basis is unscientific and often misleading?

The criteria for success needs to be understood clearly from the outset in order to avoid misunderstandings further down the line when the ROI is being determined.


If you’d like to talk to a conversion expert about how to improve your website’s performance, give us a call on 0161 713 2434 or email [email protected]

Nina Mack

11th December 2017

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