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CRO Specialist Interview
Questions

25 Questions and Answers by Ryan Brown

Question 1 of 25

How would you test the earliest stages of a marketing funnel?

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CRO Specialist Interview Questions

  1. 1.

    How would you test the earliest stages of a marketing funnel?

      This question tests your understanding of marketing funnels. The first question being asked is, 'what's the earliest stage of a marketing funnel?' The second question is, 'what would you test for there?'

      Ryan's Answer

      "What's most important in the earliest stages of the marketing funnel, which are generally responsible for collecting warm, unqualified leads, is the quality of leads. I'd test the earliest stages of the marketing funnel using a performance indicator like the percentage of new leads that became qualified leads."

  2. 2.

    Do you have a background in eCommerce/Amazon/eBay/etc?

      Traditionally, CRO has been more concerned with lead generation than eCommerce. More and more, CRO specialists are being tasked with managing eCommerce listings. Many of the same principles apply, so if you've worked with any of retail eCommerce, aggregators like Amazon, or social commerce, be sure to mention the platforms during your interview.

      Ryan's Answer

      "I've managed Amazon listings and worked in traditional eCommerce for a brand with over 400 SKUs."

  3. 3.

    How would you structure a conversion rate audit of our entire marketing department?

      This is a big question. It's likely intended to qualify you for a senior or director-level position. It'd be impossible to dive into the details in an interview, so keep your answer focused on the process of doing an audit.

      Ryan's Answer

      "I can assure you that my process of conversion rate auditing is sufficient to audit an entire marketing department. I'd start by researching and building an inventory of your marketing assets. Then, I'd identify KPIs for each of the assets and ensure that the KPI is being tracked. Then, I'd use industry benchmarks to determine which, if any of the assets are obviously underperforming. I'd start testing with the most obvious candidates and use what we learn to inform our tests going forward."

  4. 4.

    Have you tested PPC ads?

      In almost every case, conversion rate optimization includes optimizing pay-per-click and other traffic-generating channels. If you've got a process for testing Google Ads, that's a bonus. If you have worked with other ad networks and tested ad creative across several types of media, you're a home run candidate.

      Ryan's Answer

      "In addition to Google Ads Search and Display, I've tested and optimized Sponsored Amazon Listings."

  5. 5.

    How would you test a page intended to qualify leads?

      This question asks about marketing-qualified leads, or MQLs. This is typically the final stage in marketing before a sales team actively takes the reins on managing the lead. After the sales team gets the lead, they'll either agree that the lead is qualified (it becomes a SQL) or they'll disagree. A strong and accurate qualification page ensures a high MQL:SQL ratio.

      Ryan's Answer

      "On a page with the goal of qualifying leads, there are a few key metrics to look at. Obviously, the number of people who complete the page is important. Beyond that, the accuracy of the qualification process would be the second thing I would test: how many marketing-qualified leads became sales-qualified?"

  6. 6.

    Describe the pros and cons of using shorter call-to-action forms vs. longer CTA forms.

      The interviewer asks questions like this to test your strategic knowledge within your role. Different employees may have different needs within the organization. Being able to explain the pros and cons of a change can help you to find compromises that keep everyone happy.

      Ryan's Answer

      "Typically, shorter CTA forms see higher completion, but longer CTA forms offer more information that we can use to qualify leads early."

  7. 7.

    How would you optimize a social commerce post?

      This question is simply asking about how to test organic traffic channels. You can respond the same way you would to questions about testing blog posts. Set a key performance indicator and measure it.

      Ryan's Answer

      "The key performance indicators for social posts are reach, engagement, and purchase. I'd test and optimize each independently."

  8. 8.

    Do you have any questions for me?

      CRO specialists always slot into a larger organizations and often are replacing an outgoing optimizer. This is a good chance for you to get an idea about what kind of optimization work has already been done at the organization. Ask questions to get a better feel for how your role will affect the larger organization.

      Ryan's Answer

      "Which are your best-performing landing pages or advertisements? What do you like about them?"

  9. 9.

    What is your statistical background?

      At its core, conversion rate optimization is a statistical discipline. While a number of software suites or platforms will abstract away the statistics for end-users, they might do so erroneously, leading to errors in judgment. A strong background in statistics will help you to understand what the deluge of data actually means.

      Ryan's Answer

      "I took statistics in college and have worked with SPSS to perform statistical analysis on data."

  10. 10.

    Do you have a background in HTML/CSS?

      Light HTML/CSS is expected from a CRO specialist, since it would be far too expensive/time consuming to bring in a developer to do things like moving a block of text around on the page. If you don't have an HTML/CSS experience, you can hopefully lean on your experience working with landing page design software.

      Ryan's Answer

      "Yes, I've worked with light HTML/CSS throughout my career. While I'm not a developer, I can make changes to an existing template."

  11. 11.

    Do you have a background in copywriting/editing?

      It's not uncommon for a conversion rate optimization specialist to rewrite headlines or body copy during tests. If you have experience writing headlines, particularly as a copywriter, definitely lean on that during the interview. If you have results from headlines you've rewritten, those are a nice share, too.

      Ryan's Answer

      "I used to work in PPC marketing, where I wrote the headline and subhead for all our ads. In just days after I joined the team, the variation I wrote on our most popular ad increased their results by 10%."

  12. 12.

    Describe some microconversions that you might use inside a shopping cart.

      This question is intended to tease out your deeper understanding of conversion rate optimization. Microconversions are actions-which-lead-to-conversion. For example, if your customer receives an email with a link in it to a purchase page, clicking the link and making a purchase would be conversions. In this case, a microconversion might be scrolling the page (e.g. not immediately bouncing) or submitting payment information.

      Ryan's Answer

      "Some common microconversions for shopping cart optimization would be things like setting product quantity, adding shipping or billing information, or adding a payment method. These actions directly indicate that the user is closer to purchase than they were before, so they're microconversions."

  13. 13.

    What is your technical background?

      As with any digital marketing specialty, CRO practitioners are often doing some advanced computing to gather the data they need. This most often includes installing or troubleshooting javascript tracking snippets. You might also need to perform more unique tasks like logging in remotely to a specialized data processing computer.

      Ryan's Answer

      "I'm proficient in basic Javascript and have experience with dozens of different software platforms."

  14. 14.

    How do you stay organized?

      A conversion rate optimization job requires a high level of organization and attention to detail. It's not uncommon for a CRO specialist to be running twenty or thirty tests at any given time, so keeping track of these tests is paramount. Not to mention, all the tests you've run have data and analysis to support them, and these results should inform your future decisions. Explain your strategy for keeping on top of so much data.

      Ryan's Answer

      "Excel is my number one tool for managing ongoing tests. After assigning every test a number, I log the duration, results, and relevant links into Excel."

  15. 15.

    Describe the elements of a perfect landing page.

      If you can't describe all the elements of a landing page, how will you know how to break up your tests? Typically, you won't see any conversion lift from changing two or three words in a single feature or benefit on the page, but you might very-well see a conversion list by reorganizing your entire features and benefits section. It's common practice to test each of these elements independently.

      Ryan's Answer

      "The elements of a perfect landing page are a strong headline, unique selling proposition, features/benefits that answer a consumer's pain points, a video showing use, social proof, a closing argument, and a call to action."

  16. 16.

    How would you report the results of a conversion test?

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  17. 17.

    What sort of results can we expect from Conversion Rate Optimization?

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  18. 18.

    What are some types of ROI that wouldn’t commonly show up in your data?

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  19. 19.

    Have you done any design work?

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  20. 20.

    What research tools do you use to determine what to test?

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  21. 21.

    How do you pre-test conversion rate on pages not yet receiving traffic?

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  22. 22.

    How many tests do you run on a landing page to ensure its optimized?

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  23. 23.

    Do you use a swipe file?

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  24. 24.

    What software do you use to perform A/B tests?

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  25. 25.

    Where do you typically look for low hanging fruit to optimize?

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