What is a UX audit?

User Experience Consultant

A UX Audit is a process that evaluates a digital interface, providing a comprehensive report on potential usability issues and offering heuristics-based recommendations for improvements.

They analyse and identify potential bottlenecks and usability issues on a website, including:

  • Which areas of the site are causing users friction?
  • At what point are they dropping off the site?
  • What aspects of the site are confusing or distracting to users?


During a UX audit, the evaluator will use established heuristics and research to analyse which areas of the site are working for users and which might need improvement. This can include insights from:

  • Review of business and user objectives
  • Conversion metrics
  • Customer care data
  • Sales data
  • Traffic/engagement
  • Compliance with UX standards
  • Usability heuristics
  • Mental modeling
  • Wireframing & prototyping
  • UX best practices


How is a UX audit different from usability testing?

An audit infers problems from a set of pre-established standards or goals, whereas testing surfaces them based on the user actions. However, an evaluator may utilise usability testing during a UX audit if they do not have access to the fundamental metrics, and combine the results with data collected over the longer term and weigh them up against industry standards and product goals.


When should you conduct one?

There is never a bad time to conduct a UX audit, as regular updates can identify if large changes or incremental improvements are needed to ensure a site is user-friendly. In addition, regular UX audits can identify opportunities for improvement that were previously unknown. However, it is not necessary to wait until you see a negative impact on website usage to conduct a UX audit, here are some key scenarios for when a UX audit should be conducted:

  • Your website feels outdated and hasn’t been updated in recent years
  • You’ve launched a new product or website and you’re seeing an unusually high bounce rate
  • Your website/product conversion rates are low
  • Sales through your website/product are declining
  • Key measurable stats on your website/product are dropping off (i.e. average time on page, unique visitors to your page, pages viewed per session etc.)
  • You haven’t received any customer feedback when using your website/product within recent years
  • You’re in the initial stages of a website/product redesign and want to make substantial improvements
  • You launched an MVP but need a second opinion on usability or the general user experience


Read more about what the UX audit process entails in our article UX audits: 6 common questions asked by clients.


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