Modified on Fri, 08 Dec 2023 at 01:10 PM


What is a Waterfall?

The Waterfall’s primary purpose is to help you track and analyze various customer journeys. It is a graphical and numerical representation of the sequence of steps that visitors perform on your site, displayed as a line chart funnel. The Waterfall filters all your collected visits based on your step configuration and reveals how many users reached a specific step, identifies steps in the customer journey that might have flaws and cause drop-offs, and shows how many users reach the final, desired destination.

On the Waterfalls page, you will find the list of all the Waterfalls you’ve set. Each Waterfall is presented in a table row and includes information about the Waterfall: its Name, Description, and the number of steps it consists of. To view a specific Waterfall, click the 'SHOW' button in the corresponding row.

To create a new Waterfall, click the 'CREATE NEW' button located in the top right corner of the Waterfalls page. For more details about setting a goal see our dedicated article How to set up Goal or Waterfall.

Waterfalls can help you visualize form submissions, account registration, check-out process, and more. You have the flexibility to decide what you want to track, and there’s no limit to the number of Waterfalls you can set or the number of steps in one Waterfall. However, keep in mind that Waterfalls are based on visits. It means that if the user ends their visit at step 2 and continues the journey on their next visit, the Waterfall will consider it as a drop-off at step 2. 

That’s why it is not always good to build extra-long Waterfalls. Sometimes, it’s even better to have several smaller ones to break down complex processes into digestible chunks. This is especially true if your product allows users to return to specific points in a journey rather than starting from the very beginning with each visit.


Imagine you’ve set up a Waterfall to track a purchase process with the following steps: Main page -> Category page -> Product page -> 'Add to cart' button click -> Cart visit -> Checkout visit -> 'Order and pay' button click -> Purchase success page. You may think that this detailed Waterfall will help you identify almost every potential pain point on a users’ path to making a purchase. However, in reality, it will only capture a segment of converting users and will filter out other flows when users:

  • Skipped the main page and category page because they came from search results or an advertising campaign and landed on a product page; 
  • Never visited a product page because they added all products to the cart directly from the category page level;
  • Started a visit from returning to an abandoned cart and proceeded to checkout.

That’s why we recommend starting from short Waterfalls that contain only the essential steps that every user in every visit must perform, such as visiting checkout, clicking an 'Order and pay' button, and landing on a purchase success page. Then, gradually extend it by adding more steps in different combinations. This approach will help you to understand the most common paths and the impact of preceding steps on the conversion.

Waterfall Overview

In the Waterfall view, you'll find the most important information about your users' journeys.

  1. Waterfall steps. At the top, you will see each of the steps in your Waterfall. Hover over the '?' icon to see the information about the number of visits that reached this step and the configuration details of the step.
  2. Step completion. It shows the percentage of visits that reached the step. Please note that this percentage value refers to the first step of the waterfall, which is taken as 100%, not for all visits.
  3. Drop-offs. This metric shows what percentage of visits have ended at this step of the waterfall. CUX will highlight in pink the significant drop-offs that require your attention.
  4. Visit recordings. For each drop in traffic, you can analyze a list of curated recordings to find the reasons behind drop-offs. Just click 'Find out why', and CUX will take you to the pre-selected recordings list.
  5. Table view. For your convenience, we also present the Waterfall data in the form of a table.
  6. Date picker and time periods comparison. By default in the Waterfall, you’ll see data for the last 14 days. However, you can choose any data range within your retention period using the data picker.

Waterfall Comparison

To view changes in Waterfall performance over time, click the 'Compare by Period' toggle under the date picker. By default, CUX will select a date range of the same length prior to the original one, but you can choose any data range within your retention period for comparison.

Differences in the compared period will be visualized in the following areas: 

  1. Step completion. The first percentage value (black) represents the originally selected date range, and the second one (gray) represents the compared period. 
  2. Drop-offs. Comparison of how many visits ended on the selected step in the current and compared date ranges.
  3. Line chart. The difference between the original and compared date ranges is visualized on a chart. Below, you can find the chart legend with colors corresponding to the selected comparison periods. 
  4. Table view. Here you can see the increase or decrease in % value of step completions or drop-offs.

Edit Waterfall

To edit a Waterfall: 

  1. Open the Waterfall tab
  2. Choose a Waterfall you want to edit from the loist and click on Manage>Update Waterfall 
  3. In the window on the left, you can edit the Waterfall's Name and Description 
  4. In the Waterfall builder, you can:
  • Change Waterfall’s name and/or description  
  • Edit existing steps settings 
  • Add steps Remove steps (if the number of steps is more than 1)
  • Reorder steps by dragging tiles

5. To save changes, click on 'Update Waterfall' button.

Convert Waterfall to Goal

To convert a Waterfall into a Goal, follow these steps:

  1. Open the Waterfall list and choose a Waterfall you want to convert
  2. Click Manage>Convert to Goal

  3. Give the Goal a name and (optional) description.

  4. You can freely edit the Goal (add and subtract steps, change their order, etc.) or click “Create Goal” to save.

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