A website that looks good can only get you so far; a website that works well is even more critical for getting visitors to stick around and convert. How, though, do you quantify whether your visitors are interacting with your website the way you intended? Sure, it’s nice having traditional analytics tools (numbers, charts, and graphs, etc.) at your fingertips, granted you know how to interpret that data. But what if you could be that fly on your user’s wall or parrot on their shoulder literally watching their online behavior?
Here at Epic Web Studios, we have grown to appreciate a tool that lets you do just that. Hotjar boasts three incredibly useful functionalities that can offer immediate insights on whether your website is up to snuff.
Website User Heatmaps
Getting warmer or colder? Hotjar will overlay webpages you choose to analyze with a color-coded heatmap, with areas of most activity highlighted in red and areas of least activity highlighted in blue. This allows people like marketers and web designers to instantly identify where end users are (and aren’t) spending their time with minimal guesswork. Hotjar can generate three different types of heatmaps:
- Scroll maps: Hotjar’s proverbial reading rainbow — bands the designated page with corresponding warm or cool color based on the percentage of users still reading as they scroll down.
- Move maps: The longer a user’s mouse cursor lingers in an area, the hotter (redder) that spot will appear on this heat map variation. For desktop user analysis only.
- Click maps: Sums up the total number of clicks or taps within a defined number of page views (the free version of Hotjar caps it at 2,000) and creates a heatmap based on where the greatest percentage of those clicks or taps fell.
Website Visitor Recordings
Does Hotjar’s Visitor Recordings function qualify as spying? Maybe, but with only the purest of intents — to help web designers construct the most cohesive, streamlined user experience possible. Hotjar will record individual sessions and allow you to replay them, which is as close as you can get to being in the same room and asking them for feedback yourself. Within a relatively small sample size, you’ll be able to see whether users are navigating through your website with confidence of a longtime resident or the hesitancy of a stranger in a strange, strange land. With that information, you’ll be able to make adjustments in design, content, and functionality accordingly.
Website Conversion Funnels
Establish a goal (such as someone signing up for your service or buying your product), the pathway users might take to get there, and see where they are dropping off. Hotjar will calculate a conversion percentage and corresponding graphic based on the total number of sessions in a given time period.
Hotjar’s basic package is totally free, easy to set up, and analyzes up to 2,000 page views a day. The Epic Web Studios team has made a habit of including it with every new website we build, as its application in getting the absolute most out of your website and business is tremendous. For older websites, it is a great tool for guiding redesigns, preserving what worked well and scrapping what didn’t. Harness the insights of Hotjar’s heatmaps and get your website — and, in turn, your business — on the larger heatmap of your industry.
Originally published at https://www.tumblr.com on June 14, 2019.