It’s puzzling how many people put in the hard work to drive visitors to their site, but stop short of looking under the hood and understanding what these users really do when they get there.
They might look at their Google Analytics to understand some high level metrics like how many people visit their website, what pages they are going to, what parts of the country they’re coming from, and how much time they spend on average. But they stop short there.
Getting potential customers to your site is half the battle. Once there, you have to carry them to the finish line and convince them to use your product. To do that, you have to get in the passenger seat with your visitors to experience what they’re going through.
Fortunately, today, there are easy to use user tracking tools that help you with exactly that, and can help in various ways.
1. Reduce bounce rate
When users come to your site, you have no more than 8 seconds to grab their attention. It’s incredibly important to successfully navigate them through your site.
With user tracking tools, you can watch video playbacks of every user who comes to your site. You can see their mouse movement, how they scroll, and how they go about clicking on your buttons or images. It’s like having a security camera on your site.
Suddenly, you’re no longer guessing what’s happening on your site. You’re actually seeing it. You can use this knowledge to improve your bounce rate.
You might see that the main CTA to your demo page is too inconspicuous, and many users mouse over it or don’t even notice it. With this key insight, you might change the size or color of the CTA, to drive more engagement to it and effectively reduce bounce rate.
Especially when it comes to your homepage, which may be your top of funnel, every improvement in bounce rate is an opportunity to engage more users. With user tracking tools, we were able to reduce bounce rate by a huge 41% on our solitaire initiative.
2. Improve copy to get users to convert
Your copy is key to convey the value of your product. You have to speak to your customers problems, needs, and emotions to connect with them, and then convince them that you have a solution for them.
This is no easy feat. These are people who know little about your brand and value proposition. In a world where you’re jumping through browser tabs, how do you write copy that keeps them engaged?
To do this, you have to understand how your users speak and how they think about their problems. Fortunately, user tracking tools offer a powerful way to do this.
With them, you can instantly launch a survey or prompt to ask them questions like “Why did you come to our website?”
While a question like that is ostensibly simple, the answers you get are powerful. If you offer an HR software suite for example, you might find out that your customers are there because “compliance is painful.” Just like that, you can start to get ideas on how you can change your copy to speak to your customers, and improve your conversion rate.
3. Improve your funnel
Getting a user to your end goal like a check out page is like jumping through a series of hurdles. They come to your homepage, then your product page, then your register page, and then your purchase page.
Each step represents a possibility where potential customers can drop off, and as customers drop off at different stages of your funnel, you are missing more opportunities.
While analytics packages can help you understand this, they often require number crunching to get these insights. With user tracking software, however, for the sophisticated or unsophisticated, you can instantly get a clear view of your funnel.
You might quickly find out that 20% of your customers drop off on your homepage, while on your product page 90% of your customers drop off. This suggests that you’re doing a great job on your homepage of getting potential customers interested, but something is going wrong on your product page.
With user tracking tools you can then launch surveys, review user videos, and analyze heat maps to understand what’s happening. You might find through heat maps that hardly anyone is reading important product copy which is further down on the page, which might suggest you need to move it up.
4. Fix bugs
Bugs can be elusive. No matter how many times you QA a product, they can slip through the cracks.
While user tracking tools are great for getting prospective customers to the finish line, they can also help you find bugs.
For instance, you might see in your product funnel that a particular page has a massive drop off. With user tracking tools, you can look at heat maps to identify where on the page there might be a problem. Then, by reviewing user recordings, you can actually pinpoint and see what the bug might be.
The team at Hey Orca was able to find a bug that had evaded them for months by doing this, and as a result improved their net promoter score.
5. Identify user needs
Similar to using user tracking tools to fix product bugs, you can also use it to identify new product opportunities.
With user tracking tools, you can instantly launch a prompt that asks “What features are missing from our product.” Whether it’s open ended or multiple choice, you’ll start to see common needs among your users. These in context questions are incredibly powerful because you’re reaching a user at their moment of need or interest, which allows you to get deeper insights.
If you have a website that helps students with citations, you might find out that they also want a plagiarism detector. You can collect enough data where you can then rank what features are the most important to build, which will inform your product roadmap.
Needless to say, user tracking tools like HotJar and CrazyEgg are quite powerful. They are easy to implement and simple to use, and their value is immeasurable. Once it becomes part of our business processes, you’ll find countless opportunities to improve.