Knowledge base article

Unlocking User Behaviour: A Guide to Heatmaps

5 minutes reading time

Have you ever wondered how people interact with your website? What do they click on? What areas do they avoid? Besides general web analytics tools, heatmaps are a great tool to give you these answers. They provide you with visual representations of user activity on a webpage, displaying the areas that receive the most and least attention.

In this article, we will explore the different types of heatmaps and how they can help you analyze user interaction with your website. From click heatmaps to scroll heatmaps, we will dive into each type and their benefits. Let’s go!

What are heatmaps and why should you use them?

While standard web analytics tools like Google Analytics provide valuable insights into user behavior, they often present the data in tables, charts, and graphs that may be difficult to understand for non-technical users.

Heatmaps, on the other hand, provide a simple, visual representation of user behavior that can be easily understood. A heatmap is basically an interactive image of your website. They allow you to see which areas of a webpage are receiving the most attention, which links and buttons are being clicked on the most, and which areas are being ignored by users.

Apart from that, heatmaps allow you to analyze user behavior in real-time, which can be especially useful for testing and validating changes to your website. You can see the impact of changes you make and adjust your approach.

So, heatmaps provide a simpler, more visual way to analyze user behavior on a webpage, which can be easier to understand and interpret than the data provided by standard web analytics tools. They allow you to optimize your website for better user engagement and conversion rates, and provide real-time feedback on changes you make.

Which types of heatmaps are there?

Most people, when they think of heatmaps, think of a clickmap, as it is the most common. But, as briefly highlighted before, there are many types of heatmaps. Let’s look at the most common four.

Click heatmaps: These heatmaps show where users click on a webpage. They help identify which elements are being clicked on the most and which areas are being ignored. This can help you optimize your website for better user engagement.

Scroll heatmaps: These heatmaps track how far down the page users scroll. They help identify which areas of the page are being seen and which areas are being missed. This can help you optimize your website’s layout and content.

Move heatmaps: These heatmaps show where users move their mouse on a webpage. They help identify which areas are getting the most attention and which areas are being ignored.

Attention heatmaps: These heatmaps show the areas of a webpage that receive the most attention from users. They are created by combining click, scroll, and move data to give you a comprehensive view of user activity.

These can help you identify areas of your website that may be confusing or uninteresting to users, and make changes to improve their experience. Additionally, heatmaps can help you test and confirm changes you make to your website by providing visual feedback on their impact on user behavior.

What are good heatmapping tools?

There are many heatmapping tools available, and the best one for you will depend on your specific needs and budget. Below you will find a small overview of the most used tools in the market.

Hotjar: Hotjar is a popular heatmapping tool that offers a wide range of features, including click, scroll, and move heatmaps, as well as session recording and conversion funnel analysis. Hotjar also provides feedback polls and surveys, making it a comprehensive user feedback and analysis tool.

Crazy Egg: Crazy Egg is another popular heatmapping tool that offers click, scroll, and attention heatmaps, as well as session recording and A/B testing capabilities. Crazy Egg also provides visual reports and recommendations to help you optimize your website’s design and layout.

Mouseflow: Mouseflow offers a wide range of features, including click, scroll, and move heatmaps, as well as session recording, funnel analysis, and form analytics. Mouseflow also offers A/B testing and feedback surveys, making it a comprehensive user feedback and analysis tool.

Lucky Orange: Lucky Orange offers click, scroll, and attention heatmaps, as well as session recording and form analytics. Lucky Orange also offers chat and feedback polls to help you engage with users and gather feedback.

These are just a few examples of the many heatmapping tools available. If you want to learn about more tools be sure to check out our tool overview. When choosing a heatmapping tool, it’s important to consider your specific needs and budget, as well as the features and support provided by each tool.

What should you consider when choosing a heatmapping tool?

When choosing a heatmapping tool, there are several factors to consider. Here are some of them:

Type of heatmaps: Different heatmapping tools offer different types of heatmaps, such as click heatmaps, scroll heatmaps, attention heatmaps, and more. Consider which type of heatmap will provide the most valuable insights for your website.

User interface: Look for a heatmapping tool with an intuitive and user-friendly interface. The tool should be easy to set up and use, and provide clear and actionable insights.

Data accuracy: It’s important to choose a heatmapping tool that provides accurate and reliable data. Look for a tool that uses advanced tracking and data collection methods to ensure accurate insights.

Integrations: Consider whether the heatmapping tool integrates with other tools and platforms you are using, such as Google Analytics, to provide a more comprehensive view of your website’s performance.

Support and resources: Look for a heatmapping tool with good customer support and resources, such as documentation, tutorials, and webinars, to help you get the most out of the tool.

Pricing: Different heatmapping tools offer different pricing models, ranging from free to paid plans. Consider your budget and the features you need when choosing a tool.

Obviously, most tools are quite similar. So chosing one does not have to be that hard. You can always try them out since most offer a free trial or even a free version.

The takeaway

Hopefully, now you have a clear picture of what heatmaps are and how you can use them best. A simple clickmap will usually be sufficient for most SMBs, but if you want more, don’t worry there are plenty of options out there. Most heatmapping toosl offer heatmaps in combination with session recordings which give you an even more granualy view of the users journey on your site. If you want to learn more about the different tools on the market be sure to check out our tool overview. Cheers!

Profielfoto Freek Kampen

By Freek Kampen

Data & Analytics specialist and co-owner of New North Digital. With a background in online advertising, I solve tracking and data issues for entrepreneurs and agencies.

Related

Continue learning

Looking for more answers?

Check out our knowledge base for more articles and glossary terms. Level up your knowledge with our articles on core concepts in web analytics.

Continue learning
Compare list
Close
Get help

Send us a message