A heatmap is a graphical representation of data that shows the hottest parts of a website based on visitor interaction. Heatmaps allow you to see how people relate to your site by tracking their screen movements. They help you analyze your site content, monitor conversion rates, and identify where users may be having problems navigating your site.
Why the name: heatmap?
Well, I’m gonna simplify things and say that heatmaps use red and green colors to show you the most used (green), the less used elements on a website (red), and everything in between (shades of orange).
Heatmaps help analyze website user behavior. In addition, they assist you in finding gaps in user experience and can help you identify a new hypothesis for testing stuff on your website. A successful heatmap tool or plugin should provide accurate data on the number of clicks, scroll depth, browser height, scrolling frequency, and other parameters that can be used to improve user experience on any given website.
Now, let’s take a look at these heatmap tools:
Hotjar is one of the most widely used customer behavior tools that helps you understand how users interact with your website. It allows you to pinpoint specific areas that need to be improved for a better customer experience.
The first feature that is available are heatmaps. These visual maps show you exactly where people land on your website and which parts they research the most. Additionally, you can observe your website through the eyes of the visitor with the help of Hotjar’s recordings.
If you need to hear directly from people, you can do so by offering tailored surveys or simply gathering incoming feedback on the website.
When it comes to pricing, Hotjar offers plenty of options for businesses of different sizes. While the free version covers only up to 1000 pageviews or heatmaps, the Business or Scale plan may allow the analysis of up to 4000 daily sessions.
How to install Hotjar on WordPress
- Sign up for Hotjar,
- From the WordPress dashboard, head over to Plugins -> Add New,
- Search for Hotjar and click on “Install Now”,
- Navigate to the installed plugin in WordPress,
- Copy the Hotjar Site ID from the account and paste it within WordPress,
- Save changes,
- Verify the installation.
Note: Hotjar plugin only works for WordPress 4.6 or higher.
FullSession is one of the most popular free Hotjar alternatives that offers interactive heatmaps to help you track dynamic elements such as sliders, side panels, drop-down menus, pop-ups, and much more.
The maps can be used to increase the level of user experience on the website. Find out what areas of your website your users actually click on to increase conversion and the performance of each page.
Measuring digital engagement has never been easier, thanks to the in-depth segmentation tools provided by FullSession. This feature also allows you to better understand what content sticks and helps you improve your game in order to make full use of your time and efforts.
How to install FullSession on WordPress
- Sign up for FullSession,
- Copy FullSession code snippet that shows on your setup page,
- From the WordPress dashboard, go to Plugins -> Add New,
- Look for “Insert Headers and Footers” and click on “Install Now”, then “Activate”,
- From the WordPress dashboard, go to Settings -> Insert Headers and Footers,
- Paste the copied code to “Scripts in Header”.
CrazyEgg is an easy-to-use and highly customizable heatmap tool.
The plugin corrects the usability issues on your website and helps you find out where all your reader’s attention is going.
One of the best features of CrazyEgg is the confetti heatmap that shows how users from different sources interact with your website. Another essential feature is the possibility to include insights layers to Google Analytics.
CrazyEgg also provides the following features:
- Heatmap for both desktop and mobile screens
- Real-time statistics on click-rate, scroll-rate, dwell time of page elements
- Different types of heatmaps – scroll maps, click maps
- Visualization of varying browser’s scrolling behavior
Plans start at $24 per month for 30,000 tracked page views, 25 snapshots, and 100 recordings per month.
How to Set Up Crazy Egg integration with WordPress
- Sign up to CrazyEgg and copy the tracking code from the account;
- From the WordPress dashboard, head over to Plugins -> Add New.
- Look for “Crazy Egg” and click “Install Now”, then “Activate”,
- Go to the WordPress Crazy Egg settings and add your Crazy Egg tracking code and click save.
4. Contentsquare (formerly Clicktale)
Contentsquare goes beyond heatmaps and user recordings. It’s best suited for enterprise brands. More than 750 enterprise brands, many of them listed in Fortune500, work with Contentsquare.
Contentsquare connects metrics to actual customer behavior, combining the power of rich data, machine, and human intelligence to deliver better outcomes. The software then displays the data in colorful graphs and charts to easily see where visitors clicked, where they stopped reading, what pages were visited and how long visitors stayed on each page.
They also offer a range of comparison tools that allow you to compare behavior analytics and see how website engagement changes over time.
5. Aurora Heatmap
Aurora Heatmap is a real-time data exploration and mapping software used to visualize networks, social media, customer service tickets, and more. The map-based interface lets you explore your data in detail without distracting traditional charts or graphs.
the tool offers a free plan and two premium plans, starting from $100 per month. The free plan starts with five pages on a single site, and the paid ones offer unlimited pages on up to an unlimited number of websites.
How to add Aurora Heatmap to WordPress?
- Login to your WordPress admin,
- From Plugins -> Add New and search for “Aurora Heatmap”.
- Click Install Now, then Activate Plugin.
Now, you just have to sit and wait for the website visitors, and analyze their behavior.
Ptengine is a heat map software that lets you see where your website visitors click on the page and how far they scroll down. Not only does it tell you about page views, but it also details your users’ interactions with outbound links, downloads of files, and sending of mail messages.
Pricing at Ptengine starts from $49 per month for unlimited heatmaps and 3,000 pageviews. They also offer a free plan to suit everyone’s needs. You can get one heatmap with unlimited data for 3,000 page views on a single site.
Ptengine does not have a dedicated WordPress plugin, but you can easily deploy its tracking code like in the case of FullSession, which we explained above.
Mouseflow lets you know how your customers navigate your site – every page, form, refill, and blank submission. The information gathered can be filtered in real-time to help improve the user experience. Mouseflow is a great way to quickly create custom interactive surveys with varied date ranges and mobile and responsive layouts.
Mouseflow also allows filtering maps by users’ geographic location. Another exciting feature of this plugin is the form analytics that lets you see why users leave the forms. It also allows you to track funnels to see how different traffic sources act differently on your website.
Pricing starts at €24 per month for 5,000 recorded sessions limited to one website. You’ll get 500 recorded sessions for the free plan, but the cost increases if you want to buy paid plans for more than one site.
How to Install the ‘Mouseflow for WordPress’ Plugin
- Sign up for Mouseflow and copy the tracking code from your account,
- From the WordPress dashboard go to Plugins -> Add New, and search for “Mouseflow for WordPress”,
- Click on the “Install Now” button, then on “Activate”,
- From the WordPress dashboard, head over to Mouseflow -> Tracking Code.
- Paste the “Insert Tracking Code” and save your changes.
In your Mouseflow account, you will be able to access heatmaps and user session recordings.
8. Lucky Orange
Trusted by 300,000+ websites worldwide, Lucky Orange tracks visitors’ online movements and generates a report, which shows where people click, scroll, and hover on the website. It also offers session recording and traffic segmentation.
The prices for Lucky Orange start at $10/ month. This includes 25,000 page views on a single site, and data is stored for 30 days. Higher-priced plans give you more page views and sites, but it also means that you’ll only be able to keep content for 30 days. Storage extensions cost extra.
To make it easier for users of WordPress sites to deploy Lucky Orange, a plugin was developed.
How to Install Lucky Orange Plugin on WordPress
- Sign up to Lucky Orange and copy the Site ID from the account.
- From the WordPress dashboard, head over to Plugins -> Add New.
- Look for “Lucky Orange” and click “Install Now”, then “Activate”,
- Go to the WordPress -> Lucky Orange -> Settings and paste the Site ID.
The Inspectlet dashboard has a live view of each page’s traffic in real-time, allowing you to see where your visitors come from, what they do when they get there, which parts of the page they’re interacting with the most, how long they stay on your site and lots of other information. You can use these insights to identify critical pages in your website.
They offer powerful funnel analytics and tagging options. The ability to tag individual users gives you the chance to see how they behave on returning visits.
Pricing starts at $39 per month, with 10,000 recorded sessions limited to one website. The free plan offers 2,500 recorded sessions for one website per month.
Inspectlet has developed a WordPress plugin but hasn’t been tested with the latest 3 major releases of WordPress. It may no longer be maintained or supported and may have compatibility issues when used with more recent versions of WordPress.
So, in order to install Inspectlet on your WordPress website, you can proceed like in the case of FullSession, by adding a tracking code to your website’s code using the “Insert Headers and Footers” plugin.
Clicky is an analytics software that also can provide website heatmaps. This heatmap software analyzes the content on your site to provide you with insights into what people are clicking on. It can help you find out if someone is scrolling, scanning, or reading your content. Not only do you get access to all the great features offered by Clicky, but you also can compare things like your visitors’ behavior on specific pages or what they look at first.
Now, don’t get fooled by their poor website, because the tool is used by more than one million websites.
In order to deploy Clicky on your WordPress website, you can paste the unique tracking code with the “Insert Headers and Footers” plugin, mentioned above.
Aaand, that’s a wrap.
As the online space has become more competitive, companies are looking for any edge to beat their competitors. Heatmaps are a great way to find out where users are clicking on your site, whether to gain page views or make purchases; this information is valuable for any company that wants to create an optimal customer experience.
There has been much debate about the usefulness of heatmaps, but many experts still think they’re an essential tool for analyzing visitor behavior and improving web content.
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Mohamed Sehwail is a pioneer investment and financial executive who capitalized on strong entrepreneurial and financial skills through working in leading roles over the past decade. He's the founder of FullSession.