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Essential page engagement tools

Author's avatar By Robert Allen 07 Jul, 2016
Essential Essential topic

Use these tools to assess and improve on-site user interaction

Time-on-site, bounce rate, page views. You've probably grappled trying to boost these metrics for a while, and it can be difficult to make big improvements. Getting the right tools can make a massive difference and really help to generate that all important engagement which lets you boost these key metrics and thus helps you rise in the SERPs and sell more products. So we took at look at 5 of the best page engagement tools so you can see which ones are right for you and give them a try.

Act Quarter

What do these tools do?

These tools help assess and improve the effectiveness of website design including different page template types such as home page, landing and campaign pages.

Why are they important to digital marketers?

These tools can help digital marketers improve conversion and goal completion rates, while reducing the need for IT support and ensuring brand stakeholders are kept happy with the consistent design (look and feel) of the pages built. They may also help reduce the amount of design input required once a template is agreed.

Key things to consider before purchasing and using these tools:

Scale. Understand how much time your team are spending on managing and creating landing and campaign pages. Are you operating at a scale to benefit from these tools?

Are there other benefits you can leverage? For example, developing custom PPC landing pages testing different copy, images and call to actions.

Be clear on the levels of reporting and customisation you require to deliver your objectives. These are two areas which differ significantly between the tools in this category.

Finally, when testing and optimising bear in mind that you’ll need enough traffic to ensure the tools can run the experiments. The greater the volume of traffic, the quicker you’ll have results.

#1 Google Page AnalyticsGoogle analytics

A free Chrome extension that integrates with Google Analytics .  Also available as a report within Google Analytics (Behaviour menu).

Why do I need it?

The Page Analytics Chrome Extension allows you to see how customers interact with your web pages, including what they click and don’t click. Use these insights to optimize your website layout, improve user experience, and increase conversions.

What makes it stand out?

It’s useful to have a visual assessment of how users interact with key web pages so you can understand whether call-to-actions are effective.

Key features:

  • Overlays clickthrough and goal outcomes achieved for each link web page.
  • Pageviews, Unique Pageviews, Avg time on page, Bounce Rate, and %Exit plus number of active visitors displayed for reference as you browse pages
  • Can segment by different standard audience types, e.g. mobile users, returning users
  • As with other extensions can be switched off when not needed.

The Smart Insights view

We highly recommend this tool. It offers many of the features of paid services, but is totally free. Fantastic value!

#2 HotjarHotjar

Hotjar is an all-in-one analytics and feedback tool helping you to truly understand your web and mobile site visitors. 

You can get a free trail and a free 'basic' version which has limits of sample size and number of page views.

What makes it stand out?

Other tools in the category don’t all provide insights from prompting visitors with polls. Heat maps can only show you so much, asking people provides a whole nother level of insight. 

Key features:

  • Heatmaps: Visualise your visitors clicks, taps and scrolling behavior.
  • Recordings: Eliminate guesswork with recordings of real visitor behaviour on your site.
  • Polls: Understand what your visitors want and what’s preventing them from achieving it.
  • Funnels & Forms: Find the biggest opportunities for improvement and testing by identifying on which page and at which step most visitors are leaving your site.

The Smart Insights view

This is a relatively new tool, but we prefer it to some of the existing services since it also enables questions to be asked on some pages for qualitative feedback. We subscribe to this service for this reason.

#3 Clicktaleclicktale

Clicktale shows customer behavior and intent across key touchpoints: web, mobile and apps. Clicktale’s deep drill-downs get to the heart of the “how” and “why” behind customer behavior. You have to pay to use the service, but there is a free trail available. 

What makes it stand out?

A good ‘all-in-one’ contender with heatmaps, session replays and form analytics. 

Key features:

  • Data-rich heatmaps: see what visitrors are clicking on
  • Session replays: Visualize exactly what your visitors are experiencing
  • Conversion analytics: discover what’s working (and what’s not) in your funnel and forms.
  • Advanced insights: Surface key data, error reports, and trends to get clear direction on improving customer experience and increase conversions.

The Smart Insights view

Described by its vendors as ‘The world’s #1 enterprise-class experience management platform’, it is aimed at larger organisations, so is more expensive to subscribe to than some platforms. It is a well-established service with the benefit over some other surface in that it combines session replays with heatmaps.

#4 Crazyegg

Crazy eggCrazyegg is a  tool for generating and reviewing heatmaps, scrollmaps and overlays of when people click on your site. You have to pay to use it, but it does offer a 30 day free trail.

What makes it stand out?

It's a simple service with good usability and visualisation for different forms of heatmaps.

 Key features:

  • Heatmap: Where peole click and where they don’t
  • Confetti: Clicks are segmented by referral types
  • Scroll map: Shows how far down the page visitors are scrolling

Smart Insights view

We’re not convinced of the value of paying for a service when Google’s InPage Analytics provides similar functionality. However, you may want to subscribe during redesign projects.

#5 TealeafTealeaf_IBM

Tealeaf is a tool to highlight points in the customer journey on a desktop or mobile site where visitors are abandoning a process - typically in a checkout or cart. It's an IBM product and has a heftier price tag than other products listed here. You can get demos on request, but there is no free trail. 

What makes it stand out?

Highlights potential problems which lead to revenue loss, so can be used to increase conversion and average order value.

Key features:

  • cxImpact captures a page-by-page, browser level recording of each customer session which is replayable and searchable
  • cxOverstat provides overlays to show visitor intent and action
  • cxView aggregates captured data to highlight most common issues and how they change through time.

The Smart Insights view

A different type of service to the others in this category which is described as highlighting ‘Customer Struggle’. The insights it generates can yield significant savings on abandoned transactions and application errors so it is a widely deployed tool in large, transactional businesses.

If you're interested in learning more about marketing tools, you can download our full guide to essential marketing tools, featuring 150 different tools and advice on what to use them for.

Author's avatar

By Robert Allen

I was the Editor of Smart Insights between 2015-2017. I managed the blog and you will find blog articles on a range of subjects- Marketing Technology trends and latest tech developments are a regular focus, as well as exploring key marketing concepts. You can get in touch with me on Twitter and connect with me on LinkedIn. The new Editor is Carolanne Mangles.

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