A website snapshot with a heat map thermal showing

Everything You Need to Know About Heatmaps

September 14, 2023

You have built your new website and promoted it across various market channels. You follow up with this by implementing analytics tools to monitor your site's performance, learning the number of visitors coming to your site, and measuring the bounce and conversion rates. You end up with tons of information but no way to fully understand it. Next, you can use a website heat map to help you understand your visitors' behavior better so you can focus on the metrics that matter.

Heatmaps are thought to have been invented in the 19th century and used to represent data in tables and matrices. Your website heatmap is simply a visual representation of how visitors interact with all of the elements on your site. They show which sections of your site get more clicks and hold your visitors' attention. Heatmaps are game-changers for marketers as they help them optimize their websites and blogs for better engagement and conversions. Heatmaps track user behaviors for monitoring and help marketers figure out what their visitors like, don't like, and what they're ignoring.

Why Use A Website Heatmap?

Find The Right Website Layout

Designing a website isn't an easy task. You or your designer probably experimented with many design elements before settling on a layout for your site you like. If you are still not 100% sure your format is perfect, heatmaps can help. They allow you to see where visitors click and where they don't. This information will help you design an effective site that keeps users coming back.

Pick A Single Goal

Using a CTA is excellent for marketing, but we can go overboard sometimes and give users too many options. With heatmaps, you can identify which CTA's get the maximum attention and make your primary page focus.

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How Do You Use A Website Heatmap?

Doing some quick research can show you various heatmap tools that can be used, including the popular HotJar. You can research and find the right one for your needs, and setting up your heatmap tool is easy, too! You start by adding a piece of code to the pages you want the heatmap to record, and you will see what your visitors see. Check out a step-by-step guide to setting up a heatmap using PageSense.

Heatmaps aren't the only handy tools you can use. Don't forget about scroll maps and attention maps to break through and understand the patterns of your website visitors to help give a smoother user experience that will increase your ROI.

What Is A Scroll Map?

A scroll map can show you how far your visitors scroll down a page. This map is a handy tool to help you decide where to place key website elements, including videos, hyperlinks, and CTAs.

Scenarios Where Scroll Maps Can Be Used:

Identify False Bottoms On Your Page

Visitor behaviour and scrolling patterns vary from page to page. One visitor might come to your blog and read the entire piece before taking action, while another might come to your homepage and leave without crossing below the fold.

By employing scroll maps, you can spot folds that get maximum traction and false bottoms that negatively impact your conversions. When you know your false bottom, visitors miss out on content by not scrolling till the end of the page; you can take steps to improve the content and bring more visibility to your pages.

Offer A Seamless Website Experience Across Devices

Always remember that your website looks different on different devices. It can appear as a two-fold page on a desktop, compared to a four-fold page on a mobile device. Scroll maps can show recordings of visitors across all devices, including mobile, desktop, and tablets. You can learn how far visitors read your site on various devices this way. You can use all this data to give your site cross-device compatibility, optimize your website, and facilitate a smooth navigation experience for your visitors.

What Is An Attention Map?

Attention maps are exactly what they seem. They tell you the average time a visitor spends on each section of your website. They help you determine which parts of your website people visit and which they leave or ignore.

An example of a heatmap highlighting a CTA button as a key area

How Can An Attention Map Improve Your Website Experience?

Improving The Content On A Page

What happens if a visitor lands on your contact page and spends more than five minutes there? Is it because an important contact detail might be missing, or perhaps our message isn't clear? When you see things like this happen, you know you have a problem to fix. Take some time to think about what details you would like to find on a contact page, what fields are required to fill out, and add what is important to you to learn about your visitor.

Help Visitors Make Important Decisions

Evaluate the information your heatmaps give you. If a visitor spends a lot of time on your pricing page and then goes to your customer's page, consider adding customer testimonials on your pricing page to aid your visitors' decision-making without navigating away.

How To Use Heatmaps

You can analyze the heatmap of each type of page on your website. This would be ideal if you feel like ensuring you aren't ineffectually using your time. To leverage your heatmaps, analyze the pages that influence your website's conversion rate the most: your home, landing pages, and all high-conversion blog posts.

Home Page

Your home page introduces your business, brand, products, and services. By constantly monitoring which sections visitors are looking at, you can gain a much better understanding of exactly where to place your home page's most important elements. These steps can help reduce your bounce rate while increasing your conversion rate.

Landing Pages

Do you know your landing pages matter? Landing pages are a final opportunity to convert visitors into leads/sales. Analyzing the behaviour of users on your landing pages will help you to implement an optimal design to allow the pages to generate major leads for your business.

High-Conversion Blog Posts

Any Call to Action (CTA) placement on blog posts can heavily influence their conversion rate. It can be helpful to know that CTA's placed near the beginning of the post, mainly following the introduction, tend to generate more leads than ones at the bottom of the post.

Wrapping Up

Knowing and understanding how your visitors interact with the structure and content of your site, including on-page elements, will allow you to build a successful strategy that gets users to stay on your site, read your posts, and convert more often.

We hope this article on heatmaps, along with our previous posts relating to analytics, SEO, and marketing have given you some strong ideas and plans to move your business forward. Contact the experts at Alley Kat Web Consulting today for your free needs assessment!