A few weeks ago we took a look at the free tools available for conducting usability testing. While free is always welcome, using free products or services can have limitations. When looking at paid options, however, making a decision can be complicated. Recently we had the opportunity to talk with Clicktale, one of the major players in the usability game, about their product, its features and how it can help companies improve their site’s design and user experience.
Every Click Tells a Story
When Clicktale began in 2006 by Dr. Tal Schwartz (CEO) and Arik Yavilevich (CTO) in Israel it offered basic usability capabilities like visual heat maps and behavioral reports. Over the past year they’ve added new and advanced capabilities that don’t just show you how users move from page to page, but what happens within each page. In other words, just like their name suggests, ever click has a tale to tell.
Clicktale offers three types of analytics: behavior, conversion and marketing. Shmuli Goldberg, director of marketing and communications at Clicktale walked us through a demo of the several different types of products and services companies have to choose from to help them better understand how exactly consumers use their site and the types of things that keep them from being customers.
Before companies can begin to understand their users’ behaviors, they have to see them in action. Using Clicktale’s video recording, clients can see their site through the eyes of their visitors, understand how they use the site, what they’re trying to achieve and where they encounter errors.
While videos can show a lot, it takes a lot of time to watch hours and hours of videos to try to see what users are doing and make appropriate changes based on behaviors seen.
While Clicktale offers companies all the video reports, it makes synthesizing the information all that much easier by providing a summary of user behavior highlights and advanced filtering that lets you find specific videos of customers who complete or drop out of any pre-defined or post-defined business process, scenario or funnel.
In addition, Clicktale offers four kinds of “high precision” heat maps based on a user's mouse movements, clicks, attention and scroll reach. With heat maps, clients can see which content, elements and layout increase conversion rates, what customers see just before they decide to purchase a product and how many people miss a site’s call to action buttons.
An example of a page overlayed with a mouse click heat map. Areas that are frequently moused over are yellow, orange and red with the light blue color indicating "cool" areas.
Of course there has been much research about eye tracking and heat maps, but that doesn’t mean that all users display the same behavior, nor does it mean that a company’s website is effectively designed to navigate a user in a manner that leads the user to a desired action.
As well, data for every version of site page are archived, making it easy to conduct A/B testing of multiple page elements.
Seeing what your user sees is only part of web usability. Converting behavior into action is another. Clicktale offers a suite of analytics tools aimed at improving the performance of a site’s online forms. Discover which fields take too long to fill, are most frequently left blank and cause your visitors to leave.
Five individual reports reveal a site’s online form's step-by-step conversion funnel, showing how many visitors came to the form, interacted with the form, tried but failed to submit it, and how many successfully completed it. Information discovered can help companies solve costly design problems, from poor page design or problematic form design.
Form Analytics helps to increase online forms conversion rates by optimizing forms to minimize visitors’ frustration and preempt any difficulties that they may have.