June 12th, 2012
Conversion Rate Optimization
Today’s landing page optimization specialist needs to be an expert tracker. Not the hunting-through-the-woods-trailing-an-animal type; rather, a person capable of gathering an analyzing click tracking, mouse tracking, eye tracking, and heat map data. It’s through this information that CROs are able to definitively determine the strengths and weaknesses of a landing page.
Landing page testing is not just about running A/B tests and making decisions based on these results. An ideal approach before testing is to collect user interaction data. This comes in the forms mentioned above–heat mapping, click tracking, mouse tracking, eye tracking, and scroll tracking. Here’s a glance at how each works and the benefit they provide to optimizing landing pages.
A heat map provides a color-coded system to differentiate the popularity between elements of a webpage. All of the CRO tracking methods covered here spit out results in the form of heat maps with a typical color scale ranging from red (most popular) to blue (least popular) to graphically represent results.
Click tracking monitors where people click on a page, showing the popularity and effectiveness of links, images and calls to action. Just as important, it also shows which non-clickable elements are getting action. When situations like this arise it’s necessary to determine how to take advantage of people’s intentions and move them deeper into your site.
Eye tracking data provides an analysis of the hotspots and eye movement progression people make when viewing a landing page. This useful tool helps determine if people are missing important elements on a landing page. The flip side is that it also illustrates successes on the page which should be duplicated across similar pages.
Similar to eye tracking, mouse tracking details the common trails people take with their mice. Analyzing these patterns will show popular paths people take on their way to arriving at their click destination. Other information provided along with the mouse tracking heat map includes mouse hover order and hover time above clickable elements.
Scroll tracking depicts the distance down a page your visitors go. It involves a red to blue gradient overlay covering the length of a landing page and quickly shows how much of your landing page content people see.
A common misconception people have about their landing pages and website as a whole is that visitors scroll through the entire page. But after I reviewed scroll tracking data for websites in a variety of different industries and service lines it quickly became clear that for most, less than 25 percent of visitors scroll to the bottom of a page! Web readers don’t have a ton of patience.
With this information you should be armed with more than enough information to make even a few small tweaks to your landing pages. Because users are constantly changing their behavior online, landing page tracking and optimization should be a constant effort.
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