Heat mapping software can help you boost the conversion rate on a sales page, landing page, or product description must faster and with far greater results than website split testing or re-writing the content from scratch. In fact, conversion rate optimization experts absolutely rely on heat mapping tools to help them quickly assess websites and isolate the design and copywriting problems on the main conversion-oriented content. But what exactly is heat mapping software and why is it the key to optimizing landing pages, sales pages, and other action-prompting web content?
Heat Mapping Software Overview
Heat maps are generated from algorithms that track visitor mouse or scrolling actions from visitors as they scroll through a website–yes, even on mobile devices. The higher quality heat mapping applications (like Crazy Egg or Clicktale) can track a wide range of variables that are vital to successfully and quickly optimizing a website, including:
This shows you the exact scrolling patterns of all visitors on one aggregated heat map. This is great for seeing overall patterns and seeing which sales tools are being viewed and which visitors are skipping past.
As you can see in the image above, this function let’s you see the exact number of visitors that click on any given CTA (buy now/add to cart button, sign up boxes, and any link on a piece of content)
This metric tells you the average time each visitor hovered over any given testimonial, value proposition, or any primary sales tool.
Actual Visitor Recordings
Yes, you can actually watch individual visitors interact with your website and see exactly where they are going and what they are engaging with using real time recordings.
Sounds great but how exactly do these heat mapping software features actually help you boost conversions rates on your sales pages and other action-prompting content?
1. Heat Mapping Software Identifies Weak or Ineffective CTA’s
The CTA’s (or calls-to-action) are basically the buy now or sign up now buttons on your conversion-oriented content. Now the more people that click on these vital links, the more sales or conversions a website generates. But how do you know if a CTA is working or not especially when the same CTA appears on other pages? After all, Google Analytics and similar programs will tell you how many visitors are reaching your shopping cart or sign up page, but you need to set up complex funnels to do so and for every possible path a visitor might take to that shopping cart or sign up page. Plus, for the actual sales or landing page itself: Google Analytics won’t tell you the click-thru rate for each CTA. And for pages with the same CTA appearing in different formats or in different positions on the sales page, there is simply no way to track the effectiveness (or click thru rate) for each CTA other than heat mapping software.
Simply look at the image above with all the little colored dots all over it. Those dots represent every place a visitor actually clicked their mouse or tapped their tablet/cell phone. Now for more complex product descriptions with multiple CTA’s and links to related products/services, this data can quickly find which links/CTA’s are working and which are failing to convert. So instead of constantly split testing and never knowing what was working and what wasn’t, heat mapping software quickly identifies the weak CTA’s that need work and/or removed.
2. Heat Maps Quickly Isolate Weak Copywriting Tools
The average hover time is a vital tool for CRO experts because it reveals the weak copywriting tools and design elements that visitors are just skimming over. In the heat mapping screenshot to the right here, you can see areas of yello, red, green, and blue.
The red and yellow areas indicate a long hover time with yellow being areas of most interest and red still showing strong interest in the content. So basically, they are actually reading and engaging with the content and the longer you keep visitors on the page and the more sales tools they actually read, the higher conversion rate will be.
The green and blue areas, however, indicate low average hover times or weak engagement with the content. These are the sales tools that need optimized and fixed while the other content can be left as is–at least until the weak tools are fixed.
The average hover time and the aggregate heat maps it helps generate drastically reduce optimization time and cost while boosting performance for several reasons, including:
- Helps You Keep What is Working Instead of Starting Over from Scratch
- Quickly Identifies the Weak Sales Tools that Visitors Are Not Engaging With
- Far More Efficient than Blind Split Testing or Guessing What is Wrong
However, conversion rate optimization software with hover times have one drawback: You really need a fairly large sample size of at least 500 visitors to provide reliable results. Otherwise, the results tend to skew towards overestimating the strength of sales tools.
3. Heat Maps Isolate Poor Converting Traffic Sources
Again, if you look at the image at the top of this post, you will see a column on the left hand side with a number of traffic sources like Bing, SearchYahoo, etc. Well, each colored dot corresponds with a different traffic source. That means that advanced heat mapping software like Crazy Egg can actually show you the click-thru rates for each primary traffic source for all the CTA’s and links on any page being tracked. In some cases, these heat maps will indicate that a separate landing page may be required for some paid traffic sources to improve their conversion rate.
Concluding Thoughts on Heat Mapping Software
Although deceptively simple-looking, heat mapping tools can literally cut optimization times by 50% and boost results by up to 100% or more compared with website split testing, the traditional optimization tool. Aside from requiring large samples of web traffic to obtain reliable data, there really is no drawback or downside to heat mapping software. Some applications like Crazy Egg are actually quite reasonably priced while other platforms may require a very hefty up-front investment, such as Clicktale.
But if you want to see great conversion rate optimization benefits, then investing in high quality heat mapping software is the surest and fastest path to success and significantly higher online sales or qualified leads.