The term “heuristic analysis” is familiar even to those who are very far from deep knowledge in the field of computer security. Let's briefly describe this principle since its scope of application today is much wider than that of antivirus software.
Using the heuristic approach, antivirus does not check the signature but the behavior of a particular program and compares it with a list of actions typical for viruses. For example, an attempt to change system directories, to add any record to the system registry, or delete any file without a direct visitor's command will be regarded by heuristic analysis as viral activity and stopped.
In other methods of analyzing programs or web resources, specially invited ordinary visitors are used for assessing the effectiveness. As for a heuristic assessment, it should be conducted by qualified experts.
The key questions in these lists of records website visitors.
Internationally renowned UX design authorities Matt Isherwood, Rolf Molich, and Jakob Nielsen have come up with lists of rules that professional testers follow when analyzing the UX of website and landing page design.
Clarity of the current state of a system or site
The design should provide the visitor with the ability at any time to understand where he is, what actions brought him to this place, and what the result of his next steps will be.
An example of the implementation of this principle: the icon “You are here now” on the maps of stores or other public places.
The system must correspond to the real world
To navigate the site, words that are understandable to an untrained visitor should be used and not the professional jargon of programmers or experts in any other field.
For instance, sections in an online store are named the same as in a regular supermarket and not as they are called in the code.
User control over the consequences of his actions and the freedom to cancel them
A visitor can commit some action by mistake or due to a misunderstanding of the cause-and-effect relationship. He should be able to completely undo his actions and roll back to the starting point without consequences.
For example, if you accidentally add the same item to the cart twice, the e-store interface should explicitly warn you about this and not deduct a double price from your account without your consent.
Following familiar patterns
If on the nine sites out of 10 registration forms, the buttons for subscribing to newsletters and the shopping cart are located in similar places and act on a similar principle, this can be considered a certain standard recorded in a visitor’s subconsciousness. If the tenth site's designers decide to be original and place the same elements specially, forcing the visitor to spend time and effort searching for them, most likely, this site will merely lose the client.
Jakob Nielsen formulated this principle as follows: “visitors spend most of their time not on your site, but other resources. Therefore, when they come to you, they want everything to work the same way it came from.”
What do you prefer: to read a beautifully designed message that you made a mistake and instructions on how to fix it? Or, maybe, you’d like to know that even if you make a mistake through ignorance or inattention, the system will recognize the error in time, fix it and perform the operation you need? I think the answer is obvious.
Imagine a dividing line on a highway. Definitely, you shouldn't cross it. However, a low concrete barrier, just in case, prevents you from entering the oncoming lane.
Not to remember, but to recognize
There is no need to turn your site navigation into a “Find the item” quest. You shouldn't run a test for the amount of mental RAM for a visitor who fills out a form on your page. Everything a visitor to your website needs to surf successfully should be in front of his eyes or within direct reach.
The main menu should be placed at the distance of the mouse movement to the edge of the screen. To hide it behind a dozen clicks on the “back” the arrow on the way to the main page — is a crime against usability.
Customization for each client
A basic set of required elements must be present on any site. All these buttons, banners, arrows, and shapes should be understandable even for the person who turned on the computer for the first time today, and your site is the first thing he saw. However, the experienced visitor needs to be able to customize the site for himself. Additional menus recorded as turned by default in his profile will be a good reward for an experienced internet surfer.
A convenient route for a tourist is laid out on Google map. But locals can take a shortcut through the courtyards.
Sniper Design: one shoot — one hit
The heuristic evaluation of UX design assumes that each of its elements carries not only an aesthetic but also a functional load. A jam of pretty bells and sparkling whistles scatters attention and takes the visitor away from the main purpose of visiting the site.
Have you seen ancient swords in museums? Their austere beauty lies in their embodied functionality. While richly ornamented samples of ceremonial weapons sometimes make it difficult to pick them up reliably.
The error message should be as clear as possible and contain practical instructions on how to fix it
After making a mistake and causing a crash, you would rather see a clear explanation of exactly what you did wrong and a summary of how to restore the status quo.
Road signs indicate the need for a turn or warn of danger, and do not refer to a paragraph or a certain record from the traffic rules instead.
Help and additional documentation
Ideal for any website — the design such intuitive and visitor-friendly that there is no need for any additional explanations. However, if the certificate is necessary, it should be presented in the most accessible language, understandable to a person without special training.
Signs and announcements at airports and train stations are as clear as possible. But if you need more information, you can get it from the help desk in an understandable form.
The tools that fully provide the ability to analyze any website based on the above principles are fully represented on the Plerdy platform.
- Website funnel optimization and conversion growth
- The increased average revenue per visitor
- Lower cart abandonment rate
- Decreased bounce rate
- Lower churn rate and increased customer lifetime value
- Increased customer retention rate
At the same time, the use of these tools guarantees an increase in the conversion of your website and allows you to save your marketers, analysts, SEO, and UX design specialists from 10 to 30 hours per month, delivering them from unnecessary manual recordings.
The main approaches that Plerdy uses are Heatmap and Session Replay.
A unique tool from the Plerdy arsenal allows you to track a visitor's movement around the site from the first click to the exit.
Heatmaps record where the visitor lingered, which spot or element he ignored, where he tried to click on a picture or a word, but it turned out to be unclickable. And the most important thing is that heatmaps give a clear idea of when and where the visitor left the site.
The analysis of such records shows how to correct the UX interface and guide the visitor from the first click on your header to the final checkout.
Using heatmaps to optimize your website allows you to achieve the necessary results in the shortest possible time:
- 99% data accuracy
- Clicks on dynamic elements
- Quick UX analysis
- Recording data from Single Page Application Measurement (SPAs)
- The records of real-time website tracking
- 10%+ growth of micro and macro conversions
Another tool from Plerdy that allows you to see the site through the visitor’s eyes. Session Replay records all visitor actions, clearly recording the time spent at every point on the site, every visitor's mouse click, movement, scrolling, etc. Analysts and SEO specialists can repeatedly review the records and see what attracts the visitor and causes rejection. This approach is a direct path to converting a visitor into a customer.
Session Replay provides in recorded form deep and detailed visitor segmentation. In particular, the analyst receives information:
- by the type of device from which the visitor logs to the site
- by visitor geolocation
- by typical behavior.
Session Replay independently divides visitors into groups according to specified criteria, records their activity, and analyzes each group separately.
A comprehensive analysis of the effectiveness of a website by recording visitor actions allows you to get the following benefits:
- Quick configuration
- Multiple filters
- More accurate data
- Ability to record all pages
- Recording data from SPA sites
- Guest access to specific videos
The tools that make up the comprehensive Plerdy platform make website conversion grow in several ways simultaneously. In addition, increasing the efficiency of sales through landing pages, in general, such an approach significantly affects the development of the business, its structure, and priorities.
Record Website Visitors Help Business
In the context of priorities, the choice of certain filters for recording visitor actions on the site and fine-tuning the recording process itself is determined by the tasks that the analyst sets for himself.
The starting point for such a task is the data obtained using Google Analytics or similar services. These numbers show the percentage of conversions, the number of refusals from registrations or purchases, etc. However, for an accurate and scientifically sound interpretation of these results, a carefully configured record of the entire period of the visitor's stay on the site is necessary. Moreover, these conclusions are the only way for the successful practical application of the findings.
The recording of the visitor's actions are supposed to solve the two main tasks. They sound almost the same, but for real, they work in two different directions.
- Improving the leading indicators of the website.
- Optimization of the essential pages of the website.
In the first case, we mainly discuss a comprehensive analysis of visitors’ interaction with UX design elements on your site. It concerns the content, ease of filling out forms, their general design, the time required for registration, and ease of correction of errors. We study the elements that pushed the visitor to leave your site to reduce bounce rate prematurely.
In this case, the analysis of the records allows a series of behavioral experiments to be carried out, correcting the detected errors. The ultimate measure of success is expanding your conversion funnel.
The second approach involves an in-depth study of the interaction of such pages on your website as:
- Product page
- Checkout page
- Landing page
General resource page. The resource page can contain reviews of the products presented on your site, expert recommendations, operating instructions, drivers, blogs, etc.
The main goal of this in-depth study of the site by recording visitor actions is to study the ease of navigation, the readability of texts, the smoothness of transitions, the general relevance and availability of information.
10 Problems Solved by Recording Website Visitors
As mentioned many times, Plerdy offers a comprehensive approach to solving your site's under-conversion issues. Since these problems arise as a direct consequence of a lack of visitor satisfaction with your resource, Plerdy's tools for recording visitors’ reactions can be seen as a way to remove all barriers from the buyer's journey. What are these obstacles? We list just a few of them:
- The lack of effectiveness of the call to action.
- Refusal to purchase goods put in the basket.
- Difficulty communicating with the support team.
- Delays in responding to interactive activities.
- Lack of intuitive design on the entire site or individual pages.
- Insufficiently fast adaptation of the visitor to the interface and logistics of the site.
- Blurring of the target audience when positioning the product.
- Vague product or money return guarantees.
- Insufficient product description.
- Lack of visitor comments.
Recording Website Visitors importance
The uniqueness of such a tool as recording visitor sessions is that you can see the visitor's actions and feel his mood. Looking through the entry several times, you can see a lot:
- where he obviously scrolls the page in annoyance in search of the necessary button or section;
- where he stops to read the schedule carefully;
- where he enters information into the form fields several times, bumping into the same error.
Thus, you can collect “disappointment statistics” and, conversely, mark successful design, content, and psychological approaches.
Re-watching the records and exploring the nuances of the visitor behavior while sending products to the cart, you can understand why exactly he is doing this. Perhaps, in this manner, he is simply sorting out future purchases. Maybe this is a convenient way for him to compare the price, Or, quite possibly, he intends to buy it right away, but the rejection occurs at the checkout level.
A comprehensive study of visitor behavior on your website is the real science that is based, among other things, on heuristic methods. The tools intended to record visitors’ behavior enriches you with priceless knowledge. The knowledge of various UX and UI interface research techniques, heatmap metrics, repetition of visitor session recordings, and experimenting with different interface options are all essential ingredients on the path to the highest conversions for your website.