5 Ways to Use Hotjar for Conversion Rate Optimization
By Bob Ruffolo
Hotjar is one of the newest, and most powerful, conversion rate optimization (CRO) tools available to marketers right now.
It combines features such as A/B testing, multivariate testing, heat mapping, scroll mapping, web analytics, funnel analysis, mobile analytics, user testing, expert feedback, and concept testing all into one easy-to-use and affordable software.
After a successful launch in 2015, Hotjar has quickly become a favorite CRO tool for marketers and there really isn’t another platform with this level of functionality at the same price point.
If you’re looking to focus heavily on CRO for your business, Hotjar is the perfect solution.
The Key Concepts of CRO With Hotjar
Before optimizing conversions using Hotjar, you’ll want to familiarize yourself with the following terms:
- Drivers – The things that attract visitors to your website. Drivers are problems people want to solve, goals they want to accomplish, products they want to purchase, a recommendation, or anything else that drives people to search for answers online.
- Barriers – The things that prevent conversions or cause people to leave your website. Barriers could be slow loading time, poor copy, pricing that exceeds perceived value, or anything else that gets in the way of a prospect converting.
- Hooks – The things that persuade prospects to convert. Hooks can be a specific benefit or feature, perceived status, social proof, or anything else that hooked a prospect to make the final decision to convert.
CRO is highly strategic and understanding these three concepts is vital to your success. All of the tools within Hotjar exist to help you define them on your website.
By understanding what drives people to your website, you can double-down on those factors to further convince prospects that they are in the right place, while identifying barriers allows you to correct and eliminate them, making it as easy as possible for a prospect to convert.
Finally, identifying the hooks helps you figure out why people are really buying your product or service, which is the most valuable marketing information you can have.
5 Ways to Optimize Conversion Rates With Hotjar
There are MANY ways to use Hotjar for CRO, but these are the five action steps recommended by Hotjar based on the results achieved on thousands of websites across a wide variety of industries.
1. Set Up a Heat Map on Pages with High Traffic and Bounce Rates
A page that has high traffic shows that you have key drivers sending people to your website and those high traffic pages often have the biggest revenue-earning potential. High bounce rates on these pages, however, indicate significant barriers and/or a lack of strong hooks.
Setting up a Heat map allows you to see which elements on your page get the most engagement from users, where people are clicking, how far they are scrolling, and other information that helps you pinpoint the causes of your bounce rates.
2. Use Feedback Polls to Identify Drivers on Landing Pages with High Traffic
The easiest way to deliver value and create compelling hooks is to identify the drivers that bring traffic to your website in the first place.
With Hotjar, you can create a Feedback Poll that pops up after five seconds and asks an open-ended question.
Then you can have Hotjar create a wordmap to help you visualize those answers, in addition to going through and reading the answers, as well.
3. Send a Hotjar User Survey via Email
Your existing customers are your best resource for CRO because your business exists to serve paying customers, not just website visitors.
Unlike prospects and leads, your customers have the best, most accurate insight into your company’s drivers, barriers, and hooks.
Hotjar suggests creating a survey with open-ended questions, such as the following:
- "What led you to look for [service / product type]? Explain in as much detail as possible how it will make your life easier / better.”
- "What nearly stopped you from using us? List as many items as you can think of"
- "What persuaded you to [action e.g. buy / signup]. List as many items you can think of."
- "What could we have done to make your decision easier?"
You don’t want to ask too many questions or people will be less likely to complete the survey.
A couple of easy tricks to increase the response rate is to add an incentive, such as providing a free gift for a random participant, as well as setting a short deadline for the survey to be completed to be eligible for the prize.
4. Identify the Barriers in Your Funnel
Funnels are pathways on your website that lead prospects towards conversion, whether that be converting to a lead or converting to a customer.
A funnel might look like:
- Homepage > Product Page > Checkout Page > Thank You Page
- Blog Post > Offer Landing Page > Thank You Page
Sometimes funnels only have a few stages and other times they have many. The longer your funnel is, the more difficult it is to get people all the way to the end.
A barrier in your funnel is a page where the most people tend to drop-out of the funnel, meaning they don’t continue on to the next stage. Hotjar allows you track your funnel performance to find barriers so you know which page(s) needs your immediate attention.
5. Add a Feedback Poll to Barrier Pages
Once you’ve identified barriers in your funnel, you want to start figuring out what exactly makes people leave. The quickest way is to get feedback from users with a Feedback Poll.
You can set your Feedback Poll to appear on exit or whenever a user scrolls halfway through a page, as well as by a timer. If people are leaving quickly, you probably want to have it appear as they exit the page.
Hotjar suggests the following questions as starting templates:
- "Quick Question – if you decided not to [action e.g. signup / buy] today what stopped you?"
- "Quick Question – What is your biggest concern or fear about using us?"
- "Quick Question – What is missing on this page?"
This should get some quick, actionable feedback for you to use to remove the Barriers on this page and keep users moving down your funnel.
The Top 50 Conversion Rate Optimization Tools
The content above was an excerpt of our new guide, "The Inbound Master's Guide to Conversion Rate Optimization" To learn more about CRO, testing, and the top CRO tools, get your free copy of the full guide by clicking "Get it Now" below.
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