Co-founder of Disco and Copy Hackers, Lance Jones
Teaches You How to Analyze Visitor Feedback
(Part II – Watch Part I here)
Hello, again. It’s Lance Jones here of Copy Hackers. I’m an optimization consultant and this is the second part of my little two part series, “Do you understand your visitors?”
Remember the last time we talked about the different tools that you could use to try to get inside the heads of your website visitors and how important it is to understand how they behave on your site…
The better you understand their behavior, the better you can predict what they will do and you can build pages that are going to facilitate your visitors accomplishing their goals. Obviously, the better you can predict their behavior, the higher your conversion rate is going to go as well. This all ties together quite nicely.
You recall that I asked you to add the Mouseflow code to a single page on your site and to probably take advantage of the free plan, which would allow you to get up to 100 screen recordings. Hopefully, you are at that point now and have got those 100 recordings.
I’m going to take you through a few recordings that I have made on a landing page. There are some other elements of Mouseflow that I talked about last time such as heat maps, scroll maps, and movement maps. Those are great tools once you are over a certain number of recordings. Those are very quantitative in nature, so numbers matter there. With only 100 recordings, you’re not going to be able to read in too much to your heat maps or scroll maps. We are going to spend the bulk of this time today on the recordings themselves and looking at some recordings and figuring out what you can learn by watching how people are interacting with your pages.
Here we have a landing page. The company is Precision Nutrition that’s a company I have worked with in the past. They are gracious enough to let me install Mouseflow on their site. We put the code on just the one page to keep things really simple, just as you have done. I just want to walk you through this landing page just to get a sense for what we have got on it. When we are looking at the videos, it will make a lot more sense to you if you are familiar with the page itself.
This is a page that is, most people come to via the Precision Nutrition homepage. It’s an opt-in page for a free video course. We have got of course there headline and they’ve got a decent visual hierarchy with their copy, making the most salient point right up top here.
We have also got a sidebar on the site as you can see. We have got a little bit about Dr. Berardi. As you scroll down, there’s a quite a lot of copy. They are trying to hit on all the things that would convince people to sign up for a free five-day course. They’ve got some social proof. They’ve also got some visual testimonials, peoples’ before and after shots. This is a page that is focused on men. There is an equivalent page for women, but we’re just going to look at the men’s page today. As you go down the page, we get into a little bit more about what’s in the videos, more of the visual testimonials on the right. They continue all the way down the page. It is a bit of a scroller, not too crazy, but you get down to the bottom of the page and there is a sign-up form for this free five-day fat loss course.
That’s of course the goal of the page is to get people to enter their name and their email address and then submit. Immediately following that, the person would get day one video course. Each video is about five minutes and every day from that point on you would receive the additional four videos. We want to see how people [inaudible 0:03:07] through Mouseflow.
Now you know a little bit about the page that we’re trying to optimize and you’ll see the Mouseflow, the main dashboard here. The first place we will go from here is into analyze pages. View recordings is just going to show you the entire list of recordings that have got. Analyze pages breaks things up a little bit and you can view a couple of the additional features provided by Mouseflow. We have drilled down into the Precision Nutrition session and we have got a few pages listed here where there are some videos recorded. The only one we really care about is this first one, fat loss for men. That’s the landing page that I walked you through. There is some high-level information or data about the page that we can take a quick look at.
First of all, as we have got 235 recordings for this page and we have an average visit time of 5 minutes 45 seconds and based on the amount of copy on that page, it is probably not surprising. Right next to that is an interaction time, so it is the average interaction time of 53 seconds in this case. That really means the amount of time that people were engaging with the page. There was movement occurring. So scrolling [inaudible 0:04:12] any kind of filling in a form, clicking on images, any of those types of interactions, the elapsed time is accumulated and for this particular page, we’ve got a time of 53 seconds. There were 258 clicks on the page, which suggests that something was happening, we are not sure quite yet what that was.
The other column that I pay attention to here is the scroll reach and this indicates that the average person made it three quarters of the way down the page. When you look at where the opt-in form is on that landing page, it is right around that point. That also is fairly intuitive. There is mouse movement heat map, which shows where people were kind of hovering and I would encourage you to take look at that. We won’t spend any time on that today. Then finally there is scroll map that shows you how far people went down the page. Overall, this is something I would look at just to get a feel for, a very high level what people did. Does it make sense to you on the page that you’re looking at?
I’m going to click through the fat loss for men link and we are going to get a more detailed view. Here is essentially the same type of information that we saw on the previous page, but I am going to keep going here and click right through to view recordings.
This shows us the full list of recordings that you’ve got for your landing page. We have got how long ago these recordings took place, what country people are from. The URL of course should all be the same for your video. We have got the duration for each of these visitors. The interaction time, remember that’s the total amount, like people actively engaged with the page. We have got the scroll height that people achieved for this. We have got the browser and operating system here next to that and on these tags, you can add your own tags to this site and there is a lot more involved in doing that, but Mouseflow does have some built-in tags and so in time, we have people interacting with the form or submitting a form. It tracks those and that’s very important for the page that we are looking at, so it’s a helpful way to figure out what people did or didn’t do on the page using those standard tags in Mouseflow. They are going to feed into the videos that we’re going to look at.
Here is the first video we’re going to look at. It is 1 minute 8 seconds up in the top left corner, there is a pause and a play button. I am going to hit play in just one second and I will let this run and I will just kind of do a voice over for what I am observing for this particular visitor on the page. You can see the mouse movement in the center and the person scrolling down to get a feel for that headline and subhead section. Pauses generally indicate that the content is being read or consumed. You’ll get a feel for that as you watch your own videos and now there is a skipping forward to the next section of content.
So this person is absorbing some of this initial content on the page. It’s hard to tell if they are looking at the stuff on the side, maybe we’ll see some mouse clicks on the images as they scroll down, but for now, they’re just consuming. You can also see by the placement of their cursor that they are probably looking at the copy section and less so at the information on the right, but now they are really starting to move quickly. They skipped over the last half of the content and straight through to the opt-in form. You can see now that they are hovering over some images, maybe this person [inaudible 0:07:35] resonates with the person reading the page. They kind of hovered over that.
Now, they are clicking through on the form and they are going to submit their name to Precision Nutrition.
Okay, that’s the first video. There were a few things that we noticed there, primarily the fact that there was a lot of content skipped over. There wasn’t a lot of interaction with the images on the right. I mean they could have been glanced at, we don’t know for sure, but there wasn’t any interaction with it. There was some time spent at the top of the page, very little time spent at the bottom half of the copy on this page.
Let’s take a look at the second video. We are on the next video now and this is a lot short at 32 seconds. I am just going to press play and we’ll watch how this person interacted with the page. Immediately moving through to the top copy and really bypassing everything else. This person is probably quite motivated to just get the course and they had to do little bit of work to get down to the opt-in form. Really, no interaction at all with the stuff on the right-hand sidebar and they are submitting their name and email address as they close it out. There is one more behavior here that I am observing, they whipped up to the top of the page again, scrolled right back down, and they are submitting the form there. That’s the second video. Again, a lot of content that they didn’t consume and not a lot of interaction with that right-hand sidebar.
Let’s take a look at the third and final video. Here we are on the third and final video. This one is only 30 seconds. This is somebody who did not submit the form. We want to understand the behavior of people who accomplish the thing that we desire on the page and people who skip right over the call to action or whatever it is we wanted them to do. This is an example of the latter. Let me press play and this person is taking a quick look here. Again, this is going to move by pretty quickly, only 30 seconds. They are definitely reading the initial content, scrolling through.
Again, watch the position of their mouse, the curser, as they are probably looking at the copy. They are continuing to move down. They are not going to get too much farther here and they scrolled back up and that’s it. They didn’t even get down to really the bottom third of the page. They did not see the opt-in box for signing up for the course. It appears as though they were engaged though because they didn’t just shoot right through the copy. They did spend a little bit of time reading. Whatever they were reading might not have resonated. It might have been too much work for them, who knows, but it is clear that to me by looking at videos and similar ones to this that the opt-in box is probably too far down the page and so what we will recommend to Precision Nutrition is let’s create a test and if you have the ability to run a test on the change, that’s awesome. Otherwise, you could just make the optimization based on your themes that you are seeing in these videos.
We are going to recommend that they cut out a lot of the copy and make this into a true squeeze page, so people don’t have to read as much and work their way down the page. The opt-in box is going to be visible immediately to people who come here and those are the things that I would feel confident in recommending to Precision Nutrition based on the videos that I have looked at.
Let me sum up some of the things that you can do when you are reviewing your videos. So which videos should you take a look at? You have got 100 to choose from or maybe more. This takes a little bit of time to get a sense for. I would scan up and down that list of videos and take a look at where the average time is situated. On the overview page for Mouseflow, the average time was about 5 minutes 45 seconds for our landing page, but when you look through the list of videos, there were some real outliers. Some of them were over an hour, so somebody got up from their computer to do something and came back, all the while that time was clicking off. That wasn’t a representative visit at all and it pulled up the average. I would take a look up at that full list of videos and see where the sweet spot is and where the outliers are. I would take a look at some of the outliers, maybe not the ones that are 15, 20, or 30 minutes, because it is likely that people weren’t engaging with the page for that long, but check some of the longer visits and check some of the really short visits and see what is going on there.
Remember to take some notes about what you are seeing. You definitely want to spend the bulk of your time on what you call a typical visit. So, again find that sweet spot and really take a look at those videos. Spend your time in the area where the most common behavior occurred, which is time spent on the page for example.
If you did happen to choose a page that is a landing page with an opt-in form or perhaps cart or checkout, those types of things should be showing up on Mouseflow under that tag column.
Take a look at the videos where the desired action occurred. You really want to find out the common themes. Watch as many of those videos as you can and identify and note those common themes. The same thing goes for the people that did not take the desired action. You want to try to understand what those people had in common. There might be obstacles that you can observe happening or that people are encountering that you want to eliminate if possible as you optimize the page.
Let’s get into giving you some tips on what you can do once you are in the videos. What types of behaviors indicate that you’ve got an optimization opportunity? Pausing is really a helpful behavior. When people are pausing, you take a look at where their cursor is situated, but again this probably means that content is being consumed, so it’s of interest to people. You may find that people are pausing too long when you are watching a video, which could indicate some confusion, but I wouldn’t jump to that conclusion unless you have seen that pattern repeated on multiple videos. Pausing is generally a good thing.
Are people scrolling far enough to take in all of your desired content and do they take the desired action. If for example, in the Precision Nutrition landing page, there were a lot of people who didn’t get that far down the page. We’ve got to move that opt-in form up on the page. Are you seeing that sort of behavior on your page? Are people getting far enough down? That could indicate that you need to do some optimization around the fold.
Why do people skip over content? We saw a lot of that behavior just in those three videos and I saw a lot more being into the other 30 or 40 that I’ve watched. As people are skipping over the content, they are just not able to absorb those words as they are moving down so quickly. It is possible that you may need to add some cross heads on your page to make the salient point jump out. It could be that there is just too much information. As marketers, we tend to want to put a lot more information on the page than people probably need. You really need to scrutinize and be a little ruthless about the content you got on the page. If you are seeing people skip over large sections of it, consider really reducing, summarizing that copy out. John [inaudible 0:15:13] is going to hate me for using the word summarizing, but we are pulling it out altogether.
Are people clicking where you would expect and yet you could get this from the click map, but really you want to see the behavior before and after the click, which the heat map can’t tell you. Are people doing what you would expect? On the Precision Nutrition landing page, we weren’t seeing people click on any of the images to expand those on the right, so it’s probably not even necessary to have an expand option there. It could also mean that we are busy reading and not really paying attention to those images on the right. We might want to do something different where we show some images at the very top of the page and not have that two-column split. Look for where people are clicking and where they are not clicking. Where the mouse hovers, I mentioned this already. It could indicate engagement. It could indicate confusion. The more videos you watch, the better you will get a feel for what people are doing with the different sections of copy that you have on your page. Those are some of the key behaviors that I look for that would suggest a strong opportunity to optimize the page.
Let’s move on to your assignment. Probably, guessed it, you got off pretty lightly last time with just putting the Mouseflow code on your pages to collect the videos. This time, you are going to watch some videos and you may have already done that. Watching the videos is key here obviously. I would encourage you to watch as many as possible. You could grab your favorite beverage and a snack and sit down and watch videos. I wouldn’t try to watch any more than 20 or 30 at a time because your head will probably start to spin as you are reviewing them.
Take as much time as you need to get through videos, but the more you watch, the more you’ll learn.
Remember that you are looking for behaviors that are unexpected. You can definitely note the things that you do expect, the behaviors that you hope would occur and sort of giving yourself a checkmark on those things. But when we are talking about optimizing the page, removing obstacles that sort of thing, you want to make to make special notes about any unexpected behavior that your visitors are engaging in. Then you are going to take a look at any themes that you saw, you are going to look at the magnitude of the issue and if you see the same issue recurring over and over and over, assign that a higher level of impact and I want you to make one change to your landing page based on the behaviors that you have observed. If you have the ability to test the change, like we’ll do for Precision Nutrition that’s fantastic, but if you don’t that’s okay too. You are going to have a confidence established by watching and gathering all of this qualitative data, so go ahead and make that one change to your page.
Just a couple of final notes. It really does take a little bit of time to get the hang of this. You may watch the first five videos and decide that you are not really understanding, just push through that and continue to watch videos and you will start to see commonality across the videos. Definitely give yourself the time and be patient with yourself on this activity and of course the more videos you watch, the more you are going to learn and I hope you will do more than just 100 videos. Put the code on a different page or potentially sign-up for that lite plan on Mouseflow where you can gather 1000s of videos across all of your pages and you can really get good at this quite quickly.
Thanks very much for listening. Have a great day!