Customer satisfaction is one of the most critical business success metrics, but it’s often overlooked. Many companies rely on massive marketing budgets to raise brand awareness and get media attention, but no advertising campaigns can make up for the lack of a great user experience in your product.
Therefore, it’s in your best interest to create an incredible experience for your customers. That’s where behavioral analytics can help you achieve the best results. Read on to learn how to use behavioral insights to improve the UX.
What is behavioral analytics? #
Behavioral analytics refers to monitoring the users’ interaction with your product – and in your product – whether for your website, web app, or any other SaaS tool.
Of course, different platforms will require different analytics solutions, but the goal is always the same – improving user experience and leveling up customer satisfaction, conversion, and retention rates.
For example, tools like Hotjar and numerous Hotjar alternatives are great examples of website behavior monitoring tools. By creating heatmaps and recording user sessions, these tools help you understand how a visitor is behaving on your website.
That can provide plenty of valuable insights you can work upon to make improvements.
Why is behavioral analytics so important for UX? #
Monitoring user behavior helps you identify potential challenges users might be experiencing when using your product. It also helps you understand every user journey, eliminate any guesswork, and focus on granular user segmentation to optimize your product for growth.
Ensuring impeccable user experience is the foundation of creating a strong base of happy customers. Behavioral analytics serves to capture the sentiment of UX and helps you find issues with the journey you’ve currently set in place.
Simply put, making your customers happy will help your business grow. It can be through word-of-mouth referrals that will bring more customers your way, or it can be through cross-selling and upselling opportunities that will increase your basic-to-pro plans conversion.
Increasing conversion rates and driving more sales is an ongoing challenge for many SaaS businesses which can be resolved by carefully tweaking the customer journey.
Delighting your users every step of their journey – starting from the point of signing up on your website and onboarding flows throughout the streamlined upgrades – can take you a long way.
Let’s look at six steps that’ll help you improve user experience by using behavior analytics.
Step #1: Set clear goals #
You can get great results only if you determine the goal you’re trying to achieve. So, start with clarifying the goals. After that, you can formulate a strategy that will get you towards the desired outcomes.
For example, you can start by asking the following questions:
How can we get more people from my mailing list to my website?
Why is our churn rate so high? What can we do to bring it down?
Why are our landing page conversions so low?
What are our customers saying about our product?
What are the pain points for our users once they start using our product?
These are only a couple of questions that’ll let you pay more attention to UX and start improving it. Once you have end goals, you can work backward to create a strategy and outline specific ways to accomplish the goals.
Step #2: Monitor different stages of the customer journey #
The whole customer journey is a very long process, so focusing on just a single step might not be the most effective way to improve the user experience. Therefore, it’s necessary to monitor different journey stages.
Marketing metrics #
If you’re running a marketing campaign, for many of your customers the experience will begin when they see your ad. Whether it leads them to a blog post on your website or directly to a sign-up form, that’s the first point of contact. Therefore, it’s the first part that you should closely monitor.
Depending on your channel, you can use Google Analytics, Facebook Pixel, Instagram Insights, or any other analytics tool that will help you learn how well your ads are performing and whether some types of ads are more successful. Compare the click-through rates, cross-reference with the industry standards, and see whether there’s a way for improvement.
On the other hand, take a look at the performance of your email campaigns. You can design different email sequences and A/B test the performance. Numerous email tools, like, for example, Mailchimp, Customer.io, Userlist, and others, come with built-in analytics that will allow you to understand your customers’ behavior better.
Experimenting with your marketing can have a significant impact on the traffic that comes to your website. But it’s all for nothing if your landing page isn’t converting well.
Landing page conversion rates #
Turning website visitors into customers is where landing page optimization plays its role. Keeping the conversion rates high ensures that your marketing efforts are paying off. Effective landing pages are crucial for making a profit, whether you’re selling a product or a service.
For example, if you bring 1,000 potential clients to your landing page and turn 50 of them into customers, your conversion rate is 5%. However, if you’re bringing 3,000 customers to your funnel, yet you’re only getting 30 customers, your conversion rate is 1%. That means that your landing page needs more optimization to get to the average landing page conversion rate of 2.35% across industries, or higher.
To see how you compare to your industry’s average CTR, head over to MarketingProfs’ graph on CTR benchmarks for 16 industries. Whatever your industry average is, aim to double that percentage figure, as that’s typically how much the best companies in the industry are achieving.
Using heatmap generating tools to see how your prospective customers behave on the landing page and then diving deep into behaviors with session recording tools, will help you achieve better conversion rates.
Churn rates #
These represent the percentage of people who leave your product. It can happen during the activation flow or onboarding steps, at the end of the free trial, or at any other point down the line. As you could’ve imagined, keeping this percentage low results in better product adoption and user retention.
This is where session recording tools like FullSession can help you detect the patterns in drop-off moments, find the elements that may be causing confusion, and identify exact issues that lead to cancellations and customers moving away from your product.
Here’s an example of how it could look like in practice.
Give the data a thorough analysis. If you notice that many customers are going through the same behavior pattern before leaving, investigate down to the root cause of the problem. The solution might be as simple as simplifying the sign-up form, or you could detect the need for feature upgrades.
Once you make improvements, keep measuring the effects of the change. If the churn rates are dropping down, you’re on the right path.
Product usability #
Product usability is essential for every web app and SaaS tool out there. Detecting bugs and fixing them is the best way to show your users that you care about UX.
Specific user behavior monitoring tolls will report bugs in the user experience. At the same time, you can use heatmaps to see whether there’s repeated clicking on a button that’s not working. If you follow the users throughout the session, you can also notice rage quit patterns.
If you have hundreds of thousands of users, it can be difficult to watch everything closely. For this purpose, you can use product analytics tools like Mixpanel, Amplitude, and others to generate reports that will help you detect issues with in-app behavior.
All in all, keeping your product performance seamless is crucial for an impeccable user experience. Along with analytics tools, you can also use friction logging as an effective way to detect negative friction and start working on improvements.
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User satisfaction #
Measuring user satisfaction is best done by asking customers directly how they feel about using your product. This can be done with NPS or CSAT surveys asking users to quickly rate their experience.
Consider adding such features to your app or website to improve customer experience. You can use tools like Chameleon to build and deploy in-app surveys to collect contextual feedback directly from your app.
It’s a great way to get quick feedback from users at the right moment and learn more about your product quality. This will point you to the parts of your product that need immediate attention.
Step #3: Use various tactics and approaches #
Different parts of your product funnel will require different approaches, so make sure to use various tools and tactics to see user behavior from all angles.
Here are the types of analytics and experimental tactics you can use to monitor the behavior and capture relevant data.
A/B tests #
A/B testing will clearly show which of the different solutions you offer works better for customers. For example, this approach is perfect for testing the effectiveness of landing pages, PPC ads, email sequences, and new feature announcements.
To start with A/B testing, create two or more versions and use analytics to see how well they’re performing. For example, if you test various UX/UI patterns, it will help you find the perfect design that people seem to gravitate towards. This can be a simple tweak that could increase conversion rates, and you can use a CRO testing calendar to track the results.
You can also use tooltips as a tool to validate feature ideas or experiment with fake door testing and beta releases. As the latest Chameleon Benchmark Report shows, 45% of our customers are already using Tooltips for various use cases and seeing good results with it.
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One of the easiest ways to monitor your website visitors’ behavior is by using a heatmap tool. These analytics tools present the areas of your web pages as cold or hot.
All the places where people often click on the website are labeled as hot. Cold areas, on the other hand, represent areas with no or little activities. You can use this to identify the elements of the page that your visitors mostly use and focus on optimizing them for better results.
For example, areas with CTA buttons are usually hot. However, if your button is close to the bottom of the page, it might not get that many “views” and clicks. It could be wiser to put it closer to the top, so it’s immediately visible to the visitors.
Session recordings #
Use session recording tools to pick up the users’ behavior in your product. Aside from being a great way to follow users’ behavior and identify pain points, it’s also a good way to discover software bugs.
The analysis of recordings will clearly show how your users are interacting with your product’s UI. You’ll be able to easily conclude what parts of the interface could need some improvement for a better user experience.
For even more sophisticated insights and cohort-based analysis, use tools like FullSession to segment your users to filter the results and find patterns in behavior you can use for further improvements.
Customer feedback #
The feedback you get from your customers is one of the best resources for further improvements. For example, you can use feedback tools and widgets to learn more about the performance of particular features. Create in-app surveys to ask a specific question and get contextual feedback from your customers while they are in the product.
You can use in-app surveys to find out:
Are users happy with a particular feature?
What would help them move around more easily?
Why some of the users are canceling their subscriptions?
This will help you gain invaluable insights and get to know your users better. With that, you can move on to creating better products for them. As Steve Jobs said: “Get closer than ever to your customers. So close that you tell them what they need well before they realize it themselves.”
Step #4: Carefully analyze insights and find patterns #
Don’t expect your analytics to tell you anything from the moment you implement them. Let some time go by so you have more data to analyze.
That’s especially important if you’re just starting out and you still have a large enough customer base to identify the behavioral habits and patterns. In this case, prioritize the quality of your service and reach out directly to existing customers for their opinion. Use the research insights to make some adjustments and improve product performance.
If you already have a large customer base, start tracking the metrics, analyzing data, and discovering patterns. After months and years of monitoring, you’ll be able to predict customer behavior more accurately and prepare for success.
Keep in mind, however, that when it comes to gathering data it is imperative that you use only ethically sourced data. Users can become angry or even annoyed when they find out that their data was collected in unethical ways.
Step #5: Measure the impact of your actions #
Whatever changes and improvements you make, head over to the analytics tool and watch the action unfold.
You’ll be able to notice the changes immediately, which will allow you to act fast if it’s not what you’ve expected.
If the user experience is improving as intended, you can focus on making improvements in other problematic areas that you’ve identified.
Step #6: Repeat the whole process #
Improving user experience is not a one-time quick fix. It’s an ongoing process that will take you from one iteration of your product to another.
The goal is to consistently find new ways of improving.
Over time, you’ll perfect the product and create a seamless UX for everyone who decides to use your product.
Concluding thoughts #
Following the above-mentioned steps will help you set your product apart from the competition.
Actively working on improving your product and user experience will have a strong impact on building and nurturing a community of loyal customers because your users will know they can rely on your product and support.
Keep that in mind when you’re deploying your product or launching new features. Use all the available analytics to perfect the experience.
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This article is written by Mohamed Sehwail, CEO at FullSession.io, and a pioneer investment and financial executive who capitalized on strong entrepreneurial and financial skills through working in leading roles over the past decade.