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Crazy Egg Case Study

At PBSi, we've been using Crazy Egg heatmaps and reports to complement Google Analytics data to tell us how people are interacting with our content.

A traditional web analytics program (such as Google Analytics) can tell us what pages visitors are going to and even navigation paths, but a picture is worth a thousand words. Heatmapping tools like Crazy Egg can provide a picture (literally) that tells site owners where on the page people are clicking (even if the elements people are clicking on aren't actually hyperlinks!).

That, in turn, can give you insights into:

  • Whether your calls to action are clear enough
  • What content your users are most interested in
  • Whether your design effectively guides users to the content you want them to see
  • Which ad placements are most likely to attract clicks
  • Where people are clicking unsuccessfully (i.e., clicks on non-hyperlinked portions of the page)
  • What design elements you should keep in a redesign, and which ones you should get rid of

Recently, PBS Parents used Crazy Egg to evaluate what parts of their new homepage design their audience found most compelling.

The PBS Parents team was kind enough to share how they have and are using Crazy Egg.


Q: What information were you hoping to get from Crazy Egg that you couldn't get from Google Analytics?

PBS Parents: We wanted to determine how users would respond to the new homepage and elements within the homepage. We wanted to learn the answers to the following:

Are users using the scroll buttons on the carousel?
Do they understand the tabs on the Parenting Tools?
Are they scrolling to see content at the bottom of the page?
What content are users clicking on?

Q: What was the most interesting thing you learned about your users' behavior from the reports?

We found that users clicked on images and text and so we need to make sure that we are consistent in linking images.

(Click to enlarge: On this page, users tried clicking on the pictures of Curious George more than any other element on the page, even though those images weren’t hyperlinked.)

Also, users need additional prompting to click on the large content features at the top of the homepage. The main image and text with arrow was not enough to get users to click on those features.

Q: How are you actually applying this information to your design and editorial decisions?

We found that users understood and liked the PBS KIDS carousel. They used both directional arrows to find the characters or shows. Since it was so popular we moved it to the top of the main navigation so that it could be accessed from every PBS Parents page, instead of just at the homepage.

Since we moved the carousel to the global navigation, the site’s bounce rate and average time on site have improved by 8 to 10 percent.

(Click to enlarge. Crazy Egg allows you to easily compare before-and-after reports side by side.)


Other ideas for using Crazy Egg to help you make decisions:

  • Apply Crazy Egg to your A/B or multi-variate tests to "see" how users are interpreting your page.
  • See what design elements cause people to click
  • See what content/text causes people to click
  • Use real-time data to make editorial decisions on the fly
  • Baseline click patterns before you redesign a page (for comparison purposes)
  • See what kinds of visitors are more likely to take certain actions (using "confetti view" to segment traffic)

Some thoughts on using Crazy Egg (or similar tools) effectively:

  • Have an understanding of what questions you want the report to answer
  • Make time to actually look at the results and commit to implementing (and re-testing) changes
  • Be careful about over-extrapolating conclusions. The reports tell you what people are clicking on, but not necessarily why.
  • When making changes to a page, stop your existing test and start a new one or the report will just lump pre- and post-design results together. (Same advice if you’re testing content placement.)
  • Check out the different kinds of reports offered by Crazy Egg (there's more to it than just clickmaps)
  • Use Crazy Egg in conjunction with your web analytics tool to make sure that your adjustments are positively impacting your overall goals and KPIs.

It's worth noting that Crazy Egg isn't a web analytics program; it's designed primarily to help you do testing. Therefore, you should use it to supplement your existing analytics, not replace it.

Crazy Egg is a month-to-month service (with a free trial), and provides a lot of really useful, actionable information. Definitely consider running some tests, especially if you're gearing up to make changes to your site in the near future, so you're armed with all the relevant data you need to make decisions.

To learn more about Crazy Egg's features and to see a demo, visit their website at crazyegg.com

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