Mobile App Heatmaps: How to Use Them

Touch Heatmaps are one of the best tools for getting inside your user’s head and understanding behavior patterns

Mobile App Heatmaps: How to Use Them 1

In-app analytics solutions like UXCam often boast of having heatmaps in their lineup of tools, but what are heatmaps and why are they such a great tool to have?

Users today have a large variety of options for their mobile apps.

The Google app market alone has around 2.8 million apps. The Apple app store has 2.2 million.

With such a competitive market, knowing your audience and how they use your app is more important than ever.

88% of online users are less likely to return to your site/app if they’ve had a negative experience.

So how do you ensure that the user’s experience is ideal and how do you know what to work on to enhance the UX?

It’s unlikely that you’re going to be able to sit next to the user while they use your app, so how do you see what they are experiencing?

Touch Heatmaps are one of the best tools for getting inside your user’s head and understanding their behavior on your app.

What are Heatmaps?

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In short, heatmaps are a visual overlay of an array of colors to represent the movements of users. Heatmaps represent the average user activity, allowing you to see exactly where users are focusing and where you should be looking.

The human eye can comprehend an array of colors more easily and much quicker than we can analyze a set of numbers. Heatmaps aggregate large numbers of data from users and compile it in a way that allows us to quickly and more accurately draw conclusions from the results. For this reason, heatmaps are best used in large groups of data and show us extremes (either where the most activity is or the least).

How Heatmaps can help you

So we’ve covered what heat maps are but why do you want them? What can they do for you?

Organize and Optimize Your App

A visually appealing and easy-to-use app will bring customers in and keep them coming back.

With the use of heatmaps, you can see what is getting the most attention from the user and what is getting overlooked. See what gets the most attention so you can gain a better idea of what the user wants out of your app.

Perhaps the user is trying to click on a word or image that is not clickable? This is an excellent opportunity to add in a link to this area to bring the user what they are looking for.

For a closer look at this, let’s look at a scenario from UXCam.

A company using UXCam, let’s call them Photos Inc., used heatmaps to look at user behavior with their app. This was the result:

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From the results, we can see that Photo Inc.’s login page was adequate but perhaps not ideal for their users. With heat maps, we see that most users logged in with a Facebook account instead of an email.

To increase user login and to improve user experience, Photo Inc. just had to move their Facebook login button to the top of the other options. This made the Facebook sign-in more prominent and moved the email sign in to second on the list. First impressions are 94% design related. Just that little change can spiral into big improvements for Photo Inc. What improvements could you make to your app?

Maximize the effectiveness of your CTA

A Call To Action (CTA for short) is only useful if your readers see it and tap on it. If no one sees your CTA because it’s too far down the page or it’s in an odd place then you will see a drop in user onboarding.

If users are attempting to click on an area that isn’t linked, you can consider putting a CTA in a high traffic area that is otherwise wasted.

Heatmaps are one of the most helpful tools for identifying the problems that users are encountering. See where your users are getting hung up in the process and where they abandon the process.

Does the app need to include more directions for the user? Maybe there’s something that could be simplified?

Perhaps you’re asking for too much too soon. Whatever the problem, it’s important that it’s taken care of so you can encourage more users to use your app to meet their needs. Heatmaps are a fantastic tool that can save you time, money and even a headache or two!

Heatmaps are just one feature that UXCam offers. UXCam integrates easily and quickly into any app. Where other analysis apps may affect your performance, UXCam is lightweight, with no performance penalty. It also integrates with other programs you may use such as Google Analytics, Crashlytics, and more.

Interested in finding out more? Try out UXCam for free here!

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