UX Knowledge Base

Analysing Mobile App Heatmaps

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How to analyse a heatmap?

The main purpose of heatmap softwares is to let you generate maps that show user interactions from different points of view. The idea is that you should refer to all of them in order to understand your visitors' behavior.

You will be able to answer questions like, “Do people see what you actually want them to see?”, “Are they clicking on the key page elements”, “What are the important CTAs”, “Are there any distractions?, “Are people misled by non-clickable elements?”, and “Are there any issues and glitches across different devices?”

Here are five key ways to gather UX data through heat maps to test your ideas and identify optimization opportunities.

  1. Locate problem taps

Quite often, users click on elements (e.g., images or headings) that they expect to be links. Some of these can be classified as a mis-tap, but heat maps can collect data from enough users to ignore such anomalies and show you typical tap patterns through your audience.

  1. Measure how far users scroll

Not every user who lands on the app navigates down to the bottom of each page, and it is possible that essential content may be missed. Users often view the site from several different devices and apps, and they don't all get to see the same above-the-fold (the portion of the website that is automatically available without scrolling) information.

  1. Locate CTAs with the least and the most clicks

CTAs (calls-to-action) are prompts for user action--usually buttons or links--which may be programmed primarily to encourage clicks and improve sign-ups or purchases. Tap maps record which CTAs have the most views, something that is commonly overlooked. You can analyze things that prevent users from noticing your key CTA right away, or you can recognise an opportunity to try and place a new CTA in an environment that encourages more user interaction.

  1. Showcase best performing design

Heat maps help you to show how well your apps actually perform on clients and colleagues devices. Heat maps are very easy to interpret at a glance, and can better showcase your work to non-designers, helping you to get crucial buy-in to update website ideas or highlight popular projects.

  1. Optimize for mobile and desktop

Responsive web design (pages that conform to different users devices) is a fast and efficient way to deliver content to all of your customers, but you need to note that scrolling on mobile devices will require a lot of changes of what looks like a few lines on the desktop. It is advisable to compare both smartphone and desktop heat maps to see whether significant CTAs are absent from mobile users or to detect any behavioural variations. You may need to develop different mobile and desktop interfaces to ensure good UX across all devices.