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When trying to understand customers’ behaviors on a website, it’s necessary to know what their intent is. Why are customers coming to the site?  What are they trying to do? Web analytics solutions, such as Google Analytics or Adobe Analytics, will provide statistics on web traffic including number of visitors, page views, bounce rates, where visitors are going etc., but not the purpose for the visit.  Other tools, such as Clicktale or Crazy Egg, provide visual information with recordings of mouse movements, heatmaps of where visitors are clicking or scroll maps, but again provides no context behind the data. Without the context behind the numbers, it’s impossible to have a complete picture of what’s happening on the site.

How can you better understand what visitors are doing on your site? Conducting a Voice of the Customer study can provide not only insight into WHAT customers are doing on a site, but also the WHY. At UserZoom we refer to such studies as True Intent studies as they are designed to learn what users intend to accomplish while visiting a website.

True Intent studies enable clients to understand:

  • Who is coming to the site?
  • What are they trying to accomplish?
  • Are they successful in their intended task?
  • How did they accomplish their intended task?
  • How difficult was it to use the site?
  • What are the obstacles to task completion?

In a True Intent study, a short javascript code is placed on the main entry point of a site, which is usually the home page.  The javascript code allows a layer-based intercept invitation to appear to visitors at a designated frequency.  The intercept would invite visitors to participate in a short study.  Those who accept the invitation would be asked a few short questions to establish who they are and why they’re visiting the site.  Visitors are then asked to complete their intended task on the site.  Once they’re done, participants will answer a few short follow-up questions about their experience.

Once visitors agree to participate in a True Intent study, UserZoom tracks their behavior on the site through the use of JavaScript tags. A short JavaScript code would need to be placed on any pages where you would like to track clicks and actions. The behavioral data could then be visualized to see the clicks and paths visitors have taken on the site and heatmaps of where visitors clicked from any page visited.

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By asking users a few initial questions (who they are, the purpose of their visit) and then tracking their behavior enable you to understand not only what visitors are doing on the site, but also understand who they are, what they’re trying to accomplish on the site and whether or not they’re successful.

Your study results can also be integrated with the most common Web Analytics solutions to obtain data from your Analytics packages and tie that to the True Intent study data.

True Intent studies are a great approach to obtain a holistic view of what’s happening on your site.

About the author

ti4Ann Rochanayon has over 13 years of experience conducting online studies, particularly in the area of unmoderated remote usability testing.  She’s led hundreds of studies in a range of industries including pharmaceutical, telecommunications, financial services, and technology, including mobile and international research.