Customer experience professional looking at their laptop and reviewing the session replay information to optimize the site for conversions

When it comes to collecting data for business intelligence, the idea of user session replay has a lot to offer. It’s important for marketers to look at such replays within the full context of marketing analytics, to figure out how to benefit from the power of tracking customers in this very specific way.

The Power of Session Replay

Being able to replay user sessions really breaks considerable new ground when it comes to analyzing customer experience.

Traditionally, companies took in metrics like purchase tracking results, webpage views and clicks on marketing hyperlinks, to try to build a profile of how a customer thinks, and what they do on the web. But all of these are based on static inputs — individual user events. They don’t really show the whole picture.

Imagine how replays can help show marketers more about what customers do online. Instead of getting a list of ‘yes or no’ outcomes, you get a visual look into the customer’s journey — not only where they went, but how long it took them to go there, what controls and menu links they used, and much more.

Session replays allow marketers to get inside customers’ heads in a remarkable way. One of the biggest values of visual approach is being able to see the exact ways in which a user moves through a website or form. Did they pause on certain fields or paragraphs? Was there a moment of hesitation? Did they move between two or more options for a while?

All of this helps marketers to really see and explore the results of what they put in motion with their carefully crafted campaigns. They can see what works, and what doesn’t, and learn more about the psychology of their target audiences. You don’t get this with tracking data.

Efficient Use of Replay

With this in mind, session replay also takes time. It can take many hours to go through all of the compiled user sessions, and figure out what each individual customer did or didn’t do. The time resources can become prohibitive.

UserReplay offers a way to help companies get more precise with the replay of user sessions.

Here’s one way to think about this – instead of just “running all of the sessions” you can use data sets first, and then use specific replays to “validate” what you find.

By crunching the numbers before doing replay, marketers can figure out whether certain sets of sessions were unusual outliers. They can first get a somewhat broad picture of overall user activity, and then focus their replay on very specific sets of user sessions.

For instance, as in the above example, if there were only a few sessions where some moment of hesitation occurred, where a user took longer to move through a form, or where there was a much more complex set of user events, marketers can isolate those sessions to look at, instead of slogging through a whole lot of sessions that really look similar and can be conveyed with just a set of data points.

When you combine these capabilities with the power of pre-formatting data tools, you really get a way to enhance and optimize marketing analytics. You get return on investment in terms of improved conversion near the bottom of the funnel — you get more versatile ways to observe customer behavior when it really counts.

Our software is also compatible with common IT tools such as New Relic (APM) – if you already have one of these service for real time and trending data, you can plug in UserReplay to the equation and get a “backup” tool for additional insight. Use session replay with benchmarking and analytics programs to really boost those processes that fuel conversion. Consider how this addition to your business toolkit could help you to compete in today’s high-tech marketing world.

ROI of Online Customer Experience Management

Elaine Winchester

Elaine Winchester