At Web Analytics World we’re lucky to get the opportunity to try an amazing variety of tools, platforms and products; from analytics to heatmaps, overlays and RSS to Email tools. We put our findings in our Analytics and SEO Tools section, sharing information about what these tools/platforms do, an intro into the company that’s created it and even the levels of pricing (if applicable).
On the rare occasion, we sometimes go a bit further and write posts about some of the ones we’ve had the chance to use more extensively; like Brandwatch or when we switched over to Feedio for our RSS needs. This time we’ve been lucky enough to not only try Ptengine and their analytics/heatmaps platform but also work with their staff to do some A/B Testing on WAW in order to improve your user experience.
From the Ptengine Beginning
We are always delighted to receive emails asking us to try out a new tool, feature or platform, or to help test new functionality in existing tools that we’re using. We’re especially enthusiastic this year because we’ll be working on updating our Analytics, Management and SEO tools sections. When Ptengine first got in contact it was simply a chance for us to try out their analytics reporting tool … and more excitingly for us, their heatmap functionality. For a while now I’ve been keen to see WAW’s performance report using a heatmap.
Setting up Ptengine on the site was a simple matter, we just needed to add the provided code to the <body></body> section of our site and away we went. In terms of reporting Ptengine has two data centres; a WordPress plugin and reporting website.
The WordPress Dashboard
The plugin dashboard is fairly straightforward and offers “at a glance” analytics reporting. It offers a fairly comprehensive look at your standard metrics; visits, bounce rate, source/technology splits, pages and location and is accessed through your WordPress account.
It is more of an “at-a-glance” high level dashboard though and if you want to do more than adjust your date range or view the various metrics on the graph then you need to use the larger web based reporting site. All of the green”Detail” links for each section will lead you to the larger web based reporting dashboard.
Your More In-Depth Dashboard – Web Style
As mentioned this web-based reporting platform provides a much more in-depth report on your site and offers a lot of great functionality, including heatmaps. When you first log in you can see all of the sites that you’re tracking, and as you can see while we’ve only got WAW in our account we can create an unlimited amount of profiles. While we’ve got access to an Enterprise level this functionality is also available with the free account.
What’s in a Ptengine Dashboard?
There are 3 main sections to your web dashboard;
- Time clips – Ptengine’s answer to real time tracking; 3 sliders showing you real time demographics, device/browser details, which pages visitors are currently on and have recently visited. Similar to what you can see in your WP dashboard but with a twist – here you can select specific pages to get real time data for and the slider below shows you screenshots from each Time Clip section.
- Data Center – This tab takes you deeper into your analytics and has the usual suspects (visits, bounce rate, tech/devices, demographics, conversions). As you can see from the left hand menu there’s a lot of metrics on offer and on the right hand side you can filter by specific page.
- Page Scene – I’m not going to lie to you, this section is my favourite section because it houses the heatmaps functionality. In the free version of Ptengine you can add one page to your heatmaps, you can always edit which page to look at but you have to manually add the page url within your profile settings. On the Enterprise solution you automatically get access to every page or post in your site.
The Heatmaps of it All
What I love best about the Ptengine heatmaps functionality is that with the Enterprise account level you can not only look at heatmaps for specific pages but you can compare 2 pages at the same time, side by side. Over the past 3 months we’ve been running a few A/B tests with Ptengine and the next post in this series will discuss the case study, how we ran our tests and why. Being able to compare two heatmaps side by side was invaluable when trying to determine which changes to make to test on the site and to measure success.
A few things to note:
- While you have a wealth of historical data in your data center, date ranges for the heatmaps are limited to a maximum of 4 weeks.
- Choosing a page to view you get two different heatmaps; click and attention. The click heatmaps show you where people have clicked and/or areas they’ve paid the most attention to and the attention heatmap shows you where users drop off or exit your page.
- The left hand menu shows you heatmaps on different devices, for example this is our homepage on mobile:
- As you can see we’ve got even more options here as we can change from portrait to landscape view, see the same page on tablets and desktop/PC.
- Clicking on the “Page Analysis” Link on the top right of the screen shows the page heatmap and gives a CTR for each link on the page.
- Clicking on the “Metrics” button on the top left of the screen shows the page metrics with a graph view.
Comparing Two Different Pages/Heatmaps
To compare two different pages (which is what we’ve done for our A/B testing of our homepage) you click on the “Heatmaps Comparison” link next to your URL and then simply choose the two pages:
You can select which type of heatmap you’d like to see (attention or page analysis) allowing you to compare any two pages within your site and see quick metrics on each. You can select different date ranges for each page as well, if you want to.
This post is mostly an introduction to Ptengine and what you can do with it, as you can see the free version offers you a lot of options and functionality including heatmaps for an individual page.
Something to take note of is that if you take a close look at our Time Clips Page Metrics image you can see that the draft page for this post is showing up on the list. It’s important for Ptengine users to remember that this platform tracks outside of outside of other analytics platforms so even if you have an analytics opt-out plugin/extension on your browser you will have to manually exclude IPs for regular admins/users within the Ptengine Profile settings:
Our next post in the series will be about the Case Study and A/B testing that we did with Ptengine, taking a look at our homepage design in order to improve your user experience on site. We’ll get more into the heatmaps and analytics side of the testing and dive more into the comparison aspect of Ptengine heatmaps.