If you’re a business selling online, every aspect of your customers’ journey across your site—from how they got there, to what they clicked or didn’t click on each page, to why they did or didn’t make a purchase—is affected by their online experience.
Tools like Hotjar and Mouseflow exist to help you learn more about user behavior so you can figure out what needs to change on your site. Making the right changes at the right time will help you create a smoother experience for your customers, and will ultimately help with conversion rate optimization (CRO).
You’re probably here because you’ve realized that Hotjar and Mouseflow have similar tools and offerings, and it can be hard to tell which software would work best for you or your team. In this piece, we’ll go through some of the differences and similarities between our plans and products. After our comparison tables, we’ll cover:
TL;DR: what are the main differences between Hotjar and Mouseflow?
1) Hotjar has a standard 365-day data retention policy on all plans, including the Free Forever plan, so you can gain insights on user behavior over a long period of time. Since optimization and growth are ongoing processes, long-term data retention is ideal for teams who want to improve the overall user experience: you have the option to act on your discoveries right away, or to study and learn from trends in user behavior, helping you to decide which changes to make, and where or when to make them.
Mouseflow’s data retention starts at one month and extends as you upgrade your plan (12-month data retention begins at the Enterprise level). This is enough for teams that are interested in observing user behavior and monitoring visitors’ actions over a short period of time: you can take immediate action on issues and blockers that customers are experiencing.
2) Hotjar answers multiple questions for multiple team members right from the start. From Hotjar’s Free Forever plan and onward, the number of team members you can share insights with is unlimited. Team members can be grouped together for different projects or products; Hotjar is beneficial to all teams, including UX and CRO professionals, marketers, and analysts.
Mouseflow identifies their product as a tool primarily for marketing teams; by limiting the number of users that can access the tools, Mouseflow’s software can answer the questions of only one user until you upgrade to the Growth plan (Mouseflow’s second-tier business plan).
The history and mission of both companies
Mouseflow was founded by Lasse Schou in 2009. Lasse has a background in computer science, and he was creating websites for clients before he launched Mouseflow. Google Analytics was well known at the time, but Lasse felt “there weren’t really any tools that could show how visitors actually use websites.” Ultimately Lasse launched Mouseflow because he needed a tool like it for himself, as an entrepreneur.
Mouseflow describes their product as “a tool for serious marketers.” With features like session recordings, heatmaps, funnel and form analytics, and user feedback polls, Mouseflow—like Hotjar—will help you better understand user behavior so you can learn how to create a better user experience and increase conversions.
Hotjar entered the scene in 2014 when our five co-founders came together with the vision of making behavior analytics accessible to everyone. Our CEO David Darmanin has a background in conversion optimization, and before Hotjar he used combinations of tools to try to better understand user behavior. Of course, he never found a tool that did everything he needed it to (that would also be accessible to all teams, big and small), which was what led us to where we are today: a market leader trusted by over 430,000 site owners across the globe.
Hotjar—like Mouseflow—uses sampling in our data collection. This approach allows customers to collect fewer data points at a lower cost, while still capturing enough data to make UX improvements and increase conversions as a result.
Learning from user behavior: short- vs long-term insights
If you’re a business selling online, both Hotjar and Mouseflow can answer questions you have about user behavior. If you have questions like:
Can customers easily find what they’re looking for on our site?
What changes should we make to our product page(s) to increase conversions?
What can we learn from how our customers use our site?
Why did that customer abandon their shopping cart? What could we have done differently?
then you’re on the right track: Hotjar’s and Mouseflow’s tools will help you give your customers the experience they need. Which one is best for you though comes down to who will be using the tool, and how you’ll use what you learn.
For example, if you’re interested in observing user behavior and monitoring your visitors’ actions over a short period of time in order to pinpoint issues that customers might be having and to take immediate action, Mouseflow can definitely help you do that.
Hotjar can help you with that, too, but we give you insights over a longer period of time—a year on all plans, even on our Free Forever plan—so you can study user behavior, which will give you a better idea of what changes to make and where to make them to improve the overall experience and outcome for your customers in the long run.
With Hotjar’s standard 365-day data retention, you can address pain points and blockers as soon as they’re discovered, but you also have the option to keep learning from customers’ actions on your site so you can identify and address issues based on trends and seasonalities.
Multiple teams, one goal: improve the customer experience
Customer-centricity is essential to the overall customer experience: to see how and why users behave the way they do on your site—to find out what they really need—will help your teams focus on the customers’ needs and narrow down which changes to make to improve the customer journey.
As we’ve said before, both Hotjar’s and Mouseflow’s tools can answer your teams’ questions and set you onto the path of most assistance, but deciding which one is best for you depends again on who and how you’ll use the tools.
For example, Mouseflow limits the number of users that can access their tools at any given time. This essentially means that their software can answer the questions of just one user until you get up to their Growth plan (their second-tier business plan), which is $99 per month.
Hotjar can answer multiple questions for multiple teams right from the start. From our Free Forever plan and onward, there are zero limits to the number of team members you can share insights with.
To give you some practical examples, here are three things Hotjar does to promote cross-team collaboration:
It's easy to invite new users and get them set up
: just add their email, set their permissions level, and they'll get an invitation to join
Our Recent Team Activity feed is front-and-center on the dashboard
, keeping everyone in the loop on who's doing what: you can see what feedback your team members are collecting, what they’re tracking or recording, changes they’ve made to widgets, and more
Users can be part of multiple teams:
we keep things flexible so accounts can have multiple organizations within them, which means you can group team members together for different projects or products
🧐 Why choose Hotjar?
Hotjar was built with the belief that behavior analytics should be accessible to everyone. But what does that really mean?
Hotjar makes behavior analytics accessible to everyone by making it:
Affordable and easy to get approved
Easy to get set up
Easy to start getting answers
Easy to collaborate with teams
↓ Keep reading to learn more!
How Hotjar makes behavior analytics accessible to all teams
Affordable and easy to get approved:
from our Free Forever plan and up, Hotjar’s tools, retention policies, collaborative features—and of course the insights you get as a result—make Hotjar one of the most valuable sets of tools in your UX and CRO toolbox. The Free Forever plan lets you collect data from 2k pageviews per day, and you can upgrade your plan whenever you need to. As the leader in its market, Hotjar is the safe, trusted choice of over 430,00 websites across the globe.
Easy to get set up:
add a snippet of code to your site, and you’re done.
Easy to start getting answers:
depending on the amount of traffic you have on your site and what questions you’re asking, you could start getting answers right away: for example heatmaps and visitor recordings start collecting data as soon as you set them up, and surveys are active as soon as you launch them. Hotjar’s standard 365-day data retention means you have a choice of either addressing pain points and blockers immediately, or keeping an eye on data over time so you can identify trends.
Easy to collaborate with teams:
right from the start, Hotjar lets you collaborate without team limits. Tools and features are accessible to multiple users, making our software usable and beneficial to everyone including UX and CRO professionals, marketers, and analysts.
Is Hotjar the best fit for your team?
Hotjar is for you if:
You’re a business selling online
You want a collaborative behavior analytics tool that can be used to answer multiple questions by multiple users/teams
Your teams need 365-day data retention so you can study and learn from behavior trends and seasonalities
You want to create a better overall user experience for your customers, and improve conversions as a result
You need to get going quickly and easily
You need affordable plans that let you start small with the ability to upgrade as your business grows
Hotjar is NOT for you if:
Your teams need a live chat or customer support tool
You need a tool to replace Google Analytics
You need a tool to run A/B testing
You’re looking for an SEO tool
We hope this piece has cleared some things up for you, and that you’ve found the info you need in order to choose the tool that’s right for your teams. If you’re still unsure, give Hotjar’s Free Forever plan a try: set-up is quick and easy, and you can start learning from your users right away.
Ready to start using Hotjar?
Get started for free today and start learning what’s happening on your website in an easy, visual way.
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