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8 user engagement tools to make your product sticky
Just like traditional stores, some websites make you feel at home from the moment you arrive and draw you into discovering what’s on offer—while others don’t get the messaging or design quite right and send you scurrying for the exit.
Creating a sticky product that engages your users means understanding exactly what they want and showing them the value you can give them throughout their user experience.
User engagement tools can help.
Last updated5 Sep 2022
In this article, we’ll look at eight user engagement tools that can help you design a great product experience that keeps your users engaged at every stage, from onboarding to real-time support. We’ll also show you which metrics you can collect to find out how well your user engagement tools are working, and give you actionable tips on how to use different tools depending on your business type.
Want to create a sticky product your users love?
Hotjar’s tools help you find out what your users want from your product
8 user engagement tools to help users get the most out of your site
User engagement tools vary from product to product depending on which stage of the customer journey you are at. But all of them have the same goal—to make your site ‘sticky’ so users spend more time there and keep coming back for more.
The tools we’ve included in this piece relate to the different strategies you can put in place to create a sticky product:
Understanding your users so you design and perfect a product that’s right for them
Designing an onboarding process that quickly shows users the value of your product
Supporting and communicating with users to help them get the most out of your product
We’ll look at tools that gather quantitative user engagement metrics that tell you how many visitors come to your site and how much time they spend there. And we’ll look at how qualitative insights from tools like session recordings can help you understand why users engage with your product.
The user engagement software you choose will depend on your business type, your budget, and your user engagement strategies, for example, whether you want to prioritize a strong social media presence or create a compelling onboarding experience.
Before you choose your tool, talk to stakeholders and key team members so you know what your goals are and which tools will add the most value to your business.
Understanding your users
You can find out about your users by gathering and analyzing traditional website metrics—user numbers and page views—and combining them with product experience (PX) insights to show why users behave in particular ways on your site.
Mixpanel is an analytics platform that helps improve user engagement by monitoring and analyzing user actions. It follows every step that users take on your website, and it helps you create brightly colored and easy-to-understand graphs to share across teams and get stakeholder buy-in for product updates.
Mixpanel gives you detailed metrics on user numbers and user behavior:
Web traffic: user numbers, average session length, page views per session, etc.
Entry and exit points: where your users enter your site (helpful for measuring the success of SEO or ad campaigns) and where they go to when they leave.
Returning user rate, conversion rate, and bounce rate
User journey, so can compare users who arrived via a search result or from a social media campaign
Mixpanel is particularly useful when you want to launch a new feature or update with a particular group of users. For example, you can trial a new call-to-action (CTA) button with users who arrive via a Twitter campaign to understand how they engage with your landing page. If this particular campaign is successful, you then roll it out to all users.
Hotjar is a product experience (PX) insights tool that goes beyond traditional web metrics to give you a detailed understanding of your users.
Hotjar’s Observe tools help you visualize user behavior through Session Recordings and Heatmaps.
Session Recordings are playbacks of users as they journey through your site, which give you the chance to see your product through their eyes. You can filter recordings by users who perform particular actions—like signing up to a newsletter—and then watch how they interact with your site compared with users who didn't engage as much.
Watching recordings of visitors as they use your site gives you the chance to see your product through their eyes. If you’ve just launched a new version of your ecommerce site, but wonder why users keep bouncing from product pages before making a purchase, you can watch recordings of bounced users to try to understand why.
Heatmaps show you which elements of your site engage users and which ones get ignored. While scroll maps pinpoint the exact spot where users stop scrolling and leave a web page.
They can help you improve customer engagement with their site by identifying how many visitors are clicking on product icons rather than CTA buttons, for example.
Techsmith used heatmaps to help redesign one of their main product features pages. The design team decided to make the whole area of the page clickable so users didn’t experience rage clicks when they clicked on images that didn’t take them anywhere.
You can view a single heatmap for each page of your site, or filter them by specific criteria like device, browser, user path, or user attribute to see how different types of visitors behave and engage with your product.
Hotjar’s Ask tools help you find out what users really think about your site or product.
Surveys let you ask users for feedback at key moments during their user journey so you can find out what motivates the time they spend on a page or their session length. When you get voice of customer input, you can make customer-centric decisions rather than guesswork to improve user engagement.
Hotjar’s Feedback widget helps you capture in-the-wild user responses while they’re using your site. Users can highlight the parts of the page that are causing them problems—so you can identify and fix bugs or improve page layout to improve user engagement.
Pro tip: to understand the source of frustration, you can watch the user’s session recording to see what went wrong. This could help you identify a bug or unclickable link that is causing problems for all your users—not just the one who gave the negative user feedback.
Live feedback lets users tell you what they think of your product wherever they are on your site.
3. Google Optimize
Google Optimize is an A/B testing tool that helps you run website experiments to continually improve and enhance the user experience.
Once you’ve gathered user engagement metrics and product experience (PX) insights, you can use Google Optimize to trial new designs, color schemes, user journey maps, or features with different groups of users.
For example, if you notice that you are experiencing a higher than expected bounce rate from your landing page, you can create different page layouts and test them with a small group of users before deciding which layout is most effective at engaging your users. If your new designs still don’t result in better user engagement, you can make adjustments and test them again.
For each variant of a Google Optimize test, you can establish targeting rules including:
User type such as high-value customer or new user
Behavior, for example, users who come from a specific channel or source
Geographical area including city, region, or country
Browser or device used
In order to engage users, you must have an onboarding process that shows them the value of your product from the moment they start using it.
Userpilot helps you design and build an engaging onboarding flow to show users what your product does and how it can help them in their daily lives. By developing a smooth onboarding process, you can improve the customer experience and get users closer to fully adopting your product.
Userpilot offers product analysis metrics to help you understand how different types of users experience your product, so can create a personalized experience for different visitor profiles. For example, you can ask users what their goals are for your web analytics tool—whether it’s for your own blog or for your clients—and segment users to different onboarding paths based on their needs.
User pilot supports new users as they onboard with hints and tips to help them find their way around your product and offers real-time support if they still cannot find what they need.
Goal achievement to measure the success of the whole onboarding experience
Goal competition of each step in user activation
Goal completion according to doing different groups of users
Stonly is another onboarding tool that helps you guide your users through the initial setup of your product. It encourages self-service support by giving users access to a customer knowledge base through a popup widget that appears at key moments in the onboarding journey.
To help users feel more connected to your brand, you can customize the way your onboarding sequences look so they are on brand and fully integrated with your product.
By asking them who they are and what they want to achieve, Stonly gives your users an onboarding experience that’s tailored to their needs. It also bases the onboarding flow on user data to make the steps they go through more relevant. For example, if you have an HR tool, its user profiles can range from an HR manager to payroll administrator. By asking your users what their roles are, you can show them the most relevant parts of your product and talk to them using the language they’re most familiar with.
To measure the success of your onboarding process and understand how it contributes to user engagement. Stonly tracks:
The paths users take
The paths that causes users to get stuck and drop off
User support and communication
Giving your users support when they need it and responding quickly to their feedback can help keep users engaged and prevent them from drifting away.
Drip is a CRM tool and email marketing platform that helps you engage users by improving their experience of your email communication. It lets you create targeted email campaigns that address the particular needs of individuals and businesses, and encourages users to connect with their favorite communication channels like SMS or social media.
With Drip, you can segment your users and send them a particular flow of messages based on their behavior and interaction with your product—helping to make users feel listened to and looked after. You can also run tests on your messaging to see how well users respond to different communication formats and tone of voice.
To track the effect of your Drip marketing campaigns on user engagement, you can track:
Message response rates
Engagement rates for specific dates and strategies
Unsubscribe, bounces, opens, and clicks
Juphy is a social media engagement tool that helps you monitor social media mentions and communication. It lets you view and respond to all social communication channels in a single inbox and improves user engagement by helping you quickly respond to comments, direct messages, and reviews through its dashboard.
It’s a useful tool for staying on top of user comments outside of the realm of your own website, so you can engage with users who mention your brand or product, and if necessary address negative comments and take back control of the narrative. For example, if some of your users decide to criticize the design of your new SaaS product on Twitter—rather than telling you themselves—you’ll get an alert from Juphy and be able to quickly join the conversation. And if this discussion results in a new design, then you can let them know how their feedback is helping you improve the product experience.
To stay on top of your product’s social media presence, Juphy tracks:
Social sentiment: the mood behind the conversations and comments.
Trends: what catches your audience’s attention so you can think of new ideas to interest them
Hashtags and keywords to use to grow your audience in the future or right now.
Social share of voice: the percentage of people’s conversations and shares in your industry that are about your product
Social media ROI: the value of your social media presence
Typeform is a user support tool that lets you create surveys based on user insights. Its forms are easy to create, and you can use its bank of templates to create surveys for different purposes like lead capture or feedback.
Typeform surveys can be integrated anywhere on your website or platform and have a high response rate thanks to the personalized user experience that you can create with your surveys. They have a ‘hidden fields’ function so you can address users by their name, and you can personalize the experience with an informal, conversational interaction and customized user flows that vary according to user response.
Views: the number of times your Typeform was loaded (but not necessarily started)
Starts: the number of times a Typeform was loaded and started
Submissions: the number of times a Typeform was loaded, started, and submitted.
Completion rate: the percentage of people who complete a Typeform survey after starting
Time to complete
Filters: you can segment Typeforms by date or device
You improve customer engagement by creating a user persona survey with Typeform to help you find out what users need, rather than what you think they need. For example, during the weeks after the launch of a customer relationship management tool, you can ask each user what their role is, what their goals are, and what barriers are coming between them and their goals. This way, you can tweak your product and design personalized user journeys to match what they need from it.
Design a techstack to meet your user engagement goals
Creating a sticky product that will get your users spending longer on your website and coming back for more will turn them from casual visitors to engaged and loyal visitors that will help your business grow.
To improve user engagement, you need software that helps you:
Understand your users through traditional metrics and product experience (PX) insights tools, so you can design and refine a product that meets their needs
Create an onboarding process that shows users how your product works and how it can help them
Support your users at every step of the journey and quickly respond to their questions, regardless of the communication channel.
By creating a techstack that combines all of these elements of user engagement, you’ll be able to design products that will delight your users and turn them not just into loyal customers, but brand advocates.
Want to create a sticky product that your users love?
Hotjar’s tools help you understand your users and find out what they want from your product