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7 powerful examples of UX research in action

After a lengthy planning and designing process, you’ve turned your website or app vision into a reality. But maybe you've noticed that despite its visual appeal, conversions are low while bounce rates keep soaring. Often, a poor user experience (UX) is to blame, affecting your brand perceptions and customer conversions.

Last updated

16 Apr 2022

So, how can you create a frictionless, user-centric experience? Strong UX research and smart use of UX research tools are key.

While the research process can be a challenge, analyzing how other brands have successfully conducted UX research can inspire your own approach. This article dives into seven detailed case studies and shows you how to use UX research tools to identify and solve UX challenges and delight your customers.

Empower your team to do great UX research

Use Hotjar for effective end-to-end UX research campaigns that help you deeply understand user needs

Why and when should you perform UX research?

UX research is the strategic process of analyzing target users to understand their needs, behavior, and experience. Teams use UX research, feedback tools, and experimentation techniques to collect contextual insights.

Then, they translate these insights into a user-centric design that generates strong conversions and higher user retention rates.

UX research offers several other benefits, including:

  • Helping create customer delight: by understanding how users behave, you can design your product more accessibly and empathetically. UX research equips teams to create tailored experiences, maximizing customer satisfaction and improving product experience (PX). 

  • Replacing guesswork with data-driven insights: UX research involves collecting and assessing qualitative and quantitative data to make decisions based on comprehensive insights, rather than gut feelings.

  • Providing insight into the user’s needs: the better you know your audience's pain points, the better you can design a product that truly addresses their needs. UX research tells you exactly where your users struggle—so you can come up with solutions. 

  • Helping you achieve critical KPIs: research methods like concept validation and user feedback ensure every iteration moves you toward better user engagement, conversions, increased retention, and reduced churn, positively impacting your revenue.

The benefits of UX research are clear. So when should you start the process? 

Since you are creating a product for someone else and not for yourself, any time is good to start UX research. The beginning doesn't have to be sophisticated. It can start simple and evolve, adapting to the amount/complexity of the questions about the users and the resources of your business.

You only need curiosity, some time, and a willingness to base your product on facts and not assumptions.

Mar P
Product Researcher, Hotjar

Let’s take a look at how seven companies aced UX research and produced incredible results.

7 UX research examples to get inspired

UX research offers you opportunities for conversion rate optimization and personalization that can significantly increase business growth and enhance customer satisfaction.

Contrary to popular belief, you don’t always need a dedicated UX research team: a cost-effective tech stack can do most of the heavy lifting. Product experience insights tools like Hotjar help you assess your users’ experience, measure their behavior, and garner constructive feedback for UX analysis

Here are seven examples of great UX research with the help of product experience insights tools to get you inspired.

1. Zenprint: 7% reduction in bounce rate

Zenprint provides order and wholesale digital printing services in the Australian market.

Challenge 

Zenprint’s biggest challenge was identifying factors leading to drop-offs on their website. The brand’s marketing team struggled to figure out:

  • Where people spent their time

  • What users were interested in 

  • What caused them to drop off

They wanted actionable insights into how users interacted with their site

Action plan

Zenprint’s marketing team leveraged Hotjar (👋) to analyze web performance and understand user behavior at a granular level. They used:

  • Funnels to locate the exact drop-off points in the customer journey

  • Session Recordings to understand how each user behaved on the site, tracing mouse and scroll movements to see which elements users click on

  • Heatmaps to view color-coded representations of popular and unpopular site elements to help discover areas where users spend the most time and determine those that need improvement

This action plan helped the team zero in on their pricing table as a major blocker.

Results 

Once Zenprint identified the problem, the next step was split testing multiple layouts to optimize the pricing table. With a simple change in their pricing plan, the Zenprint team reduced drop-off rates by 7% and boosted its conversion rate by 2%. 

#Session Recordings showed exactly how users behaved on the Zenprint website, helping the team identify improvement areas. Img source: Hotjar.com
Session Recordings showed exactly how users behaved on the Zenprint website, helping the team identify improvement areas. Img source: Hotjar.com

Key takeaways

For stellar UX research, collect real-time insights from users across different stages of the conversion funnel to identify bottlenecks. Supplement quantitative analytics with qualitative feedback by analyzing Hotjar Recordings and Heatmaps to understand user behavior.

2. Matalan: 400% ROI

Matalan is a British fashion and homeware retail and ecommerce brand.

Challenge 

Without qualitative UX research to interpret data points, Matalan's UX team was forced to make decisions based on gut feelings, relying on quantitative data alone, which gave them limited visibility. The checkout process was showing high drop-offs and they weren’t sure why. 

Action plan

When Matalan migrated to a responsive website, its UX team used Hotjar to record and assess user responses to this change, and compare performance through A/B testing. They also viewed Session Recordings that flagged bugs and glitches early in the migration process.

They used Hotjar's Feedback tools to collect user feedback in real-time to capture the customer’s voice and make product changes to improve the user experience. Combined with user recordings, these provided a complete overview of the user journey, which helped eliminate areas of friction.

Results 

Using recordings to closely monitor user behavior, Matalan optimized its checkout process and increased conversions by 1.23%.

They created a bespoke experience dashboard by combining qualitative insights gathered by Hotjar with Google Data Studio analytics for a comprehensive UX research process. 

#Hotjar works well with traditional web analytics tools like Google Analytics to visualize data more effectively in a full UX dashboard. Img source: Hotjar.com
Hotjar works well with traditional web analytics tools like Google Analytics to visualize data more effectively in a full UX dashboard. Img source: Hotjar.com

Key takeaways

Instead of relying solely on numbers, collect user perspectives to add depth to your UX research. This concrete feedback can make your team aware of flaws in the user experience so you can proactively offer fixes.

3. Materials Market: 3x conversions

Materials Market is a UK-based marketplace for construction material manufacturers and customers.

Challenge 

Materials Market’s co-founder wanted to optimize their website experience by improving three problem areas:

  • Poorly placed calls to action (CTAs), where mobile users couldn’t see the CTA clearly enough to click on it

  • Customer drop-offs at the checkout step because users only wanted to check the delivery time

  • A complicated cookie policy that caused visitors to bounce as soon as they landed on the website

Action plan

Materials Market used Hotjar Recordings and Heatmaps to dig deeper into these UX research issues. The result was a gradual upgrade of the website to meet—and exceed—customer expectations. Here’s what happened:

  • They improved the visibility of CTAs with changes to font, color, and design. The team also included a rating widget next to the CTAs to display social proof. 

  • They removed the need to set up an account to place an order and added an estimated delivery date for every product

  • They implemented design changes in the cookie policy pop-up to make it 30% bigger with better color and copy. They also placed the banner on the top of the page. 

Results

Redesigning the checkout flow decreased drop-offs by 86%. On the flip side, the conversion rate more than tripled to 1.6%—massively boosting yearly revenue by more than £10,000.

#Materials Market changed its checkout page to remove previous issues causing user drop-offs. Img source: Hotjar.com
Materials Market changed its checkout page to remove previous issues causing user drop-offs. Img source: Hotjar.com

Key takeaways

UX research tools like recordings are a great way to understand user behavior on your website—you can sort and filter recordings with Hotjar by relevance. This can boost your UX research efforts without relying heavily on technical expertise and development knowledge.

4. Totally Promotional: increased sales while enhancing UX

Totally Promotional is a US-based manufacturer and retailer that produces customized promotional products for brands.

Challenge 

Totally Promotional wanted to evaluate on-site user behavior and improve the brand's UX quality but was struggling to collect meaningful user data that offered a complete insight into the user experience.

Relying on Google Analytics alone, the team lacked qualitative feedback to interpret customer needs and design empathetically.

Action plan

The team added Hotjar to its tech stack to get a better view of user interaction and web experience. They used Hotjar Heatmaps to assess where users spent their time and dropped off—identifying underperforming pages and bugs. 

Hotjar’s Feedback and Survey tools were useful in capturing Voice of the Customer (VoC) insights, allowing Totally Promotional to examine why users behaved the way they did. They also watched Session Recordings to pinpoint where buyers felt stuck in the order process. 

Results 

This mix of UX research tools removed the guesswork from Totally Promotional’s website optimization process. The team took an evidence-based approach and incorporated both minor tweaks and significant updates in the ecommerce storefront design. 

However, the most crucial action they took was changing the order process for their branded pens page, which tripled sales for this product.

#Hotjar Session Recordings take UX teams through the exact navigation path showing mouse clicks and scrolling movements. Img source: Hotjar.com
Hotjar Session Recordings take UX teams through the exact navigation path showing mouse clicks and scrolling movements. Img source: Hotjar.com

Key takeaways

Behavioral data and user perspectives are both necessary for excellent UX research. Intuitive tools like Hotjar’s Feedback widget can help you collate meaningful information to supercharge your UX research campaign and implement strategic website changes. 

5. Hussle: fixed one bug every week

Hussle is a subscription-based network of gyms, spas, and digital fitness solutions. 

Challenge 

Hussle’s biggest challenge was high customer churn: the brand’s product team wanted to better understand why this was happening and deploy UX research to reduce churn with an unparalleled product experience. 

Action plan

Hussle’s team leveraged Surveys and Recordings to find answers as to why users were leaving. 

It turned out there were three core reasons behind churn:  

  • High subscription cost

  • Changes in the user’s location 

  • Purchase of direct gym membership 

Results

Deploying UX research tools to understand churn led to an improved UX and user interface and boosted Hussle’s growth. The team saw great results, including: 

  • A preemptive bug fix that would’ve hindered the buying process 

  • Streamlined the bug-fixing process by detecting and deleting at least one bug weekly

  • Gathered meaningful insights from users through 1000+ survey responses and over 73,000 seconds of Hotjar Session Recordings

The team has continued to use Session Recordings and Heatmaps to stay one step ahead—whether detecting bugs or finding where users get stuck. 

#Survey tools helped Hussle collect feedback to get rich insights while users browsed the site in real-time. Img sourcer: Hotjar.com
Survey tools helped Hussle collect feedback to get rich insights while users browsed the site in real-time. Img sourcer: Hotjar.com

Key takeaways

User feedback is a great way to understand the reasons behind churn so you can address them and improve retention. Additionally, you can also gather data to proactively fix bugs and improve UX.

6. Turum-burum: +55% conversion rate

Turum-burum is a digital UX design agency that provides conversion rate optimization strategies for clients like Intertop, one of Ukraine's biggest shoe retailers.

Challenge 

Intertop saw a rapid increase in traffic on their website and used Turum-burum’s services to maximize conversions from this influx of visitors. They used UX research to address three crucial challenges:

  • Simplifying and enhancing the customer journey once a visitor lands on Intertop’s homepage

  • Testing and implementing UX changes as quickly as possible

  • Anticipating and mitigating any potential risks resulting from UX changes

Action plan

Using Hotjar’s exit-intent Surveys, the Turum-burum team identified a major problem in the conversion funnel: their complicated checkout process.  

Hotjar helped the team in two main ways:

  • They used the user feedback coming in through Surveys to prioritize improvements 

  • They used Heatmaps and Session Recordings to understand customer blockers and pain points 

Drawing on these UX research insights, the team decided to add a few small but crucial details to Intertop’s storefront, such as filters, intuitive product lists, and an improved checkout flow.

Results

Product experience insights helped the team pinpoint exact bottlenecks and run feedback-driven experiments.  

These changes skyrocketed Intertop's conversion rate by 54.68% and reduced bounce rates by 13.35%. They also enhanced the product page and lists to increase conversion from the cart to the checkout page by 36.6%.  

#Hotjar’s exit-intent popup helps collect qualitative feedback to understand why customers are leaving. Img source: Hotjar.com
Hotjar’s exit-intent popup helps collect qualitative feedback to understand why customers are leaving. Img source: Hotjar.com

Key takeaways

Mapping the customer journey through your sales funnel is a critical part of successful ecommerce UX research. Monitor user needs at every stage through heatmaps, recordings, and feedback tools. 

7. eShopWorld: better UX and conversion fluctuation awareness 

eShopWorld delivers global ecommerce solutions to help brands scale their business at the international level. 

Challenge 

One of eShopWorld’s key services is conversion rate optimization. They monitor conversions for every client to identify drops and discrepancies. 

However, the team didn't have a reliable tool for evaluating user behavior and countering occasional dips in the conversion rate.

Action plan

eShopWorld used Hotjar Feedback tools on its checkout page to collect real-time user opinions: customers were able to flag issues right before ordering, and the eShopWorld team could dig deeper into understanding the context behind their comments via Session Recordings.

Heatmaps also provided actionable insights into customer behavior so the team could holistically review user issues and prioritize them according to their impact on the UX.

Results

eShopWorld studied all the user feedback to get to the root of key problems. They used research data to plan and communicate UX design and user flow changes to tackle each blocker.

The team also analyzed Hotjar Heatmaps and watched Session Recordings to assess whether UX redesigns and changes produced the intended effect for users.

#Hotjar’s Feedback widget helps UX teams gather feedback on specific elements of the website without disrupting the user’s browsing experience. Img source: Hotjar.com
Hotjar’s Feedback widget helps UX teams gather feedback on specific elements of the website without disrupting the user’s browsing experience. Img source: Hotjar.com

Key takeaways

UX research is a continuous process of striving to understand your customers and their preferences at every stage of design and development. By using research tools to identify key issues and dig deeper into their context, teams can produce user-centric interfaces and make data-informed decisions.

UX research is paramount to product success

For your site to attract quality traffic, deliver seamless buying experiences, and move the needle on conversion rates, you need to understand how your users behave and what they expect.

UX research tools can help you stay on top of your customer needs. Feature-packed PX insights tools allow you to easily observe user behavior, synthesize user feedback, and perform experiments to drive product growth. 

Empower your team to do great UX research

Use Hotjar for effective end-to-end UX research campaigns that help you deeply understand user needs

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