Oh yay! A UX testing comparison article—if you’re here, that means you’re taking a step towards improving the user experience on your website, which is awesome!
We’ve talked about the importance of data based decision making in articles in the past, and we’ve even given you a heads up on the top three tests that you should run for your business but now we’re going deep into the actual platforms for the tests you’re running.
I’ll tell you the winner at the end of each section of the review and why, but in an epic plot twist, I’m just going to tell you the overall winner for me up front: HotJar.
Now this wasn’t a clean win. Crazy Egg’s A/B Test is pretty unbeatable (heh, egg puns, sorry) and there is definitely a time and a place for A/B testing, especially when you’re getting hella traffic to a landing page and want to optimize. But for basic data and super regular testing, HotJar was the winner for me.
Anyways, here’s your actual comparison:
HotJar v Crazy Egg—Pricing
Crazy Egg has only a 30 day trial, $24/month for one well-visited site and unlimited testing.
Hot Jar has a free forever plan with 3 options and $29/month for a well-vistied site and unlimited testing.
Starting Businesses: for testing in the very beginning or for client businesses that are only running a landing page, HotJar is the winner because you don’t really need more testing than you can get with the free forever option.
As you grow: the pricing structure of Crazy Egg is laid out better for companies that are small and growing because tof their “Standard” package, so it makes sense to pay for Crazy Egg when you reach that point.
Comparing the Services
These two are direct competitors so their services do overlap quite a bit. I went through all the options of both
HotJar and Crazy Egg Recordings
Both HotJar and Crazy Egg have screen recordings – with both you can record the whole site or just specific pages.
Hot Jar makes it easy to set up its recordings. I love that there is a mouse tracker on the recording so you can actually see the line trajectory and the dashboard gives you the flag from where your viewer came from.
Crazy Egg kept giving me a popup saying that there was something wrong with the recordings, and it wasn’t super inuitive to use them. When they work it’s lovely, but in the end it’s just a recording.
My Winner: Hotjar.
Heat Maps v Snapshots
These are almost the same.
Heatmaps is really the bread and butter for HotJar, and they do it really well. You can pretty seamlessly see where people clicked, moved their mouse to, where they’ve scrolled—and on what device. It gives you a barometer and a click count and for those of us that prefer data and spreadsheets, it’s easy to download the findings.
Crazy egg does heatmap alright but one of the major downsides is that it you can’t just click into the different technology views (like desktop and mobile from tablet) for info on the same links. What is nice is that it will show you the recordings from the specific view. The Confetti view and the overlay might be helpful, but they might be overkill. It feels a little like all the Snapshot options exist to compete with HotJar.
HotJar. This service just does a better job making to easy to use and easy to understand what I’m looking at. This is great for seeing where people click – and coupled with the recordings where you can watch how they move their mouse, HotJar gives you the most useful information without overselling it’s product or adding features.
HotJar’s feedback options are really robust. They have built in option for adding a rating, a poll, a survey, or a recruitment for qualitative information on the site. They function as popups on the website and can just be a little corner guy if you want to.
Crazy Egg integrates with Survey Monkey now, which is a nice enough service but it really feels again like they are just trying to compete with HotJar’s feedback options. The integration is essentially a dashboard for your survey monkey info that allows you to turn on and off popups. The walkthroughs are a little confusing right now, why did the preview tell me that 100% of my visitors would see the popup? IDK. This is new for Crazy Egg so I’m hoping they fix it because this could be a nice feature if they do it right.
HotJar. I’m actually super impressed with HotJar’s useability here. Qualitative feedback is obviously a cornerstone of development for this company and for Crazy Egg it felt a little like an afterthought they didn’t want to build.
HotJar Funnels and Crazy Egg AB Testing
This is really where the services differ—they each have an offer that is unique and it makes it really hard to choose between them.
HotJar’s Funnel tracker is super nice because it tracks progress through a specific type of action you want site visitors to take. It gives you information on how many people got there, if they dropped off or if they went on to the next stage, and it gives you the conversion rate on your page. Totally incredible. Paired with the recordings and the heat maps, this is a baller way to see where people are leaving your site and give you enough data to figure out how to fix it.
Crazy Egg’s A/B Test is OUT OF THIS WORLD. I literally drew hearts in my notebook around this one. This turns your website pages into variants and allows you to edit specific elements like copy, button color, placement, etc. Once you’ve made your edits, you can set up the test that you want to run and Crazy Egg will test the two variants side by side with traffic and give you a readout of what works best. Yes. This.
Crazy Egg. Seriously, the ability to A/B test so easily makes this an incredible platform. Even though the heatmaps aren’t as robust as with HotJar, they’re enough to give you an idea of how to use this tool—and that’s really enough for this platform.
Where They Both Fall Short
This is funny, but they both fall short on the add on to the thing they excel in!
HotJar has a “forms” option, seemingly as an addition to it’s Funnel Tracker, so you can see where people hesitated on the forms. In theory, this is awesome because it can offer insight into why people aren’t moving through your funnel as you would like them to, but it just kind of sucks right now. There are a lot of limitations with HotJar’s ability to track forms—it has to be part of the html on the page, so for instance, an email signup form can’t be tracked.
The Crazy Egg Editor is kind of a mess. It’s SUCH a cool concept and they market it to people as an option to make site changes without a developer, which is kind of nice, but it strays from the point. It would be better to slant it as a way to make changes for the winning A/B tests without making a permanent site change. It’s a bit difficult to use, not super smooth, but once it’s up and running it will be really valuable to have for people following the data.
The Ideal Scenario between HotJar and Crazy Egg:
If you have the cashflow, and you’re super invested in this, here’s what I really think would be a winning way to utilize both:
Start by building your funnel and watching all the landing pages in HotJar
When you see where people are dropping off, run A/B Tests through Crazy Egg to see if you can improve the drop off.
This is why I chose HotJar as my overall winner. When I thought about the process of getting to a win, Hot Jar’s funnel information, easy to use data, and feedback options makes it SO easy to figure out what’s wrong and where people are dropping off—then you can literally just ask them why!
Crazy Egg’s A/B test is better for testing hypothesis on how to solve problems that arise, which is awesome, but HotJar is geared towards rooting out specific issues and their causes.
Watch our video for even more thoughts!
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Ps. if you’re interested in improving your user experience and you don’t know where to start, please reach out! We’d love to get you pointed in the right direction.