November 29th, 2017 Instructional Design

Anyone who creates online courses looks for ways to improve them. Using HotJar (or a similar tool) is one way to gain valuable learner insights.

If you are not aware of HotJar, it’s a tool that allows you to see user behavior on your website. In addition, it has some nifty polling features so your visitors can provide you feedback anonymously.

While there are other tools that are similar, my experience has only been with HotJar. The platform allows you to make intelligent decisions. We use it here at LearnDash in a variety of contexts and find that the data we are able to obtain is valuable in helping us improve our entire offering.

Probably the best part about something like HotJar is that it doesn’t require any technical skills to configure. So, there is nothing to be intimidated by if you don’t consider yourself to be techncially savvy. A few clicks and you’re good to go.

But back to the point at hand: using HotJar for your online courses.

Insight into Learner Behaviors

One thing that you will instantly get access to when using a tool like HotJar is insight into how your learners are interacting with a course. You can then compare this to your reporting data to see if there are any improvements that can be made.

For example, if you see that only 15% of learners move beyond lesson four, then HotJar could give you more details about where learners are clicking when they are on that lesson. Maybe you have a link including in your content that takes them to an entirely different page and it’s not opening in a new window. That’s a problem that you can easily fix, and otherwise wouldn’t have known about.

The polling feature is also quite slick in HotJar. You could use it in a variety of ways, but perhaps one would be to ask your learners what subjects they would like to learn next. Or, you could even use it to ask them to quickly evaluate your course(s).

While polls themselves are nothing new, what we have found is that user engagement with HotJar polls is incredibly high. It’s unobtrusive and can be completed in a just a click or two. We are always surprised by how many responses we are able to get in such a short amount of time.

Whether you use HotJar or some other tool, the main point is that you should be looking for ways to gather data related to your learning program so that you can improve it over time. Data-based decisions can have a profound impact on course effectiveness, and even on your revenues if you are selling courses.

Justin Ferriman photo

About Justin Ferriman

Justin Ferriman started LearnDash, the WordPress LMS trusted by Fortune 500 companies, major universities, training organizations, and entrepreneurs worldwide for creating (and selling) their online courses. Justin's Homepage | Twitter

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