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Measure How your Web visitor's eyes move over your Web Pages

John Alexander


Have you ever wished there was some way to calibrate or measure the effectiveness of your Web site based on what visitors actually see and experience?

Here are a few important questions to consider:

  • How much of your important Web copy do you think is really being read by Visitors?

  • What elements are your Web visitors really looking at on your Web page?

  • Where does their eyes first begin on a page and where do their eyes hesitate or stop?

  • What do your Web visitors see on your page but do NOT click on? Would it be interesting to measure if you could?

  • What do visitors NOT click on, simply because they never see it?

All interesting questions that you may wish you had an answer for. Well, now you can have an answer to these observations and many others too.

Think about these ideas.

  • Would it be useful to really be able to graphically measure how effectively you write articles?

  • Would it be useful to be able to look at your work and analyze exactly what people are looking at?

  • At what point do people stop scrolling down to read a page?

Thanks to a heat mapping process it is actually possible to measure all of these things and more. One very well test subject is examining how people read the news. How their eyes move over the headlines, where their gaze stops, which links they see, which links they don't see, which links they choose to click on and much more can all be captured using test subjects.

Here is an excellent article written by Eyetrack Project Managers Steve Outing and Laura Ruel as they observed 46 people for one hour as their eyes followed mock news websites and real multimedia content. 

In this article they offer some excellent observations and tips based upon their research.

Here is an example of a color legend to help explain the meaning of a heat map.

Here is a recorded video of actual eye tracking sessions. Fascinating to watch!

Are you interested in having your Web page analyzed using a specific demographic test group. One company that offers these services is called They provide tools and services to measure eye-movement, as your test group looks at your Web pages to examine what people see, what they read, what they don't read, what they glance at, what they skip over, and what they never see.

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About John Alexander
John Alexander is Co-director of Training at Search Engine Workshops offering live, SEO Workshops with partner Robin Nobles as well as online
SEO training. John is author of an e-book called Wordtracker Magic and co-author of the Totally Non-Technical Guide for A Successful Web Site. John is also an official member of the customer support team at

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