Web Optimization: How to help customers help themselves


“The innovation of how the buying process works really has helped us. Not only to help our existing customers, but really gain those new customers through that process and innovation,” explained Matt Ruggle, Ecommerce Manager, Great Northern Corporation, at IRCE 2014.

Linda Taddonio, Co-founder and Ecommerce Strategy Officer, Insite Software, and Matt sat down with MarketingSherpa Reporter Allison Banko to discuss a new phase of site optimization: click tracking.


Click tracking is a tool that marketers can use to identify an eye-path on their webpages. Hand-in-hand with heat mapping, analysts can recreate the customer experience on their site.

The Great Northern Corporation uses this technology to answer the question, “How far down are customers really going on the page?” They use this information to strategically place content such as videos, tips and the live chat feature.

With click tracking, it’s “really in the essence of helping customers help themselves,” Matt explained.

By analyzing click tracking and other on-screen analytics, the team uses these tactics to truly discover what their customers were doing on a page.

Using these tools, Matt noticed surprises during these tests. He recognized popular options and identified areas that customers struggled with. These observations not only affected the site design and challenged the team to redesign the way people got to the cart, but it also spurred a change in the physical design of the product.

For Matt and his team, this technology offers the opportunity to understand the customer experience and optimize based on feedback from real experiences.


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  1. Hi Jessica,

    Even without sophisticated tracking devices (I used one several years ago as a tester for a new shop website) it seems that hotspot tracking is filtering down to the individual webmaster level. Knowing where your visitors are likely to be looking, compared to where you thought they might look is getting more important.

    So long as we don’t have to go back to the days of attention getting flashing banners, I’ll be happy piggy backing off the research of others.


    Steven Lucas

  2. Internet Marketing says

    Great article, in the Netherlands we like to use Internet Marketing to promote our products and services, for us it’s a great way for finding new customers.

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