Clickstream Analysis21st November 2020
A click path or clickstream is the sequence of hyperlinks one or more website visitors follows on a given site, presented in the order viewed. A visitor’s click path may start within the website or at a separate third-party website, often a search engine results page, and it continues as a sequence of successive webpages visited by the user. Click paths take call data and can match it to ad sources, keywords, and/or referring domains, in order to capture data.
Clickstream analysis is useful for web activity analysis, software testing, market research, and for analyzing employee productivity.
two key problems that these data mining techniques solve:
- Predicting customer clicks to create data-driven customer personas, based on their behavior
- Segmenting clickstream data based on user profiles and the actions performed by these users.
Clickstream Data Clustering
Because of the complex nature of the websites and applications these days, it can be difficult to obtain similar clickstreams. Any given user can follow multiple different paths and click sequences. Thus, it can prove to be quite a task to analyze these large numbers of monitored clickstreams.
An easier option in such a scenario would be to group these clickstreams based on their similarity and user profiles. In this way, you can:
- Find customer segments, and
- Identify visitors that exhibit similar interests
Clickstreams can be used to allow the user to see where they have been and allow them to easily return to a page they have already visited, a function that is already incorporated in most browsers. Clickstream can display the specific time and position that individuals browsed and closed the website, all the web pages they viewed, the duration they spent on each page and it can also show which pages are viewed most frequently. There is abundant information to be analyzed, individuals can check visitors clickstream in association with other statistical information, such as: visiting length, retrieval words, ISP, countries, explorers, etc. This process enables individuals to know their visitors deeply.
Webmasters can gain insight into what visitors on their site are doing by using the clickstream. This data itself is “neutral” in the sense that any dataset is neutral. The data can be used in various scenarios, one of which is marketing. Additionally, any webmaster, researcher, blogger or person with a website can learn about how to improve their site.
The growing e-commerce industry has made it necessary to tailor to the needs and preferences of consumers. Click path data can be used to personalize product offerings. By using previous click path data, websites can predict what products the user is likely to purchase. Click path data can contain information about the user’s goals, interests, and knowledge and therefore can be used to predict their future actions and decisions. By using statistical models, websites can potentially increase their operating profits by streamlining results based on what the user is most likely to purchase.
Analyzing the data of clients that visit a company website can be important in order to remain competitive. This analysis can be used to generate two findings for the company, the first being an analysis of a user’s clickstream while using a website to reveal usage patterns, which in turn gives a heightened understanding of customer behaviour. This use of the analysis creates a user profile that aids in understanding the types of people that visit a company’s website. As discussed in Van den Poel & Buckinx (2005), clickstream analysis can be used to predict whether a customer is likely to purchase from an e-commerce website. Clickstream analysis can also be used to improve customer satisfaction with the website and with the company itself. This can generate a business advantage, and be used to assess the effectiveness of advertising on a web page or site.
Most websites store data about visitors to the site through click path. The information is typically used to improve the website and deliver personalized and more relevant content. In addition, the data results can not only be used by a designer to review, improve or redesign their website, but can also be used to model a user’s browsing behaviour. In the online world of e-commerce, information collected through click path allows advertisers to construct personal profiles and use them to individually target consumers much more effectively than ever before; as a result, advertisers create more relevant advertising and efficiently spend advertising dollars. Meanwhile, in the wrong hands click path data poses a serious threat to personal privacy.
Unauthorized clickstream data collection is considered to be spyware. However, authorized clickstream data collection comes from organizations that use opt-in panels to generate market research using panelists who agree to share their clickstream data with other companies by downloading and installing specialized clickstream collection agents.