I'm in the process of developing an application and I would like to integrate a user experience data collection tool into the application it self, so that I could evaluate the user behavior. I googled about this and I've no idea where to start on such a tool. I would like to develop my own tool, so if I anyone could guide me on a good article or a tutorial, it would be greatly appreciated.

Please forgive me if this post is not relevant to this forum. I would gladly delete it, if suggested.

  • What tool you need depends on the job you need it to do. "Evaluate user behavior" casts a pretty wide net. Do you have specific questions about user behavior? What platform is this? Mobile app? – Luke Smith Nov 20 '17 at 2:23
  • I almost flagged this, but that last line actually made me change my mind. Good job :D – Kitanga Nday Nov 20 '17 at 2:38
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    @KitangaNday sorry if I wasted your time, bt I'm badly in need of help. :) – Imesh Chandrasiri Nov 20 '17 at 5:28
  • It's no biggie, tell me what's the issue? – Kitanga Nday Nov 20 '17 at 5:38
  • My requirement is to develop such a framework from scratch. I found a framework for mouse tracking, called simple mouse tracker which has ton for features. Any such free tools to build a user experience data collection program from scratch? – Imesh Chandrasiri Nov 20 '17 at 8:23

There are a couple of analytics tools you could either copy (bad idea) or integrate (better idea). They are fairly easy to integrate so don't worry.

  • Google Analytics: Google product so you can expect fast load times and definitely a large community. This is definitely a must. You can get realtime info on users on your site, which pages they are viewing, how they got there, bounce rates, even ecommerce (check if people have converted and how much you've earned), what device they are on, the OS, country, etc.
  • HotJar: Another analytics tool that offers cool tools such as heatmaps and integration of other popular analytics (or user feedback tools). You can have heatmaps with Google Analytics, but I think it will need some sort of add-on.

Now, if you want to create a tracking tool from scratch, there are a couple of things you can do. As @EdwinLambregts said in the comments section, you can start by tracking clicks. This method can also tell you how far down the page the user went (you can check the onhover event of the button, since people at times hover over links/buttons as they progress down the page).

Of course before this you'll need a method of getting the data:

  • First the server:

  • Now, what you track (Remember to tell the user that they are being tracked and offer a way for them to opt out. If they find out that you are tracking them that could damage you badly)

    • The user (have an id for the user, so that you can tell who they are. You can save this in a cookie or in localStorage)
    • Page views
    • Button clicks
    • Country (using a service like ipinfo)
    • Returning users (using the id)
    • How long they spent on your site
    • Checking which site the user came from to get to your site (this will require you to have access to the HTTP Header, to be more specific, using the HTTP Referer)

One more thing, if you use Firebase Database you can setup live or real time data much more easily. Since it can update your dashboard (if you create when) when things change in the database tree.

  • Appreciate the reply kitanga. What I mension was, I would like to develop such a framework from scratch! I would like to get a reference tutorial or a guide on to develop such a framework! – Imesh Chandrasiri Nov 20 '17 at 8:21
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    @ImeshChandrasiri Why not start by saving which links/buttons are being clicked? Start small/easy first, then work your way up. – Edwin Lambregts Nov 20 '17 at 15:18

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