- Is recording visitors legal?
- Should I inform visitors that I record them?
- Is visitor data safe with Smartlook?
- How to install Smartlook on a website?
- How to install the Smartlook tracking code?
- Installation for developers using NPM
- Test if Smartlook is up and running.
- What does the Smartlook player look like?
- How many websites can be recorded using Smartlook?
- Does Smartlook record all visitors?
- Supported Browsers
- Will Smartlook slow down the site?
- Referrals and affiliate program
- How to change user credentials?
- Recovering a lost password.
- Managing the billing.
- Changing the package.
- Where to find the invoices?
- Associating more websites to one Smartlook account.
- Inviting users to access a Smartlook account.
- How to work with a lot of recordings?
- Switching between recordings of different websites?
- Why are the videos shortened?
- What is the Visitor Journey?
- Toggling visitor recordings, recording of mobile devices, forms and IP anonymization
- Preventing certain visitors from being recorded.
- How to identify a recording from a registered customer.
- What can be done with a recording?
- How to share a recording?
- Does Smartlook record iframes?
- Is it possible to export/download the videos of the recordings
- What are Heatmaps for?
- How to create Heatmaps?
- Share Heatmaps
- Advanced URL settings for Heatmaps
- Troubleshooting for Heatmaps
- Parallax scrolling in heatmaps
Smartlook is a visitor recording tool that allows you to see your website through the eyes of your visitors. Let’s say, you have an online shop and you want to see what your customers see when they go to your website, where they click, which products get their attention. You can install the Smartlook in your website and start tracking the visitors and see what they are doing on the website, how long they spend on the website, where they click, which pages they browse, what contents they see.
The Smartlook can be used in many ways. It can be used as a tool to enhance the user experience, improve the quality of the support that you can provide, complement your traditional analytics tool by giving you a more qualitative perspective of how visitors are using your website and be a quite valuable Marketing resource that will boost your sales and get your conversion rate to skyrocket!
Improve your user experience, facilitate the detection of problems in the website and find out what to improve. This will make your website more appealing to the public and bring a major positive impact to your business.
Yes. Tracking behavior and movement of your visitors using Smartlook is completely legal, just like using Google Analytics or other services for tracking visitors on your website. From a legal point of view, it’s important to be especially careful in case you are recording form inputs because visitors might fill in some sensitive personal data. You can disable the recording of form inputs in the Smartlook settings to ensure you don’t record any personal data of your visitors.
Personal data protection laws may vary across the world. The European Union, where Smartlook is based, is generally very strict about personal data protection. Some countries might not require you to inform visitors or to include by name the 3rd parties that collect personal data of your visitors. We recommend consulting with a lawyer to get detailed information about your legal obligations regarding personal data collection.
The data of your visitors is safe with Smartlook. We created several security steps to protect the sensitive data of your visitors.
- The access to the visitor recordings of your website is possible only after logging into your Smartlook account. To log in you must know fill in the login credentials (email associated with the Smartlook account and the password).
- The data entered in form fields, which is marked as a password or “sensitive”, is not recorded, nor is it sent to the Smartlook server.
- We have created a tool that allows you to block any elements of your site that might contain sensitive information.
- Communication between the Smartlook script on your website and our server supports SSL / TLS (Secure Sockets Layer / Transport Layer Security). Likewise, the SSL / TLS secure communication is set up between the Smartlook servers and the Dashboard (the interface you use to access the recordings).
Information about prices can be found on our Pricing section.
There are two ways to install Smartlook on your website:
1. Your website is built on a CMS platform.
In this case, we have integration for all the major CMS platforms like WordPress.org, Prestashop, Joomla, etc…
For more info on CMS integrations & plugins, please see our tutorials.
Just check if your platform is among the supported and then proceed to follow the corresponding tutorial.
2. Your website is not built on a CMS platform or the CMS platform is not supported.
In that case, you can copy the code that you received in your email once you registered with Smartlook.
You can also find the code right after you log in the dashboard for the first time. In case you have already installed the Smartlook on your website, just click “Done, show me the recordings“.
Alternatively, the code can be found in Account > Sites > Tracking code.
Just copy the code into the HTML of your website or header of the theme between the tags <head> and </head>.
NOTE: If you install Smartlook using the code, please be careful to paste the code exactly as it is. Make no changes to it, otherwise, the script will not work.
Import and initialize Smartlook recorder into a page.
Smartlook runs in your website in a kind of silent manner, since it does not interact with users nor does it display any signs that it is functioning, therefore, it is not very easy to understand whether or not it is properly installed on your website.
However, there is a method that you can use to test smartlook:
Open your website in another browser or in an incognito window and just mess around, do some clicks and then leave the website. If the video appears in the following up to 10 minutes then congratulations! Smartlook is up and running.
In the Smartlook player, you can see a lot of information. The typical aspect of the Smartlook player looks like this:
And in the caption below, there is a description of the several numbered elements that you can see in the figure:
- The visitor recording view
- The URL of the browsed page in the recording
- The time of the recording and the referer information
- The notes in the recording
- The different sub-pages the visitor browsed during the session
- The tags in the recording
- The play button
- The play speed button
- The “skip inactivity” button
- The play bar, where the green represents the activity periods and the white represents the inactivity periods
- The button to add notes
- The buttons to tag, add star, share and delete the recording
- The visitor info: name (by default it is a randomly generated number, but you can display the real name by identifying your recordings), geolocation (by country), device, operative system, browser, screen size and IP address
- The visitor journey: See a playlist with all the visits (sessions) of the same visitor
- To see the visitor journey you need to upgrade to Standard or Power package
The number of websites that you can associate to your Smartlook account is not limited. Visitors will be recorded from all your websites until the number of sessions per month or recordings in storage reaches the limit.
If you want to know how to start recording visits from additional websites, please see how to associate more websites to one Smartlook account.
With Smartlook we try to record all your visitors. However, there are several cases where your visitors may not be recorded:
- You reached the limit of recordings for the current month. For more information about the limits of the different Smartlook packages please check our Pricing page.
- You have reached your limit of parallel recordings. If you have FREE package, you can record up to 10 visitors at the same time. if you have more than 10 visitors viewing the page simultaneously, then the remaining visitors will not be recorded. For more information about the limits of the different Smartlook packages please check our Pricing page.
- If a visitor leaves the page and returns within 30 minutes, then it will be recorded in the same session. Even despite being shown as 2 different visits on another analytics tool.
- Visitor uses a browser that is not supported. Check our list of supported browsers.
- Visitor is using a browser plugin to block ads and scripts.
- Visitor opted out of Smartlook.
- Smartlook does not record visitors in websites that are in a test environment (localhost), restricted websites, intranet websites or websites located on private VPN networks. The website must be fully accessible from the internet so the visitor recording data can be retrieved to our servers.
- In case you see a visitor in Google Analytics but still don’t see a recording in Smartlook Dashboard, that means the visitor is still browsing your website. Finished recording will be displayed up to 30 minutes after the visitor leaves your website
List of browsers that we can record:
- Chrome 15+
- Firefox 20+
- Internet Explorer 11 (*)
- Edge 13+ (*)
- Opera 23+
- Safari 6.2+
- Yandex 14.12+
- Mobile Safari iOS 7+
- Mobile Chrome iOS 7+
- Latest Chrome + Firefox (Android)
(*) browser does not fulfill all the required specs properly, recordings may seem different or broken on some websites. This is not affecting the user experience when browsing the website.
Page speed measuring tools don’t always give an accurate picture when analyzing scripts like Smartlook. You can often see same issues with Google Analytics script. The Smartlook script loads asynchronously, meaning it doesn’t prevent the rest of your website from loading while it downloads. The warnings you see in various page speed tools don’t mean Smartlook script slows down your site.
The load time of our script is negligible on most websites. Since all the data flow proceeds between the Smartlook script and our server, your server is, thus, not burdened with extra data. We take site performance very seriously and use constantly optimize Smartlook script to improve load time. We also use various tools and services like CDN (content delivery network) to load our script super fast everywhere around the globe.
If your site has some non-standard elements or too many complicated elements, contact us and we will send you a report about your site page load.
You can get extra storage space for every new customer you recommend to us. More information you can find on your Dashboard under the referral section.
You can also join our affiliate program and receive a 20% lifetime reward from every customer you refer to us, no changing percentage or hidden terms in small print. This way you can set up your business using our service.
You can change your user credentials on your account settings, under the user tab and by editing your profile. There you can change the e-mail address associated with your Smartlook account and also change the password.
You can recover your Smartlook password by going to the Login Page and click “I forgot my Password”.
Then you will be redirected to a page where all you have to do is fill in your e-mail address associated with your Smartlook account and click the button and you will be sent an e-mail with a link to reset your password.
The management of your billing settings can be done in your account settings, under the tab “Billing”. There you will be able to purchase a paid subscription or to extend your current subscription if you already have one, check your billing history, and access your billing profile, as well as updating your billing information.
If you have a free account and you want to upgrade to a paid premium package, all you need to do is to click the “Activate Premium” button on the top right corner of your dashboard screen.
If you already have a Premium package and you want to change it, you can do it under your billing settings and select the Packages tab, to be able to see all the available Packages.
You can pay either for a monthly subscription or for a yearly subscription (for the yearly subscription you get 20% discount per month) and you are also free to choose between 3 payment methods: Credit Card (except American Express), PayPal and Bank Transfer.
You can see your invoices under the Billing History section.
To add additional websites to your Smartlook account do the following:
On your Smartlook Dashboard, use the “Switch Website” button and click to “Add site”. You can also do it in your account settings here.
A window will pop up, all you have to do is to insert the name of your website – it could be the name of the website or even the URL, it is up to you (you will probably see that by default one project whose name is the e-mail address associated with your Smartlook account – you can change that name if you want to).
After the new website is created, you can get the Smartlook code for it (every website associated with your Smartlook account should have a different Smartlook code) by clicking on the Tracking Code.
A window will pop up with the Smartlook code for that new website and with one single left click you can select the whole code and copy it to the clipboard.
In case your new website is not hosted in one of the several CMS platforms that we support, just copy the code into the HTML of your website or header of the theme between the tags <head> and </head>.
NOTE: If you install Smartlook using the code, please be careful to paste the code exactly as it is. Make no changes to it, otherwise, the script will not work.
In order to remove a website from your Smartlook account:
- Use the Switch website button and click to manage sites.
- You can also do it by going to the project area of your account settings.
- Select the website you want to delete and click to edit.
- Then you will be in the Project management page, where you can click to delete it.
- After that, you will see a pop-up window with a warning. If you really want to delete the associated website from your Smartlook account, click on yes to confirm.
In order to invite users to have access to the website’s Smartlook videos, do the following:
Go to the Users tab of your account settings and click to Invite a user.
Then, on the invitation page, fill in the User e-mail (e-mail address where the invitation will be sent). You have the option to add a written message to the invitation and then choose which websites will be assigned to the user.
In case you want to remove a user then:
- Go to the users’ area of your account settings.
- Click the Edit button right next to the user you want to remove.
- Under the user settings, you can either opt to remove the user or to revoke his access to the websites assigned to him.
The key to an effective work with the recordings is to watch them in the proper context. Filter your recordings by the URL of visited or unvisited pages. You can then filter visitors who did not complete the order (e.g. they did visit the URL of the shopping basket checkout page, but did not get to the URL of the “thank you for your order” page) and see what visitors did just before they left. For more information on how you can do this, please check lesson 1 of Smartlook School.
You see the recordings of the different websites separately. On the Dashboard, you can see the videos for the selected website/project and switch between websites by using the Switch website button.
By default, the video player skips the inactivity period, therefore, the video only plays for the periods represented in Green on the bar (the white areas represent inactivity periods). The inactivity periods are when the visitor is away from the computer/mobile device or when he has your page open, but he is in another window seeing another page, while the activity periods correspond to mouse movements, scrolls or clicks.
In order to see the whole duration of the video, simply deselect the Skip Inactivity button. Then the video will show the whole duration of the visit, even with the inactivity periods included, which will show a static screen, with nothing happening.
Smartlook has a feature called Visitor Journey that allows you to see different recordings of the same visitor in a row, like a playlist. Every time a recording ends, the player has the option to play the next video of the same visitor. This feature is available in Premium packages.
Under website settings, you are able to switch ON and OFF the visitor recordings, the recording of mobile devices, the recording of data entries and the anonymization of the IP addresses of the visitors.
Smartlook can block some specific visitors from being recorded by inserting a specific IP address in the IP blocking settings.
The IP blocking section will show a list of the IP addresses that are not being recorded. This is particularly useful for IP addresses of the website owners or employees of the company thus ensuring that all storage space is filled solely with recordings from real customers (visitors). If you want to block your own IP address, you can do it by clicking the button “Add my IP”.
There is a way to identify registered customers and get their customer info displayed on the recording. You can use our API to connect the smartlook with your customer database so, everytime a registered customer logs in on your website, the Smartlook will be able to retrieve the information from the database.
In order to see the visitor e-mail and other details, the Smartlook must be connected with the customer Database. It is quite simple. Send it to your developers and it will take them just a couple of minutes. The names and e-mail addresses presented in the API page are just an example and must be replaced by variables from the database.
It is possible to add notes (1) to the recording. On the player, there is a button to add notes. The button will generate a note and one can write in the note and after creating the note it is also possible to edit it or delete it. Notes can be added to several moments of the recording. In the dashboard, it is possible to see which videos have notes and the content of the notes can be seen both in the player and in the dashboard by hovering the mouse over the note.
It is also possible to tag the recordings (2) in the player by either adding an existing tag or create a new one (if there are no tags created then it is necessary to create a new one). The number of tags that can be added is unlimited and those can be seen in the bottom of the player. This allows for a more precise filtering of recordings when using the advanced search.
The option to star the recordings (3) is particularly useful for marking some important recordings and make it as a favorite so they can be more easily found in the Dashboard. Stars can be added to recordings either in the player or in the dashboard.
Apart from the options mentioned above, it is also possible to share (4) and delete (5) a recording, in the player.
It is possible to share the visitor recordings of Smartlook by clicking the share button in the recording. This will generate a public link to the video that can be shared with everyone via e-mail or on social media as well by simply copying the link and sending it or sharing it. The share recording option can be used either in the player or in the Dashboard.
In order to unshare a recording that has been shared previously, you need to click the share icon, and on the pop-up you will see an option to disable the public link.
It is not technically possible at the moment for Smartlook to record iframes, but we are working on bypassing and fixing this issue in the future.
There can be several factors that may cause the Smartlook recordings to not retrieve the correct CSS style of your page.
- The website could be in a localhost environment, in an intranet website or within a VPN network. In order to function properly, Smartlook has to be installed in an entirely public website so all the Data can be retrieved through a proxy into our servers.
- The recording is too short (ends after 1 second) and the connection was not established, therefore the CSS style of your Page is not retrieved.
- Your website has dynamic CSS. The solution for this is to create a new stylesheet under a different name but keep the old stylesheets, so older recordings will still be able to display the proper styling.
- You can have some firewall which is blocking the Smartlook proxies. Please check your web security settings and make sure you have the header access-control-allow-origin:* enabled.
If you are not getting any recordings on your Smartlook account, there can be several reasons for that:
- You do not have the Smartlook installed on your page, or it was incorrectly installed. Please make sure you install the Smartlook correctly.
- If you are using a CMS such as WordPress and you updated your website/theme and the plugin got deleted. If that is the case, you need to reinstall it.
- You have your recordings disabled (toggled off). If that is the case, you can toggle them on again.
- Visitors are still browsing the website. The recordings will be made available a few minutes after your visitors leave the website.
If you have noticed some discrepancies between the visitor counts on your analytics tool and the number of visitor recordings in Smartlook please see Does Smartlook record all visitors?
The Heatmaps are an analytical tool that allows you to see a more graphical representation of your page in terms of clicks and scrolls. With the Heatmaps, one can have the perception of which parts of the page visitors click/scroll the most (hot zones) and the least (cold zones). With our Heatmaps that are generated from the visitor recordings, it is possible to see where visitors click and how far they scroll down the page. Do they click where they are supposed to? Do they scroll far enough to reach the content they should see?
To create Heatmaps for a website:
Access the Heatmaps section on the Smartlook Dashboard.
Click the Add heatmap button.
On the window that pops up, insert the details such as the name of the Heatmap and the URL of the page from which the Heatmap shall be generated (Advanced URL settings can be used).
Choose the number of views, the type of visitors in the Heatmap and if you want to show data from previous visits. In the end, click on Create Heatmap.
The Heatmap has been generated. It will now start counting the visits from future visitor recordings on the designated page. It may take a while before data is ready to be shown. You can also Edit, Share or Delete the heatmaps.
The Heatmaps can be shared by generating a public link that can be sent to anyone that gives people access to view the heatmap. After generating the public link, it can be copied to the clipboard and easily sent.
In order to unshare a heatmap that has been shared previously, you need to click the share icon, and on the pop-up you will see an option to disable the public link.
Use advanced settings for your page URL and add Heatmaps for subpages of your website, which the basic settings would not allow to display otherwise.
This is the basic setting for the URL match. It is useful for tracking one specific page. In this match, any parameters beyond the URL and the protocol are ignored.
Use this match in case you want to track a URL with specific parameters and protocol.
Use this match in case you need to insert only a part of the URL to show the required Heatmap.
For instance, on multilingual websites: domain.com/uk/pricing in which you want to see Heatmaps across all the languages of the website and not just one specific language.
In case you added a Heatmap that does not track any visitors, we recommend that you verify the following cases:
- Make sure that the page was indeed visited by any visitor. In case you do not block your own IP address in Smartlook, you can test it by visiting it yourself.
- Make sure you have the Smartlook code installed.
- Make sure you entered the correct URL of the page when creating the Heatmap
- In case you are using Smartlook on more than one website under one account, make sure that you created the Heatmap for the correct website
It can happen that Google Analytics or other analytic tools report a greater amount of visits than the amount depicted in the Heatmaps. This can happen for several reasons, all those are addressed in the question: Does Smartlook record all visitors?
We do not support parallax scrolling at this moment. Heatmap of your page using parallax will not be displayed correctly. We work on adding this feature soon for your convenience.