Collecting and storing of visitor session data
To help you understand how visitors are interacting with your website, Hotjar records visitors sessions. When you are actively recording visitors, the Hotjar script initiates a websocket connection which sends the following information to the Hotjar servers:
- HTML changes that happen while your visitor uses your pages
- Mouse movements
- Mouse clicks
- Scroll movements
- Keystrokes only for whitelisted input fields
- Browser viewport size changes
Each event tracked is saved in our cloud database using a time stamp which is later used to replay back the events in sequential order. The Hotjar script will track your visitor as they visit different pages using a first-party cookie, enabling you to playback the entire session in a single Recording.
Hotjar can record both static and dynamic pages, shopping carts and logged in areas.
Hotjar will suppress keystroke data except for input fields which have been whitelisted. You can also suppress data within specific text fields or all on-page email addresses/numbers which might contain sensitive information about your users. When suppressing data, the Hotjar script does not record or send the data to our servers and asterisks "***" or 1s "111" are sent instead of the actual text.
Understanding Your Recordings
The first thing you will notice when playing Recordings is that each of your visitors' actions is represented by a different color on the playback timeline. Here is what each color represents:
- Red: The visitor clicks an element on your page.
- Yellow: The visitor either reloads the current page or navigates to another page on your site.
- Grey line: The visitor scrolls on the current page.
- White: The visitor interacts with a form element, such as a text field or a select dropdown.
- Pink: The visitor changes their screen-size.
- No color: The visitor is idle / not interacting with the page.
An example of a Recording playback timeline with various colors representing a visitor's actions on your page