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3 Great Reasons to use Microsoft Clarity

If you signed up to try Microsoft Clarity, you might be happy to know that it is finally available for everyone.

Clarity is a free analytics tool by Microsoft that helps you see how visitors interact with your website. What makes Clarity special are its 3 key features, the ability to record and playback user sessions, show you heatmaps of the most concentrated interaction, plus show a ton of insights via the Clarity Dashboard.

Session playbacks

Clarity can record user sessions (visually similar to screen-captured video), which you can playback, showing user mouse movements, page scrolling, and mouse clicks.

The image below, taken from a recorded session, shows a user was trying to click on icons shown in a screenshot on my Windows 10 Maintenance page. So, maybe I need to review how I show content and clarify that the screenshots are samples only?

Clarity recorded user session clicking

By watching how site visitors move around your pages, you can see which areas of content they find interesting and which areas they completely miss or ignore.

Heatmaps

The second reason to try Clarity is the Heatmaps function. Heatmaps are a static image showing you the parts of a web page which drive the most engagement. If looking through other charts and statistics is not your thing, the heatmaps quickly show you where everyone is clicking. The example below shows where a visitor has tried to interact the most.

Microsoft Clarity user session heatmap

Dashboard

The Clarity dashboard shows a plethora of visitor stats and insights, which you can filter based on the usual things like location, browser, and OS, all the way down to rage clicks, dead clicks, excessive scrolling, cursor movement, resized pages, and plenty of other stats to obsess over and more importantly learn from.

Microsoft Clarity Dashboard
Clarity Dashboard
Microsoft Clarity Dashboard filters
Clarity Dashboard Filters
Microsoft Clarity Dashboard advanced filters
Clarity Dashboard Filters (Advanced)

Thoughts

Since I first posted about Clarity in December of 2018, it has taken quite a while to finally be able to use it. We already have website analytics tools like Google Search Central and Microsoft Bing Webmaster Tools, to name just a couple.

The wait for Clarity has been well worth it, though. Being able to playback a user session (a first for me) in Microsoft Clarity is very convenient and a breath of fresh air for web developers. It’s almost like looking over the user’s shoulder!

Within the first couple of days of using it, I could see a user in France clicking on screenshots of Windows icons and expecting impossible results (something I can learn from), to a patient visitor in Australia misspelling a search query but managing to find the content anyway via other pages.

It’s great to see Microsoft continue to innovate, and it’s always nice to get some free tools to make life easier. You can access Microsoft Clarity (beta) via the new Microsoft Bing Webmaster Tool, or sign up and get it at https://clarity.microsoft.com/.

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