Quantitative VS. Qualitative Web Analytics – Pros, Cons, And How To Combine Them

The significance of data analysis is probably already clear to you if you’re reading this. And you are well aware of how complicated it may be. At the most basic level, we can talk about quantitative and qualitative data. The two types of study, quantitative and qualitative, vary. Their data collecting, methodology, and analytical approaches differ.

The internet is ablaze with professionals and regular people arguing for the superiority of one strategy over the other. Both soft and quantitative research, however, has advantages and disadvantages. 


See the page that follows for details on how to maximize each research methodology, including heatmap types. Additionally, you’ll discover how to blend them for the ideal outcomes.

The basics of numerical information

The methods used by qualitative and the kinds of information they gather are different. Any information that may be expressed as a number, or as quantitative data, is referred to. It is quantitative in nature if it can be measured, tallied, or assigned a numerical value. Use it as a benchmark.

Quantitative variables can be used to determine “how many,” “how much,” or “how frequently.” This makes them numerical. Several instances of this kind:

  • How many people viewed your video?
  • How many apples do you have?
  • How frequently do you go to the cinema?

You would typically utilize a type of statistical analysis to examine these research issues and make sense of this numerical information, gathering, analyzing, and presenting vast volumes of data to spot patterns and trends. Due to its numerical nature and ease of mathematical analysis, quantitative metrics are well suited for this kind of study.

What exactly is a quantitative study?

The gathering and analysis of numerical data are the main objectives of quantitative research. Prior to employing non-numerical info for statistical inference, a researcher must quantify the data.

Statistical measures are used in quantitative research. These include the median, standard deviation, mean, average, t-tests, and regression. This strategy is to gather numerical information to describe a certain event. However, this type of study also highlights significant variations in the following:

  • Demographics
  • Segments or groups
  • Behavioral patterns


It all comes down to the statistics. Quantitative research is built on the collection and analysis of numerical data. The results are quantified and generalized using inferential statistics.

When it comes to the specifics of the digital experience, everything is expressed in terms of statistics or discrete data, like the number of users who click a button, time spent on a website, bounce rates, and more.

Everything about qualitative info

Soft info, as opposed to numerical data, is descriptive. Information that cannot be measured or tallied is described through the analysis of soft data. It alludes to the terminology or labels applied to specific traits or characteristics.

To respond to the why? or how? inquiries, you would go to qualitative information. It is frequently used to analyze unstructured research that lets participants or clients express their actual emotions and behaviors without direction.

Consider qualitative info as the kind of information you might obtain by asking someone why they did something. In-depth interviews, focus groups, and observation are common techniques for gathering information.

How can qualitative information be measured?

Qualitative research is not only a great help, but also provides an opportunity to understand natural behavior. Furthermore, this type of research is extremely interactive and flexible.


The characteristics of users – the behaviors that influence the numbers – are the subject of a qualitative study. The research is descriptive. The soft method is also arbitrary. Instead of emphasizing measurement, it concentrates on explaining an activity.

But what kind of qualitative measurement tools should you take into account?

  • Heatmap tools
  • Interview
  • Eye-camera
  • Session replays

Obviously, you have much more methods at your disposal.

Heatmap tools

With the use of heatmap tools, which graphically describe details by coloring values, it is simple to see and quickly comprehend complicated things. Although current heatmaps are often made using specialist heatmap software, they may also be created manually.

Heatmaps assist you in gathering information about visitor behavior, which you may use to tailor your website to better match visitors’ needs. This might include enhancing conversion funnels, raising conversion rates, lowering bounce rates, or increasing sales, among other objectives.

To put it another way, heatmaps are a quick and simple approach to contextualizing overall usage patterns for any specific web page.

They are frequently used to display clicks and taps on web pages, where each element is color-coded based on how popular it is. Bright red may represent the element that receives the most clicks or taps, whereas elements that receive fewer clicks tend to fade into cooler hues.

There are three main types of heatmaps:

  • Segment heatmap
  • Scroll heatmap
  • Click heatmap

Segment heatmap

Segment heatmap provides for quick data filtering. By ticking or unchecking the appropriate pieces, you may choose the info that interests you. Find the parts of your page that get the most traffic. Check to see if any of the parts are acting otherwise from the rest.

For simple separation, each section has its own color. Examine the traffic’s source in great detail. You may concentrate on a particular operating system, device, browser, or website using the segment heatmap function and learn more about your users directly.

Scroll heatmap

With this heatmap, you can examine how far down your visitors scroll and what proportion of them abandon the page without doing the intended action by using scroll heatmaps.


Scroll heatmap show you where your primary call-to-action should be placed on desktop and mobile to get the most attention. Based on how visitors behave, you may place your elements more effectively.

The warmer the hue on a scroll heatmap indicates that more users have skimmed it. A CTA or other crucial information should be placed according to the data. Where visitors lose interest is shown by a shift in hue.

Click heatmap

It provides you with a summary of the users’ decision-making process. A strong interest signal is clicking.

You may learn more about what drives your visitors by using click heatmaps. Find out which parts of your website are the most popular and which should and shouldn’t be clicked.

No matter how the website is laid up, you will still receive reliable statistics since click heatmaps provide precise click locations.

Additionally, they reveal whether there are any non-clickable items that divert visitors’ attention. Whether there are any areas of the website where visitors may expect to find a clickable element but are instead presented with none. Therefore, early detection of such design defects is tremendously beneficial.

What are the benefits and drawbacks?

Benefits of numerical information

  • Information’s generally quick and simple to gather, and drawing conclusions from it is simpler
  • The sort of findings you get from collecting quantitative info can help you decide which statistical tests to run
  • As a result, your document analysis and presentation of your findings will be simple and less vulnerable to mistakes and subjectivity

Problems with quantitative features

  • numerical metrics don’t necessarily provide a whole picture
  • It might not be conclusive with choppy information
  • Due to the limitations of the study, deeper themes and correlations may be missed

Positive aspects of qualitative features

  • You may investigate context and gain rich, in-depth insights from soft facts
  • It works well for investigative reasons
  • For continuous information, qualitative research provides a prediction component

Problems with qualitative information

  • Due to its reliance on the host’s experience, this method of info collecting is not statistically representative
  • Multiple data sessions may be necessary, which might result in incorrect findings
  • The lesson is that without both, conducting good data analysis is challenging. They both have benefits and drawbacks, and in a way, they balance one another out

Why you should combine them?

Although each strategy has advantages and disadvantages, you are not required to select one over the other.

To respond to the “what” and “why,” examine both types of facts in addition to just numerical or non-numerical ones.

For instance, if there is a bottleneck in your buying process, quantitative research will reveal this. You won’t be able to witness your users actually battling the problem, though. Qualitative research will reveal the causes of the problem that consumers are having.


To determine areas for development, such as entrance pages with poor conversion rates, you need quantifiable data from Google Analytics, this is the “what”. However, you also require qualitative user testing, session records, and customer surveys to identify the problems driving the poor conversion rate (the “why”).

The findings of a heatmap tool are merely quantitative and do not explain “why” a version was successful or unsuccessful. To find the “why” and what needs to be enhanced more, it is crucial to collect user feedback and run A/B tests on everything you launch.


You can better grasp how to combine qualitative and quantitative data now that you are aware of their definitions, similarities, and differences. Never forget the combination. You may them to work for you on your upcoming project.

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