Marco Diversi Resources Discover Yandex Metrica The #1 Free Hotjar Alternative

Discover Yandex Metrica The #1 Free Hotjar Alternative

Discover Yandex Metrica The #1 Free Hotjar Alternative post thumbnail image

Yandex Metrica is the analytics tool from Yandex, the biggest Russian search engine in Russia with more than 60% of the internet share.

The reason why I am talking about Yandex Metrica is that is a free analytics tool that you can use no matter where you live.

You don’t need to learn Russian or having a website with Russian traffic mainly. Yandex is providing webmasters tools and this amazing analytics tool for free to everyone.

If you are looking for a Hotjar alternative and or a Google Analytics alternative this tool is worth to take into consideration.

Yandex Metrica will give you most of the features you will get on Hotjar for free.

For instance, you will heave heatmaps of your site and sessions replays of your users for free and for a lifetime.

If you don’t want to spend money in Hotjar, Yandex Metrica is the best free alternative to Hotjar, and here in this article, we are going to unveil all the main features and how Yandex Metrica could help your website stand out of the crowd.


Getting Started With Yandex Metrica

It is very simple to start with Yandex Metrica, what I suggest you do before starting with Metrica is to create a Yandex webmaster account.

Once you have the webmaster account you want to add your site/s and then verify that you are the owner. This is a simple process and I usually pick the .txt record on my DNS provider that is managed by Cloudflare.

Once you have your domain verified you can go ahead and add a tag in Yandex Metrica. Tags are basically your websites.




yandex metrica add a tag


Drop your website name and the URL of the website. Then once that is done you can play with the switches and enable additional features.

Honestly, I like to have them all ON. I am installing a powerful tool so I want to track as much as possible with no regrets.

For content analytics, you will need to pick an option when it comes to collecting the data. I like to have the JSON option enabled here.

I found it more lightweight and it requests fewer HTTPS requests from your site and is a little faster.


yandex metrica initial settings


At the end of this pretty quick setup, you will be presented with your personal tracking code to add on any page that you want to track on your website.

If you are a WordPress user the best way to do it is to go in:

Appearance > Theme Editor > footer.php

Once you are in the footer.php file of your website, just copy and paste the given script at the end of the footer.php before the last closing tag.

This will make sure that the script will be loaded on all the pages of your site.


yandex metrica lightweight script


Now you are done and you will be ready to keep track of everything that happens on your website thanks to Yandex Metrica, and here we are going to list some of the best features of this powerful analytics tool.


Yandex Metrica Main Features

Most of the features you will find for free on Yandex Metrica can be found for a lot of money with software like Hotjar.

If you don’t know what is Hotjar, in a few words is a software that will allow you to see mouse movements and heatmaps of your sites.

You will be able to see how the users interact with your website and also you can see exactly what they are doing thanks to replays.

If you are cheap like me Yandex Metrica is the free Hotjar alternative you were looking for. In fact, you will have unlimited data forever and completely for free.

As you can see from the picture below, the Hotjar Pricing is definitely high. If you have a website with 20.000 pageviews day you will have to pay $89 a month.


hotjar pricing


Now you know that you could save up to $600/mo or more depending on your traffic using Yandex Metrica, you must be happy to be landed on this article.

Hotjar is probably a little more complex and thorough than Yandex Metrica but the end results are pretty similar so it’s worth it if you are using it instead of Hotjar.

If you still don’t trust me and you think that Hotjar is a better solution, you will get a completely free trial using the button below.




Without further ado let’s dive in the top features of Yandex Metrica.


Yandex Analytics

Yandex Analytics or also called Yandex Metrica is a powerful and completely free to use analytics tool you can use in an alternative to Hotjar.

Hotjar is one of the most popular analytics tools when it comes to website heat maps generation and session recording.

Unfortunately, Hotjar costs a lot of money and not everyone will be able to afford it.

This is when it comes to Yandex Analytics that combined with Google analytics will offer the best understanding of the user behavior on your site for completely free.


Yandex Metrica Webvisor

The most interesting feature of Yandex Metrica that makes it stand off the crowd on Google Analytics is the Yandex Webvisor.

The Webvisor is nothing else than a session recorder that will allow you to watch replays of what users are doing on your site and you will be able to see the:

  • Link Map. (This is exactly where you will be able to see all the links of your website.)
  • Click Map. (This is the detailed map of the clicks on your website.)
  • Scroll Map. (This is the Webvisor detailed scroll map of your site.)
  • Form Analysis. (This is showing exactly how a user interacts with your forms.)

All of these metrics can be seen from the Webvisor of Yandex and they will be reported with interesting and nice-looking charts and graphs.

You can easily use this tool if you click on Maps on the left sidebar.



The dashboard will present some of the most popular reports of your website with awesome charts and tables.

If you want to add more reports in your dashboard you will need to click on the Widget library button or you can even create your own widget to add to the dashboard.


yandex metrica dashboard


Here you will be able to see metrics like the bounce rate of your site with an accuracy better than google analytics.

You will be able to see what are the most visited pages of your site, and the demography of the users that are visiting your sites and so many more things.



yandex metrica 1The reports tab of Yandex Metrica is the juiciest and interesting section of this tool.

Here you will be able to see in a very simple and minimalist way some of the reports generated for free for you from this tool.

You can easily generate and create reports, segments and visit detailed charts and tables regarding the user behavior and traffic on your site.

All of these metrics are completely free to generate and very detailed.

It will take a few days of recording data of your site before you will be able to see some interesting numbers and insights.

You can not pretend to see immediately all of these metrics populating with numbers.

If you have a website with low traffic it might take several weeks to see insights, if your website has a lot of traffic it won’t take very long to be able to generate these reports.



Like I have mentioned before the Maps section of this website is the one that will generate thanks to the Webvisor a lot of precious data.

You will be able to generate all of these reports for 1 day, 1 week or with a custom date range. Yandex Analytics is doing very great when it comes to create segments and sort the events by date.

The maps section is one of the most intuitive and awesome parts of this tool. It will take a few days if not weeks before you will be able to see the graphs generated by the Webvisor.

If your site has not a lot of traffic it will not work until some data are collected and it depends on how much traffic you have.


Session Replays

In session replay, you will be able to see a recorder video screenshot of what exactly a certain user does on your site.

You will need to adjust the settings of your Tag as shown in the picture below. You will need to click on:

Settings > Session Replays > ON on Both.


session replays settings


With the session replays as soon as some data start to arrive you will be able to see a detailed list of users that visited your site.

You will be able to see the length of the visit, time on site, and from where they came from and from what browser and operating system.


session replays list


If you click on the play button you will be able to see a video like the one in the picture below. Here you will be able to see user clicks, scrolling, mouse movements, keystrokes and identify when a user is blocked from making the conversion.

This way you will be able to improve your call to actions and create a better and more user-friendly experience learning from mistakes and user behavior.


mouse clicks and screen record


With this feature, you might be able to discover also the parts of your site that bring more attention and that are worth to keep updated and running perfectly.

This is a feature you will need to pay to have it on Hotjar, and with Yandex Metrica is completely free to use.

Another important thing is that all the data that you will collect will stay yours forever.

With other analytics tools like Hotjar or Statcounter, you will need to pay money to keep the data for 1 year for instance.

Here it will be yours forever for a lifetime.



You can also customize and see exactly the behavior of a specific user.

If you click on the user’s page you will be able to see instantly the first session time and the last session time.

There is an icon on the left that will tell you exactly how the user interacted with your site and on the other side instead, you will be able to set up your goals for every single user.


yandex metrica users


This feature is also free, in fact, there is not even an upgrade button on Yandex Metrica, you will not be able to pay not even if you want too.



If you need a more detailed overview of your traffic you can create unlimited segments.

A segment can be created in any report with the Segmentation button.

For instance, you could create a segment for all the traffic coming from Google, another one from the traffic from bing and another one from Yandex.

Then each of these segments can be segmented again in stuff like bounce rates and so much more.

You can create segments also in Google Analytics so this is nothing new in Yandex Metrica but still, segments are important to figure out your traffic.


Yandex Metrica Final Overview

At the end of this review, we are able to tell that this is a very useful and free tool that not a lot of people are using but that is very powerful.

The biggest PROS of Yandex Metrica is the capacity of creating completely free and awesome reports that you can generate with a few clicks.

They have very powerful filters if you are looking to dive into your segments or in your data.

If your website is not on WordPress s you will have the chance to create alerts within Metrica that will alert you when the website is down.

There are awesome features generated by the Webvisor which is basically an entity that will record all the things happening on your website.

The biggest CONS is that this tool is not known from most of the people so it is left behind and unused by the majority of the people that instead they dump money in costly tools like Hotjar without thinking that there must be a free solution somewhere to generate heatmaps and session replays.

If you haven’t already click on the button below and create your free Yandex Metrica account.





Yandex Metrica is a super powerful tool you can use for free as an alternative to Hotjar.

This tool combined with google analytics will give you precious insights about user behavior on your website.

Something absolutely awesome is that you will be able to see session replays of the session and also you will see almost instantly what keywords got searched on the internet before reaching your site.

You can connect your Yandex Metrica account with your Yandex Webmaster account with one click. Doing so will allow you to have a more detailed overview of your website.

If you are looking for a free and powerful Hotjar alternative Yandex Metrica is exactly what you need to be looking for.

It is a completely free solution that not a lot of people are aware of so I thought that talking about this tool was a nice idea.

I hope that you have enjoyed this article and if you feel like sharing it with your friends please feel free to do it.

Yandex Metrica is free, powerful and one of the top analytics tools available at the moment.


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