Web Analytics: Average Time Spent on Site

If you’re tracking your site using Google Analytics, and you’re tracking the amount of time spent on your pages, you’ll probably notice some discrepancy with the average amount of time spent on the site.

I won’t question why many folks consider this metric useless not because they are worthless but because how analytics software measure them. One example is with Google Analytics.

Google did make this explanation. In the past, Google discarded “bounce” visitors or those who visited a page within the site and left without going further. Google thought that by excluding these visitors and measurement of “engaged” visitors or those who visited two or more pages, a better picture of how long visitors stayed in the site will be shown.

I kind of agree to this one since every one can access a site even by accident. “Accidental visitors” tend to leave the site immediately and their numbers can be overwhelmingly huge. So getting rid of these “accidental visitors” when computing for average time on site should be a good choice. However, many would disagree with me and Google Analytics so the original computation has been restored.

Can we have a choice to compute either with or without the “bounce” or “accidental” visitors?