Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Nielsen pushes 'time spent' over page views

If time is money, then "time spent" might be more money for publishers. That's the thinking of Nielsen//NetRatings as it started ranking sites by time spent, and started de-emphasizing -- though not eliminating -- the oft-maligned page view. That reshuffled the top spots among large web properties, as AOL shot to first in total minutes for May, while placing fifth in unique visitors. Nielsen said it was adding the new metric, along with "total sessions," to deal with the complexity of measuring sites with AJAX or streaming videos. Consultant Heidi Cohen said publishers would continue to use page views for monetizing ads, because it allows comparisons between sites better than time spent, which is more of a "supplementary factor."

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