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What Is the Average Time Spent On a Website? [+ How to Improve It]



What Is the Average Time Spent On a Website? [+ How to Improve It]

According to a Pew Research Center survey, 85% of Americans say they go online on a daily basis, with 31% reporting that they go online “almost constantly.”

With people spending more time online than ever before, it’s important that your website is optimized for visitors to browse and stick around. But longer isn’t necessarily better. You want visitors to stay on your website because they’re enjoying the content and experience — not because they can’t find the information that they’re looking for or can’t complete a desired action, like making a purchase.

In this post, we’ll cover what a “good” average time on page and average session duration benchmark is, and how to improve these metrics on your website.

Average Time On Page Benchmark

According to Contentsquare’s 2021 Digital Experience Benchmark report, the average time on page across all industries is 54 seconds. While you can use that as a benchmark, meeting it doesn’t necessarily mean your average time on page is optimal.

Like page views, bounce rate, and other website metrics, average time on page is contextual. What’s “good” depends on the type of website you have, the industry you’re in, and the web page you’re tracking, among many other factors.

For example, in their 2021 Digital Experience Benchmark report, Contentsquare analyzed data

from over 20 billion user sessions from across the globe. They were able to track average time on page across 10 industries, and found major differences.

average time on page benchmarks by industry shows B2B has highest average time on page

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B2B, for example, had the highest average time spent on page with 1.37 minutes. This was at least 20 seconds higher than the other industries. The industries on the other end of the spectrum were grocery and energy, with an average time spent per page of 44 seconds. This gap emphasizes the importance of using an average time on page benchmark that’s specific to your industry.

A “good” average time on page also depends on the type of content. For example, you ideally want visitors spending more time on your product pages and blog posts. In fact, in a survey by Databox, 45% of respondents said that the average time on page for their blog posts is 3-5 minutes. A higher time on page indicates that the content is relevant, easy to read and understand, and targeted at the right audience.

On landing and checkout pages, however, higher time on page could mean that there are obstacles to conversion. The content, CTAs, or form might be confusing, for example.

Average Time on Page Google Analytics

Google Analytics is one of the most widely used tools to measure average time on page, among other performance metrics. It’s therefore important to explain how Google Analytics calculates this metric.

Google Analytics tracks average time on page by measuring the difference between the timestamps of hits. That means if a user lands on a web page and then closes their browser window or tab, or types another URL into their address bar, their visit is not counted.

So average time on page is calculated from the non-exits and non-bounces only, which is a smaller percentage than the total hits for a page.

Average Time on Page shown in Google Analytics dashboard as 14 minutes 50 seconds

That’s why this average is typically higher than average session duration, which we’ll talk about more in the next section.

Google Analytics also keeps tracking time on page even if the user’s browser window or tab is hidden. So while this metric is not the most accurate, it is still a valuable indicator of how engaging and effective your content is.  

Now that we have a better understanding of how to calculate and benchmark the average amount of time users spend on individual pages, let’s take a look at how to figure out how long visitors are spending on your entire website.

Average Time Spent on a Website

Average time spent on a website, like average time on page, is dependent on a range of factors. Industry, the type of website, and even the device that users are on impact this average.

For example, Statista calculated the 20 most popular websites worldwide as of June 2021, by time per visit. Users spent approximately 22 minutes and 44 seconds per visit on Google, the most popular website, and only .54 minutes on, the 20th most popular.

To calculate how long visitors are staying on average on your entire website instead of individual web pages, look at average session duration.

Average session duration measures the average length of sessions on a website. Google Analytics begins counting the length of a session from the time the user lands on a site until the user exits the site, or is inactive for a predetermined amount of time. (In Google Analytics, a session can last for up to 30 minutes without a user interacting with your pages.)

That means a session can consist of a user viewing a single page or viewing multiple pages, and can range anywhere from a few seconds to a few hours.

Average session duration is calculated as: total duration of all sessions (in seconds) / number of sessions.

This is a key difference between average time on page and average session duration. Whereas average time on page excludes visits that end in exits or bounces, average session duration counts all bounces as zero seconds. This can lower the average session duration significantly if your website has a high bounce rate.

The Google Analytics dashboard below, for example, is tracking the same website as above. So while its average time on page last week was 14 minutes and 50 seconds, its average session duration was 1 minute and 37 seconds.

Average session duration shown in Google Analytics dashboard as 1 minute 37 seconds

To improve average session duration, or the average time spent on a website, try the best practices below.

1. Decrease load time.

Decreasing load time can help reduce your site’s bounce rate, which can significantly improve average session duration.

In a study commissioned by Google and conducted by 55 and Deloitte, decreasing mobile site load times by just one tenth of a second resulted in significant decreases in bounce rate: 0.6% for homepages, 5.7% for product listing pages, and 1.9% for product details pages.

bounce rate improvement by content type when load time decreased by one tenth of a second

Using a CDN, optimizing images, reducing redirects, and compressing files are just a few ways to decrease load time. To learn more, check out our full guide on optimizing your website speed.

2. Optimize your navigation.

Website navigation enables visitors to quickly and easily find the information they’re looking for, like a blog post, and important information that they weren’t looking for, like pricing info. A good navigation system can improve the chances of visitors taking action and browsing your site longer.

When designing a navigation menu, follow these best practices:

  • Put your most important items at the beginning of the navigation menu.
  • Use navigation labels that align with your type of business and are SEO-optimized.
  • Include a search box.
  • Add navigation links in the header, sidebar, and footer of your site.

3. Add internal links.

Another way to enable visitors to easily find and read relevant content on your site is adding internal links. Internal linking makes your site easier to navigate, which increases the chances that readers look at more content and stay on your site longer.

Here’s an example of a blog post with lots of internal links encouraging visitors to dive into these subtopics in more depth:

how to improve average time spent on time: blog post with 7 internal links

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4. Improve the readability of your posts.

When evaluating the readability of your content, you need to consider what the words are on the page and how they look.

To improve the flow of the post, remove any instances of passive voice, shorten long sentences or paragraphs, and add transition words. To improve the look of the post, try adding headings, subheadings, and bullet points to break up chunks of texts. Also make sure you’re using an easy-to-read font and accessible color scheme.

A tool like Yoast SEO can help automate this process. In fact, it has a readability analysis tab where it provides actionable feedback to make your post or page easier to read.

how to improve average time on website: Yoast SEO's Readability analysis helps improve readability of content

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5. Add images and videos.

Adding multimedia content, like images, videos, and infographics, is another way to improve the readability of your content. Not only do they break up chunks of text — they can also illustrate complicated ideas (like APIs, for example) and appeal to different types of learners.

how to improve average time on site: add images to illustrate complex topics like APIs

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Images and videos enhance the overall user experience and encourage visitors to stay on the page longer.

6. Optimize for all devices.

According to a study by Perficient, 68.1% of all website visits globally in 2020 came from mobile devices and only 28.9% and 3.1% came from desktops and tablets, respectively. However, desktops drove 46.4% of total time on site globally and tablets drove more total time on site than mobile devices.

This emphasizes the importance of having a fully responsive website that’s optimized for all devices. Sizing and styling buttons, SVGs, images, and fonts are especially important when creating a responsive site. For more best practices, check out our complete guide to responsive web design.

7. Use exit intent popups.

Exit intent popups appear when a visitor is about to bounce from a website. These contain an offer or message that’s designed to keep them on the page. Briogeo, for example, has an exit intent popup encouraging visitors to take their hair quiz before leaving the site.

how to improve average time on site: Briogeo's exit intent popup encourages visitors to take quiz before leaving

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While this won’t convince every visitor to stay, it may convince some, which will ultimately help improve your average session duration.

Encouraging Visitors to Stay on Your Site

Average time on page and average session duration are excellent indicators of how engaging and effective your content is and whether you’re attracting quality traffic. Now that you understand what these metrics mean and what benchmarks to use to evaluate your performance, you can focus on optimizing your site to have visitors browse for longer.

Editor’s note: This post was originally published in March 2014 and has been updated for comprehensiveness.

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What It Is & How to Build an Effective One



What It Is & How to Build an Effective One

In the business world, professionals are obsessed with tactics because they can help them meet their short-term goals. But if all you do is focus on the short-term, you won’t spend enough time or energy figuring out how you can succeed in the long-term.


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the second key persona for modern marketing operations leaders



the second key persona for modern marketing operations leaders

This 4-part series presents a framework that helps rationalize the roles and responsibilities modern marketing operations leaders are taking on. This installment summarizes the framework briefly, and dives into how MOps leaders are now “orchestrators.” 

In case you missed it, part 1 is here.

Inspiration for this framework

Two years ago, marketing technology pioneer and editor Scott Brinker outlined the four key responsibilities of marketing technologists, summarized here.  

That work espoused the view that you could be both a marketer AND a technology leader. They are not mutually exclusive! It was my inspiration for this framework, explaining how today’s MOps leaders are instrumental for marketing and business success.

X-Axis:  A range of skills from a focus on technology to creativity and arts

Y-Axis: A range of decision-making skills, ranging from emotional to rational approaches

The resulting grid captures four MOps archetypes or “personas.” MOps leaders exhibit characteristics across all parts of this framework and will operate in multiple quadrants, similar to Brinker’s frameworks.

Modernizers – Are most likely to be the “original” technologists, constantly modernizing their martech stack.

Orchestrators – Are the closest to Brinker’s Maestros and the focus of this article. He described this archetype in 2020 as the “Operations Orchestrator — MAESTROS who design and manage the workflows, rules, reports, and tech stacks that run the marketing department.

Psychologists – Are now increasingly responsible for “reading customers’ minds,” i.e. interpreting customers’ interest through intent data and digital engagement.

Scientists – Are constantly testing and evaluating. Experimentation is their specialty.

Orchestrators: Leaders of the band

Now that you’re familiar with the framework, let’s dig deeper into the Orchestrators!

I’ll start with a personal story. My exposure to orchestration started with 8-straight years of practice in violin and trumpet during my formative years. Each week was literally a blur of private lessons, group lessons, orchestra and/or band practice. I probably spent as much time with music directors as I did with my family.  

It was painfully obvious to those conductors when we hadn’t prepared or practiced. Moreso, we would get – literally – an “earful” from the conductor when we were not listening to the other instrument sections. If we were not coordinating our efforts and timing, the outcome was awful for anyone listening.

Source: Unsplash

This orchestration metaphor is powerful because there are multiple levels for MOps leaders:

  • As a project management team within marketing, and often as a conductor across external agency partners.
  • As a cross-function business partner and primary contact for IT, compliance, and legal, in addition to the traditional MOps role of achieving marketing/sales alignment

Notably, all marketers have to be project managers for their own tasks/deadlines. They must be aligned with overall campaign and program timelines. 

However, as organizations scale they are more likely to have dedicated project management teams to handle coordination across the specialist teams within marketing. The orchestration responsibility may include timeline, scope, and capacity trade-offs even after campaign briefs have received approval. 

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The orchestration responsibility multiplies when agency execution teams are delivering on individual tactics and media buys. Last year, Optimizely described these evolving orchestration duties as a “transformative shift and approach towards how marketing synchronizes their teams, content, channels, workflows, and data!”

I believe the shift is even more impactful, with orchestration benefits being felt beyond marketing. The highest value “program orchestration” responsibilities occur when MOps leaders are representing marketing’s interests in enterprise-wide programs with other functions within the organization, including product, compliance, and IT. Examples of orchestration duties with these other key functions can include:

  • Product teams – Coordinating campaigns with major product feature/functionality launches, and managing brand standards.
  • Legal/Compliance – Overseeing compliance with Can-Spam, GDPR, and CCPA, and customer preference and data privacy initiatives that may be initiated by a marketing touch-point. 
  • IT/Procurement – Technology stack management, vendor evaluations and negotiations, platform integrations and data management.

All of this departmental and cross-departmental coordination requires skill sets that can be analogized as the difference between a chamber orchestra (marketing) and a full symphony. It’s the highest level of conducting across the enterprise. 

MOps leaders are holding individuals and teams to target timelines while managing the scope of a particular campaign and business initiative. They do this while also overseeing targeting of customer and prospect segments.

In order to accomplish this complex segmentation and coordination, MOps leaders are now responsible for cross-functional data – embodied by the modern martech stack imperative: integration. Integration across systems has been the #1 issue for marketers since the modern marketing tech stack started exploding in the early 2010’s, but software and solutions providers finally listened. A tipping point was reached in 2020. Marketers reported that we were finally working within an integrated, multi-system environment, according to a CDP Institute member survey analyzed here.  

Continuing with the orchestration analogy, the conductor is the integration “synchronizer,” deciding if/when the data flows across the stack. The sheet music is the data model standard showing how to map common attributes. 

However, just because we now have this more integrated environment does not mean our work is done. The instruments do not play themselves (yet!) and they require configuration and deliberate training to play effectively — both individually and in groups. 

Training was one of the top responsibilities for marketing ops leadership, ranking it in the top 5 of MOPS tasks by percentage of work, according to the 2022 MarTech Salary and Career Survey, published jointly by MarTech and (free, ungated download here). conducted by chiefmartec.

In the 2020 version of that same study, training was highlighted as one of the top two responsibilities for many of the primary marketing technologists personas, and 91% of operations orchestrators reported that training and supporting technologies were among their top priorities.

MOps leaders are never done

Finally, under the category of “MOps leaders are never done”, the last several years have also forced a whole new category of orchestration duties – a combination of conducting, training, and martech growth: marketing work management.

The largest growth (67%) over the last several years was in the category of “work management”, according to the 2022 edition of the Martech Landscape. Established entrants such as Adobe expanded with the acquisition of Workfront, while newer players like Trello and Monday gained traction.  

Although this was already a prevailing trend BEFORE the pandemic, the hybrid/remote work environment brought on by the last 2+ years forced these project management and agile-planning tools to the forefront.  The marketing work management category grew to over 1000+ tools, according to the State of Martech 2022

Source: State of MarTech 2022 – and Martech Tribe

MOps leaders are Maestros

In summary, modern MOps leaders are indeed Maestros. They are skilled orchestrators, conducting a symphony across multiple levels. They lead:

  • Omni-channel campaigns within marketing and across business functions
  • Integration across an ever-growing, integrated martech stack
  • Training and deployment as one of their primary responsibilities 

Editor’s note: In Part 3 of this 4-part series, Milt will expand on MOps leaders’ growing role as Psychologists. For background on this framework, see Part 1 of this series here

Opinions expressed in this article are those of the guest author and not necessarily MarTech. Staff authors are listed here.

About The Author

Milt is currently Director of Customer Experience at MSI Data, an industry-leading cloud software company that focuses on the value and productivity that customers can drive from adopting MSI’s service management solutions.

With nearly 30 years of leadership experience, Milt has focused on aligning service, marketing, sales, and IT processes around the customer journey. Milt started his career with GE, and led cross-functional initiatives in field service, software deployment, marketing, and digital transformation.
Following his time at GE, Milt led marketing operations at Connecture and HSA Bank, and he has always enjoyed being labeled one of the early digital marketing technologists. He has a BS in Electrical Engineering from UW Madison, and an MBA from Kellogg School of Management.

In addition to his corporate leadership roles, Milt has been focused on contributing back to the marketing and regional community where he lives. He serves on multiple boards and is also an adjunct instructor for UW-Madison’s Digital Marketing Bootcamp. He also supports strategic clients through his advisory group, Mission MarTech LLC.

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How to Calculate Your Web Traffic to Increase Website Revenue



How to Calculate Your Web Traffic to Increase Website Revenue

You want to know how to calculate website traffic. That’s smart since your website’s value is both the traffic AND the revenue it can bring in.


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