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Page Impressions vs. Hits vs. Unique Visitors – Which are best?

Page Impressions,hits,unique visitors-Effectively using Site Stats ~

Page Impressions,hits,and unique visitors, are three of the most commonly used terms people pull out when discussing their website effectiveness.What's the best way to gauge the effectiveness of sites? Depends on your view point. What is the purpose of your site? Is it being fulfilled? Often people will state their site statistics to demonstrate the effectiveness of their site, some of these stats can be an effective tool; while others are as useful as - well we have a rather rude farm saying for that here in Canada. Read on to find out which statistics tell you what, and whether you really want to disclose them.

Page Impressions, Hits or Unique Visitors-What These Mean

Tech Talk:Page Impressions

Page impressions, or page views, are the number of times a page is loaded by a viewer. Many advertisers will ask how many page views, or impressions, your site gets per month. When you click a link to go to a new page, the request is counted as one page view, Even returning to the previous page by clicking the back button on your web browser counts as another page view. If you are selling advertising on your site, the number of page views are the stats advertisers want to know about- even more important, are the number of page views per visitor.
Page views per visitor, gauge the 'stickiness' of your site, or how long people remain on your site looking at other pages. A high number of page views per visitor means your visitors may be browsing several pages during their visits. Since most advertisers want their ads viewed as many time as possible, mentioning your page views per visitor, can entice advertising bids on your site.

Tech Talk: Hits

Hits in the thousands, can sound impressive to the uninformed. In the 90's, hits were valid statistics. However, with the introduction of image files, using hits to gauge the effectiveness of a site, has gone the way of the Dodo bird, Here's why you may want to reduce your hits, and keep your number of hits 'under your hat'.
What is a hit? Hits are generated each time a file is called from the server, a file with four pictures, for example will generate 5 hits-one for the file and one for each image. A single user viewing one page with 100 pictures,could potentially generate 10010 hits in as little as one minute. Many web site hosts will charge you according to the number of hits generated by your website,-even providing helpful tips to assist you in spending your money! If you are getting a large number of hits compared to page views,or unique visitors, you may want to look into ways of reducing the number of hits on your site. A large number of hits compared to page views or unique visitors, may be an indication of poor site design,and can decrease your return on investment. So what are the are the true bragging rights of a site?

Tech Talk Unique Visitors

Unique visitors are your real bragging rights, of these three terms, especially when combined with multiple page views per visitor. Each time a person using a different computer, visits your site in a 24 hour period, it counts as a unique visitor. Unique visitors are determined by the IP address of individual computers,or sometimes by cookies. An IP address acts like an online fingerprint for each computer Even if a large number of people visit your site from one computer, it will only be counted as one visitor, If your blog gets 1000 unique visitors per day, it can mean 1000 different computers were used&n to visit your blog within the 24 hours period.
Want to talk about how popular your blog is? Tell people how many unique visitors you have-now that's impressive!

What's your favourite Free stats counter? What do you like best about it? Drop me a comment with a link to your article about your favourite stats counter to be included in my stats counter review. Need help increasing your blog or site ROI? Contact me or leave a comment with your specific problem. This blog runs on your questions! Today's blog is dedicated to Deborah R, who asked-‘What is a page impression?’ and to the group of business owners who have been asking how to increase their page hits. Next post will examine the real question -‘How to increase your Unique Visitors’.
Suzanne

1 comment:

Olov Forsgren said...

Hello Suzanne, great article as usual.

It's not only if people are working on the same computer they are registered as one unique visitor within 24 hours. Many visit your site from their job and if they are working in a big company and are sitting behind a company proxy server they all visit your site with the same IP address. That's the reason why I lost  interest in having visitor counters on my sites. If you get a lot of traffic during working hours, you can assume that the count of unique visitors is not correct. You can have many visits from the same proxy server.

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