Upworthy is the latest publisher to announce that they were shifting their focus from measuring traditional metrics like pageviews and unique visits to “attention minutes” as a method for determining content success. The announcement mentioned that other major websites are also moving toward measuring the total timed engagement a user spends with a site: Medium, YouTube and Chartbeat are all examples. With YouTube, they monitor the “Time Watched” of videos on the site.
Measuring time is becoming a more popular indicator of how successful marketing efforts are for a B2B marketers. A 2012 survey from TopRank Blog reported that 39% of B2B marketers use “time spent on website” to measure how effective their content marketing on their website. Furthermore, CMO.com, an Adobe blog, named time spent on site as one of the top 5 B2B content marketing metrics in 2013.
Attention minutes take two factors into consideration. The first is the “Total Attention on Site” which gives Upworthy an overall view for the average time a user is spending on their site over the hour/month/week/etc. The second metric is “Total Attention Per Piece” which takes the same metric but specifically targets a specific piece of content, such as each individual article or blog post.
While Upworthy takes a variety of different factors into consideration to get their unique attention minutes metric, B2B marketers can use “Time on Page” in Google Analytics to get a good overall view of the average user time spent on the website. However this metric can be inaccurate if a user leaves their computer open to the page. Even though the time counts, they aren’t actually navigating through website.