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google analytics glossary.

This glossary is designed to help you understand the terms used in web analytics reporting. If you'd like any further explanation, or think we need to add anything, please get in touch.

Users – a user is counted each time your website is accessed from a different device. You can see how effectively your Website is being promoted. Watching the trends in your visits allows you to analyze which aspects of your online marketing are working.

Sessions – when a visitor interacts with your web site, they register a 'session' which ends when they either close the browser, go onto another site or after a period of inactivity (usually 30 minutes). Unique Visits are a measure of non-repeat visitors.

Pageviews – the number of pages on your site viewed by those that visited it. Can help calculate some important KPIs relating to how easy your web site is to navigate.

Unique Page Views - the number of sessions during which the specified page was viewed at least once. A unique page view is counted for each page URL + page title combination.

Session duration – how long the average visitor session is lasting, again can give some important indications towards site performance.

Bounce Rate – a visitor who views a single page on your site then ends the session.

Landing Page – the first page that visitors arrive on when visiting your web site - not always the homepage.

Exit Page – where a visitor leaves your site - not always the contact us form!

Referrals – the previous site that a visitor was on that may have bought them to your site (such as a link from an external site). Search Engines are treated separately from other referrers. Social referrals are from Social Media platforms.

Recency and Frequency – measures how often - if at all - a visitor returns to your site, and if so how long it takes them to do so.

Search Terms – the keywords a visitor has used to search, and subsequently find your website. Google shows 'known' keywords only.

Organic Search – non-paid for search traffic; typically from Google and other search engines.

Direct Traffic– typically all visits that come directly to your site, from either typing in your web address into the web browser address bar, or from a shortcut or bookmarked link.

CPC/Paid Search – CPC means 'Cost per Click' and refers to paid advertising. Google AdWords visits can be tracked here.


Clicks - Count of clicks from a Google search results page that landed the user on your property.

Impressions - How many links to your site a user saw on Google search results, even if the link was not scrolled into view. However, if a user views only page 1 and the link is on page 2, the impression is not counted. The count is aggregated by site or page. With infinitely scrolling pages, such as image search, the impression might require the item to be scrolled into view.

CTR - Click-through rate: the click count divided by the impression count. If a row of data has no impressions, the CTR will be shown as a dash (-) because CTR would be division by zero.

Position - The average position of the topmost result from your site. So, for example, if your site has three results at positions 2, 4, and 6, the position is reported as 2. If a second query returned results at positions 3, 5, and 9, your average position would be (2 + 3)/2 = 2.5. If a row of data has no impressions, the position will be shown as a dash (-), because the position doesn't exist.


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