Visits – number of times the website was visited by a user on the condition that at least one page has been loaded. On most platforms, recurring visits will be counted towards the overall calculation. 

*Each visit by a user can imply multiple page views.

Many platforms provide the possibility to define unique visits. 

Unique visits describe the number of distinct individuals who visited the website. This means that, if the same user (using the same browser) visits the page twice, it will be still counted as one unique visit.

Reasons to track Visits

Regular analysis of visits is crucial for two main reasons: 

  1. By tracking this metric marketers can better understand the user’s navigation on the website: initial page, content viewed, exit page. 
  2. Moreover, analysis of visits can also help to understand the user’s behavior: session duration, pages views, bounce rate, etc.

Common variations of Visits

NameDescriptionPlatform
Direct visitsTraffic that comes to your website without any referral source (e.g. other websites). This means that the user directly accesses your website by typing your domain name into the URL field or via the bookmark. 
Direct visits are an indicator of brand loyalty. 
Direct traffic significantly affects your overall SEO score. The higher the number of direct visits the higher the chances of better ranking. 
The goal of every company is to increase the number of direct visits.
Hubspot
New visitsIndicates the user’s behavior when he or she visits the website for the first time. Hence, he or she can only be perceived as a new visitor once. 
Important to distinguish this term from “new users” – a metric that indicates user’s behavior depending on the session. You can be perceived as a new user twice during the course of two sessions.
Google Analytics
Returning visitsMeasures a user’s behavior when he or she visits a website more than once.Hubspot
Direct Returning VisitsMetric that measures a user’s behavior when he or she visits website more than once via direct link to the website (e.g. by typing company’s domain name into the URL field)Hubspot
Conversion Site VisitsIndicates the user’s behavior while he or she is viewing or engaging with the ads on Twitter (that lead to a visit on the link provided on the ad).Twitter

How can tracking Visits help you to become more data-driven?

By tracking Visits marketers can better understand their users behavior and the navigation on their website. 

This allows marketers to analyze the effectiveness of inbound marketing strategy, as well as, the effectiveness of marketing campaigns.

Companies should aim to increase the number of returning and direct visitors. An increase in these metrics signifies that people are connecting with the brand.

Additional information about Visits

  1. 4 Ways to Increase Direct Website Visits 
  2. Google Analytics Made Easy: New Visitors vs. Returning Visitors
  3. Visits, visitors, unique visitors… what are the differences for a web analyst?
  4. Users, visits or page views: Why the unit of analysis matters for your news site