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Average session duration in Onlineshops


Freddy Czaja

What ist the Average session duration?

The session duration or average time on site indicates how long a user has visited a website. For a higher number of users, the average duration of the session duration is calculated. The session duration can be viewed in Google Analytics.

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Why is the session duration so important?


For online shops, is the session duration important to be in the top spots of search engines with products and categories in order to reach as many customers as possible and in the end to sell products. Since Google is by far the most important search engine, we treat it with priority in this article.

Users' session duration rating can be used by search engines like Google to find out how relevant product pages or category pages are for specific search queries (keywords), so session duration can also affect ranking. It can be used for every single page of the online shop, but also for the online shop throughout.


To evaluate a product page X in the online shop, look at the average session duration in google Analytics and compare it with that of other internal product pages. In this evaluation, the bounce rate must still be considered - it indicates the proportion of visitors who come to one page and then leave them again, without calling another page.
If you now have the key figures session duration and bounce rate, look next at the ranking (for the most important keywords) of product page X. Using the key figures session duration, bounce rate and ranking in the search engines, one can now find out whether the product page X is relevant and the search query is answered by users.

Example 1:

Product page A has an average session duration of 2 minutes, a bounce rate of 20% and a ranking for the most important keyword in second place. It can be assumed that product page A is relevant as all values ​​are very good.

Example 2:

It may well be that product page X has a low average session time of 45 seconds and still has very good rankings for certain keywords. It is very likely that searches on the product page will be answered quickly and the user leaves the site again. The low session duration and the high bounce rate contradict the assumption that a long session duration and a low bounce rate are always good for the ranking in search engines.

Example 3:

The category page X has an average session duration of 4 seconds, a bounce rate of 80% and the most important keyword has a ranking of 35. Here it can be assumed that the category page has an error or is simply not relevant enough for the search intentions of users. An optimization would be useful.


+ A long session is very good.
+ Bounce rates should be as low as possible.
+ If product pages have very short session durations, the pages should be checked.
+ If product pages and category pages have high bounce rates, they should be checked.
+ Category pages usually have a shorter session duration because they are only distributors to the products, high bounce rates often indicate an error.

In summary: To rate product and category pages in online stores, the duration of the session should be considered together with the bounce rate and the current ranking. Only in this way can it be found out whether the page is relevant for certain keywords and whether the search intensions are answered by users.



In order to make product and category pages even more relevant for consumers, they should primarily have very good content. Product pages should definitely have excellent product lyrics, provide lists of product details and, if possible, offer multiple images per product. Also, product pages should not be dead ends, but teaser other products (below), have cross-linking or have a lateral navigation, which leads to similar products. But here it all depends on the structure of the online shop. Companies that have enough power can also offer product videos on the product pages, they also contribute to lengthening the session - if they make sense.

The design of an online shop basically has a great contribution to the success of an online shop. So it is quite logical that good design improves the session duration, as consumers feel more comfortable. The same applies to the user interface design and the resulting user experience. All areas of an online shop should function intuitively and support the consumer. Navigation is the most important, as it is the bridge to the categories and products.

Of course it is also very important that product and category pages shows what title tag and meta description promise in the search engines. If they do not match the landing page, a short session duration and high bounce rate can be expected.

In order to be able to calculate the session duration precisely, your own IP should be excluded in Google Analytics.

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