In this week’s SEO Pro Tip, we try to get a deeper understanding of dwell time, its impact on SEO, and how you can increase dwell time for improved search rankings.
What is Dwell Time?
“Dwell time” is the amount of time that elapses between you clicking a search result and returning back to the SERPs.
If a user clicks the back button immediately after landing on your site, it’s a sign of a low quality page and Google is going to penalize you for it. Google and other search engines use “dwell time” to evaluate a site’s content quality.
Here’s what SEO expert, Brian Dean from Backlinko, has to say about dwell time:
“Google pays very close attention to dwell time: how long people spend on your page when coming from a Google search. This is also sometimes referred to ‘long clicks vs short clicks’. If people spend a lot of time on your site, that may be used as a quality signal.” – Brian Dean, Founder of Backlinko
Here are a few “dwell time” examples and how they could be interpreted:
- 2 second “dwell time”: The user probably didn’t find what they expected from your site (more on this later) and went back to the SERPs looking for better content.
- 2 minute “dwell time”: The user found your content pretty useful and stuck around a couple of minutes to read it.
- 15 minute “dwell time”: The user found your content super-useful and was heavily-invested in what you had to say.
One way to increase dwell time is to publish long, informative content that engages your visitors to stay on the site longer.