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What is Dwell Time - Definition, Functions and Optimization

Last updated: Sep 30, 2022

Dwell Time
Cover image: Illustration of dwell time which is the length of time a visitor stays on a website page. Check out the brief discussion in this SEO term article.


Dwell time is the actual length of time a visitor spends on a web page before returning to search results in the SERPs.

Theoretically, the longer the dwell time the better, as it indicates that the visitor is enjoying most or all of the content on the page before returning to the SERP or taking other actions on the site.


The function of this metric is to measure how well visitors experience in your site. It can also measure how relevant your content is to the topic or question they are looking for. By looking at the dwell time, you can find out whether the content you create is interesting or not.

The time shown in the dwell time also means how long visitors interact with your content on the page.

Other terms/names

  • Time spent on website
  • Showtime

How to Increase Dwell Time

1. Produce Better Content 

Whether it's in a blog post, infographic, or video, good content should be: Useful (educating), Entertaining (funny, unusual/flashy, surprising), and Accessible (creative and interactive design). Good content will increase the dwell time of your website.

2. Use Strong and Logical Internal Linking

The purpose of adding internal links is to make it easier for visitors to navigate on the website. Strong and logical internal links can help improve the user experience on your website.

3. Use Better Engagement Tactics

So that visitors enjoy and want to linger, provide some content recommendations with related topics.

4. Use a 'Pageless' Scrolling Web Design

Another technique you can use to increase user time on a page is to use a “pageless” design or scrolling system on your web pages.

Dwell Time and Bounce Rate

If the higher the time a user spends on a particular page, it means the quality of the page is getting better, conversely, if the bounce rate is high it means the page quality is poor. Bounce rate is the opposite of dwell time, which is the non-engagement time a visitor spends on a page.

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