New metrics highlight audience attention, not page views

By focusing on meaningful articles and not just catchy headlines, social analytics company Chartbeat seeks to change the way publishers measure content.

The page view is dead. Or at least it should be.

I’ll admit it—I’m obsessed with the page view. It’s an easy way to track month-over-month growth and get a quick snapshot of how well a piece of content is performing.

In this click-bait world where all it takes is a catchy headline to get clicks, the page view just seems so empty. Even the once-heralded click through rate has proven to be a busted metric. There’s more to valuable content than just attracting page views.

Analytics outfit Chartbeat thinks it has the page view beat. The company has gained Media Rating Council accreditation for its method of measuring real attention—the time spent interacting with a page—rather than just a click.

If all it takes is a catchy headline to get someone to visit a site, you can start to see why so much online publishing has become so terrible.

The Next Web outlines Chartbeat’s value proposition:

If publisher business models start to revolve around the time users spend looking at ads or reading sponsored content, rather than just raw clicks, then not only are advertisers getting a fairer deal, but publishers are incentivized to focus on high quality content rather than volume of content, which can only be good for their audiences.

Chartbeat’s metrics will measure things like “viewability,” “active exposure time,” and “lifetime exposure,” which have all been accredited by the Media Ratings Council.

Now, when you publish that awesome native ad you spent so much time working on, you can actually find out if people liked the content itself or that catchy headline of yours.

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