Dwell time is a relatively simple concept but one that looms large in current media debate. Is it a basic metric or a valuable indicator of consumer engagement? It has assumed greater importance as mobile and online media budgets have grown and is increasingly used as a parameter within programmatic buying systems. However, it has also always been used as a metric in other media. Does its meaning and understanding apply consistently across media? And with the growth of 'second-screening' and the explosion in consumers' exposure to advertising how can it best be used and how much weight should it be given within campaign evaluation and performance measurement?

Definition

A measurement of the duration of exposure to a media channel or specific media content.

Key insights:

1. Enhanced video experiences can increase dwell time

Luxury car brand Lincoln used a 360-degree digital video that could also be viewed in virtual reality to promote its 2018 Navigator SUV. This allowed consumers to explore the inside of the vehicle and see how it performs in different conditions – a superior experience to a normal test drive. Positive results included increases in website dwell time among people who engaged with the 360/VR experience.