Page view

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For the town in South Africa, see Pageview, Gauteng.

A page view (PV) or page impression is a request to load a single HTML file (web page) of an Internet site.[1] On the World Wide Web, a page request would result from a web surfer clicking on a link on another "page" pointing to the page in question. This is in contrast to a hit, which refers to a request for any file from a web server. There may, therefore, be many hits per page view since an HTML page can contain multiple files—images, CSS, etc.[2] On balance, page views refer to a number of pages viewed or clicked on the site during the given time.[3]

Page views may be counted as part of web analytics. For the owner of the site, this information can be useful to see if any change in the "page" (such as the information or the way it is presented) results in more visits. If there are any advertisements on the page, the publishers would also be interested in the number of page views to determine their expected revenue from the ads. For this reason, it is a term that is used widely for Internet marketing and advertising.[4]


The page impression has long been a measure of user activity on a website. However, the activity is not necessarily associated with loading a complete HTML page. Modern programming techniques can serve pages by other means that don't show as HTTP requests.


Since page views help estimate the popularity of sites, it helps determine their value for advertising revenue. The most common metric is CPM. It stands for 'Cost per thousand'(the M is the Roman numeral for 1,000)[5] and it is commonly used metrics to measure page views divided by the thousands, that is, cost per 1000 views, used for the ad rates and thus, the less CPM is, the better deal it offers to advertisers.[6] However, there has been a growing concern that CPM is not as trustworthy as it looks in the advertising market because, although, with CPM arrangement, everyone who visits a site makes publishers’ money, for an advertiser’s view, CPM is being challenged in comparison to CPC or CPA in terms of adverts’ efficiency because visiting does not mean clicking the ads.[7]


The preferred way to count page views is using a website such as Google Analytics. They can measure the number of pages on any site and therefore, it helps people to receive a rough estimate of page views on web sites.[8]


Despite a wide range of use of page view, it has come in for criticisms.


Page view can be manipulated or boosted for specific purposes.[9] For example, a recent incident, called 'page view fraud', compromised the accuracy of measurement of page view by boosting the page view. Perpetrators used a tool called 'a bot' to buy fake page-views for attention, recognition, and feedback, increasing the site's value.[10] As a result, some people already started building alternatives to measure audiences, such as "Ophan", saying that the page view is becoming passe.[11]


Although back in the print days, writers did not know how many readers read their publications, page view encourages them to obsess over amassing as many page views as possible, as many page views can be considered success.[12] However, as a result, more sensational headlines wound up being a mainstream to receive more profits regardless of the quality of publications. Since this trend reflects materialism, there is a strong voice against page view obsession.[12]

Humans vs. machines[edit]

Fake page views can reflect bots instead of humans.[13]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Doyle, C. (2011). A dictionary of marketing. Oxford: Oxford University Press. ISBN 9780191727962. 
  2. ^ "Hits or pageviews?". Retrieved 8 June 2013. 
  3. ^ Carey, E. (2012). "Page View versus Page Visits - Atlantic Webworks Perspectives". Atlanticwebworks. Retrieved 28 October 2014. 
  4. ^ Bennett, L. (January 10, 2012). "Metrics that Matter & the Death of the Page View". Chartbeat Blog. Retrieved 10 January 2012. 
  5. ^ Heisel, C. (November 30, 2008). "What does CPM stand for?". Chris Heisel. Retrieved 30 October 2014. 
  6. ^ Scocco, D. (March 27, 2008). "How Much Should I Charge for my Advertising Space? : @ProBlogger". Retrieved 30 October 2014. 
  7. ^ Johnston, M. (2013). "CPM vs CPC vs CPA: How to Sell Display Ads". Retrieved 30 October 2014. 
  8. ^ Agarwal, A. (2008). "Measure the Number of Page Views on any Site". Digital Inspiration. Retrieved 30 October 2014. 
  9. ^ Holiday, R. (2012). "What is Media Manipulation?—A Definition and Explanation". Forbes. Retrieved 30 October 2014. 
  10. ^ Seidel, L. (2014). "The Pageview Fraud, PLEASE READ! by Lilyas on deviantART". Retrieved 30 October 2014. 
  11. ^ Fischer, M. (March 18, 2014). "The Pageview is Passé: New Metrics Emerge to Measure Audiences". American Journalism Review. Retrieved 30 October 2014. 
  12. ^ a b Miller, R. (2013). "The Problem With Our Page View Obsession, Media Redux". Vol. 36 no. 3. p. 32. 
  13. ^ Akhtar, Omar (July 31, 2014). "No more fake page views from machines! Google Analytics introduces "bot-filtering"". The Hub. Retrieved August 20, 2016. 

Further reading[edit]