A leading online measurement service, Nielsen/NetRatings, plans to change its rankings to measure how long users stay on a Web page rather than page views, reports The Associated Press.
Scott Ross, the company's director of product marketing, attributed the change to increasing popularity of online video and technologies such as AJAX and XML, according to Computerworld.
Ross said time spent provides a better measurement of users' engagement with the site, a factor on which advertisers can capitalize. The new information will give advertisers, investors and analysts a better understanding of sites' popularity, he said. It will still measure page views as a secondary metric.
The change will immediately affect some sites, such as Google, which will fall in the rankings because people typically visit often, but spend little time there. AOL's instant messaging feature, however, could boost its ranking.