In the ever-evolving science of website analytics, here comes another reason to carefully examine your site visits and campaign results.
Analytics guru Jakob Neilsen suggests that a recent spike in visits to your site may have nothing to do with your latest online promotion. Instead, it could be an example of “lumpy user behaviour”. His research suggests that we all go through high and low cycles of web browsing and engagement which can skew site analytics. Neilsen writes:
“…this means that you can’t conclude that exposure to a specific stimulus causes a certain behavior, even if you observe increased occurrences of this behavior after the exposure. As I’ve always said, correlation doesn’t prove causation because hidden covariants might exist. We now know that user activity bias is one such covariant — and that it’s very strong.”
Here’s the full article from the Neilsen Norman Group.