Definition of metrics

Visits: The number of sessions within a given time period. A visit is defined as a sequence of consecutive page views without a 30-minute break, or continuous activity for 12 hours. They most commonly consist of multiple image requests, however visitors that bounce can consist of a single page view.

Visitors: The number of unique people that access your site within a given time period. Non-persistent cookie visitors are counted in total visitors reports. In previous versions of Adobe Analytics, only persistent cookie visitors were available.

Visitors are not exclusively reliant on cookies. Non-cookie visitors are determined using a combination between IP address and user agent.

Comparison of metrics

Daily Unique Visitors higher than Visits: There are several circumstances in which this outcome can occur.

  • Mobile reporting that does not use first-party cookies: Mobile Daily Unique Visitors are much higher than Mobile Visits if your report suite is not using first-party cookies. Almost all mobile devices, especially all iOS devices, are set to reject third-party cookies by default. If you are seeing this outcome in your mobile reporting, implement first-party cookies.
  • IP Pooling: Though not an issue by itself, visitors who do not support cookies and use ISPs that feature IP pooling can further increase unique visitors without visits. Users who do not support cookies are tracked as unique visitors using their IP address as a key component. If the user's IP address changes the visitor could be counted as several unique visitors.
  • Large number of visits cross midnight: This discrepancy is much more common in previous versions of Adobe Analytics. In the current version, both visits and visitors are counted for each day but deduplicated in the total.
  • Visitors that do not accept persistent cookies: This discrepancy is much more evident in previous versions of Adobe Analytics. In the current version, it is mitigated as unique visitors are not solely reliant on cookies. Also note that implementing first-party cookies greatly reduces this discrepancy as well.

Visits higher than Unique visitors: This behavior is much more commonly seen and expected, as a unique visitor usually consists of many visits.

Additional resources