Have you ever looked at your Google Analytics Keywords Report and wondered why there are keywords showing up with 0 visits? Here’s an example from RichmondWiki.org’s Keyword Report on 12/24/09:
Something must be wrong! Right? Well, not really.
Google Analytics “visits” last until the visitor closes the browser or remains inactive for 30 minutes.
In theory, a visitor could have Googled “tacky light tour” and clicked through to the Tacky Lights Tour page via a paid or organic search result. Not finding what she wanted, she returns to Google (within 30 minutes or before closing her browser) and searches again. This time, she searches for “tacky light tour richmond va 2009 west end” and clicks on another result from RichmondWiki.org.
This “second” visit to the site is actually still counted as the first visit in Google Analytics since the original session has not yet expired. However, GA still records the second keyword in the Keyword Report but does not count it as a new visit. Hence, zero visits for some keywords.
To explain it visually, here’s how this scenario would play out: