Days in the Month and website analytics

February’s just finished and it was a bad month for reporting on website progress.

That’s possibly what a lot of people may be thinking anyway. One often overlooked fluctuation factor in Month on Month analysis in Web Analytics data is simply the number of days in the month. February is a prime example where you go from 31 days in January to only 28 in February (except leap years) resulting in an apparent 9.7% loss in traffic.

Use the below numbers as a reference to better understand the month-compared-to-previous-month day count analytics bias to help you better explain your monthly reports:

January: 0.00%
February:  9.7% loss (or 6.5% loss during leap year)
March: 10.7% gain (6.9% gain during leap year)
April: 3.2% loss
May: 3.3% gain
June: 3.2% loss
July: 3.3% gain
August: 0.00%
September: 3.2% loss
October: 3.3% gain
November: 3.2% loss
December: 3.3% gain

Another issue is where those days in the month fall – weekdays vs weekends. On most recruitment websites, Mondays seem the busiest day in my experience. Some sites may rely greatly on those Monday job hunt blues. It stands to reason that some months have more Mondays than others. Bank Holiday Mondays also happen from time to time. The sites have massive reductions in traffic on these days in my ewxperience (although the next Tuesday becomes the surrogate Monday!).

So – March should be 10% up on February – approximately – and is the first month this year with those golden five Mondays!!!

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