Explanation of HitType classifications


The following is a description of the various HitType values that are returned:



A HitType of "Entry" indicates the PLT data is for the user's first visit into the PLT Family of pages. Although Intra-page load times are returned for this HitType, Latency is not returned because there is no start time available for when the page request actually began.



A HitType of "Tested" indicates that the PLT data is for a page in which BrowserHawk performed extended property detection (such as testing for disabled cookies, connection speed, and plug-ins).


Typically extended property tests are performed upon the first page request in a user's session. If you perform BrowserHawk extended detection on the initial page requested in a user's session (as is typical), you will see the HitType of Tested reported for their first page instead of Entry. Other pages in the site which perform extended property tests will return the HitType of Tested as well.



"Click" is the most common HitType. PLT data collected with a HitType of Click indicates that the user navigated from one web page within the PLT Family to another. Latency measurements are provided that indicate how long it took from the time the user initiated the new page request, until the requested page began loading. Likewise Intra-page load times are provided to indicate how long the page took to load once the load started. Latency plus Intra-page load time yields the total amount of time it took to process the user's request.



BrowserHawk uses a client-side cookie to track important PLT information. If a visitor has cookies disabled, BrowserHawk will not report any Latency measurements for user because no start time for the request will be available. In this scenario, Intra-page load time are still reported along with the HitType of "Cookieless".



A HitType of "Cached" indicates that the PLT data is from a page that was viewed from cache. For instance, often pages are displayed from cache as a user moves backwards through a site by hitting their browser's Back button.


In these cases an Intra-page load time is reported that reflects how long the page took to load from the user's cache. No Latency measurement is reported for Cached pages because there is no latency component involved in the page request (since the request is processed locally from the cache).



A HitType of "ComeBack" indicates that the visitor left the PLT Family during the session, but has now returned to a PLT Family page for which the reported data is for. In this scenario an Intra-page load time is reported, but no Latency measurement is available. Subsequent hits to pages within the PLT Family will then be returned with Latency data.


For example, assume a visitor leaves your site for a page on another web site. Then later the same visitor clicks on a link on that web site back to your web site. Or, the visitor comes back by way of using a bookmark to your site or entering your site in the browser. In these cases a HitType of ComeBack is recorded. Note that in other cases where a user leaves your site and then returns using the browser's Back button, this will be logged as Cached rather than Comeback, assuming the page is indeed served from the cache.



A HitType of "IntraOnly" indicates that no Latency measurement is available because a valid start time for leaving the previous request was not available, or the start time determined to be unreliable. One scenario in particular that returns IntraOnly is when a user opens a new browser tab or window and accesses your site after that user has already accessed your site in another tab or window. In the case of IntraOnly, an accurate Intra-page load time is reported and subsequent hits in the session will return to providing Latency measurements.



A HitType of "ClockSkew" indicates that no PLT measurements are available for that particular request because of an unexpected adjustment to a visitor's system clock occurred. For example, if a background process on the visitor's computer happens to update their system clock while in the middle of downloading a page, ClockSkew is returned indicating no reliable timings are available. Subsequent hits from the user will resume with normal measurements as expected.


See Also:

About Page Load Time Monitoring