What is a Bounce Rate?
Before a website’s bounce rate can be fixed, first the small business owner must know what a bounce rate is. A bounce rate is the percentage of people who leave (“bounce”) after visiting just one page on a website. This percentage can be found on Google Analytics. For example, a small business owner finds that he has a bounce rate of 70%. This means 70% of people who visited his website left after only viewing the page they entered on.
This metric boils down to the fact that visitors aren’t being retained by the website. Either, people are visiting the site and not finding what they need. Or they did find what they needed but your website didn’t give them anything else. The key is to be certain that once people land on a page, they’re attracted to viewing more pages. Be sure you understand your bounce rate before you move forward with fixing it.
Is Bounce Rate Really a Bad Thing?
The answer depends on the objectives of your website. Take a minute and think about the objectives for your website. There are some websites where the single objective is to have a reaction to a CTA. So that means visitors will more than likely just go to one page and there will be a higher “bounce rate”. Whereas there are websites whose objective is to have visitors browse through a maze of content and complete numerous other objectives. And other CTAs could lead a visitor off a website and that will, too, result in a higher bounce rate. Calls to action that could lead a visitor off your website include:
- Calling your number to inquire about products or services.
- Clicking on ad banners that pay per click or lead to affiliate product marketing sites.
- Promoting products/services found on another domain.
- Filling out a lead form (with no confirmation page.)
Basically, if your only objective to require people to visit one page on your website, then you may not have to worry about your bounce rate.
What is Considered a Good Bounce Rate?
To answer this question, the general rule of thumb is:
80% or above – very bad or there may be a tracking error
70% to 80% – poor
50% to 70% – average
30% to 50% – excellent
20% or below – there may be a tracking error
While the above metrics are a good to start, bounce rate varies across industries, goals, and the type of content you have.
Using Google Analytics
Your first step to figuring out how to improve your bounce rate is going to Google Analytics. You’re greeted with an average bounce rate when you sign into your Google Analytics profile for your site. It is while you would like this to return. Here are a few things you can learn throughout Analytics from your bounce rate.
First, you’ll want to go to the “Behavior” reports section then click “Site Content” > “All Pages”.
Here you’ll see the webpages on your site that have obtained the most page views over the thirty days. Click the “Bounce Rate” column. By clicking on that column, you can sort by bounce rate.
This information can help you decide:
- Which content leads individuals to more pages on your site
- Which content doesn’t keep individuals on your website.
- Which pages on your site need improvement.
- Which pages you can use as models for your weaker pages.
Best Traffic Sources
Next, you’ll want to visit “All Traffic” > “Source/Medium” found in the “Acquisition” reports section. Here, you will see where your traffic comes from, like Facebook, direct, etc. This report can tell you:
- Which traffic sources will bring visitors that will stay longer.
- Whether you are satisfying a particular visitor over another.
- Which traffic sources to focus on and not to focus on.
More Data in Connection with Bounce Rate
Throughout Google Analytics every metric is connected to your bounce rate. Continue exploring Google Analytics to find the bounce rate of your website in relations to demographics, browser types, related to by demographics like location, browser types, and participation.
How to Improve Your Bounce Rate
So now that you have learned more about your content and traffic resources and how it relates to your bounce rate, your next question is probably how to increase bounce rate.
Here are some tips that can benefit you:
- Add links to other pages in website while writing your content. Consider other pages that people have shown interest in and connect to them throughout your articles. For example, (If you love this, you’ll definitely love this: *insert link here*)
- Go beyond just product pages. They might want to find out more. Instead of just having the sales copy, include some links guides on how best to use the product to achieve a result, like a product guide, what clients have said about the item, or ideas. It will keep the visitor on the site.
- Add hyperlinks to top articles on your sidebar. This may be top articles, most popular products, etc., all of which would attract visitors deeper into your site.
- Improve your articles. If you find that not only do some pages have a high bounce rate but also a low average time on the page, then it may be a problem with your content not supplying something valuable. Look for ways that could provide more valuable information to keep traffic on that page (such as video.)
Last, but not least, even if a user leaves your website, do what you can to make sure users will remember and return later on. You can do this by providing them links to your social media profiles or having a newsletter sign-up. If they leave your site, but eventually become a fan of your Facebook page or follow your blog, you will still have an opportunity of bringing them back. It is definitely something to keep into consideration.