“What is your site’s Bounce Rate?” is probably a question that many webmasters have been asked. Simply defined, it’s the percentage of visitors who land on your site and then leave without visiting any other page. It is one of the most important site metrics, and webmasters and digital marketers try to keep that number as low as possible.
Bounce rates are significant because they tell search engines that visitors are not finding what they were looking for on your site, or did not find the content compelling enough to check out any other pages. A high rate makes search engines more likely to conclude that your website doesn’t have content for specific topics or keywords, which then results in falling search rankings for your site.
A website’s overall bounce rate is the average of bounce rates for all its pages. Free tools such as Google Analytics, Pingdom, as well as paid tools like Clicky can analyze and compute your website’s bounce rate. Once you have figured out your site’s bounce rate, it can be used as a benchmark to gauge improvements over time.
A bounce rate over 50% is considered to be excessive, while 40–50% is considered average, and a rate under 40% means that your site is doing well.
Tips to improve your website’s bounce rate
- Use a tag line for your business, which helps visitors get an idea about its products and/ or services, and sets expectations. Ideally, your tag line should be below your logo.
- The Title and Description of the page should clearly define the content on it. This makes more users click on your link in search results.
- Provide links from the home page to other sections of the site, e.g., products, services, blog, resources, and so on, and use page descriptions of two to three lines for each of them.
- Don’t clutter the page with too much information or very long paragraphs. It is also a good practice to use images that are descriptive and can help summarize content.
- It is highly advisable not to use auto-play for audio and video content on your site, which may force some visitors to leave the page immediately.
- Don’t make it mandatory for visitors to provide an email ID, phone number, or other information to enter your site. Most people are not comfortable with sharing contact information and will often exit sites that ask for it.
- Optimize the page load time. Ideally, it should take under 2 seconds to load a page. Surveys show that pages with high load times have high bounce rates.
- It is recommended not to display pop up ads, which are annoying to visitors.
- External or third-party links should open in new browser tabs. This helps keep visitors on your site for further engagement.
- Provide simple and easy site navigation. Complicated navigation schemes may force users to abandon the site.
- Your website must be mobile friendly. According to Google, the bulk of searches today take place through smartphones. This will help reduce the bounce rate for users on mobile devices.
- The search option within your site should be easy to find and use.
- Having unique and engaging content will greatly enhance time spent by visitors on your site, encouraging visitors to explore other sections and perhaps share your content with their friends on social media.
These recommendations will not only improve a site’s bounce rate and user engagement, but also help improve its keyword rankings. Try these and improve your website bounce rate!