Bounce Rate: What You Need to Know

There are two absolute truth’s about website visitors, they will enter, and they will exit. What happens on their journey between those inevitable events is entirely up to you (and maybe us).

 

Isabel Hosley

Posted by
Isabel Hosley on

Jul 21, 2021


There are two absolute truth’s about all website visitors; they will enter, and they will exit. It seems simple, but if you’ve ever been responsible for building a website you know how much you’ve stressed out over every word, image, and plugin. You want to understand what happens on their journey between those inevitable events; a process entirely up to you (and maybe us).

Have you heard of the 15 second rule?

The average website visitor spends about 15 seconds on a website. That is the amount of time you have to grab their attention and entice them into wanting more. Whether you like it or not, if you don’t grab their attention within the first 15 seconds, it’s likely you’ll lose them forever. So now we ask ourselves, how do we generate interest for our consumer? Let’s explore some options.

It all comes down to bounce rate.

What’s bounce rate? Well, your bounce rate is the rate in which consumers leave your website. If you have a high bounce rate, it is likely that your website is constructed poorly. To find your bounce rate, simply log into your google analytics account and navigate to “Audience overview”. Your screen should look something like this.

And yes, these charts and graphs are great, but looking at a site wide bounce rate is sometimes not helpful. In this case, it is much more beneficial to view bounce rate by site page. This way, you can see which pages are more attractive to visitors, and which ones need some work. To do so, go to the behaviors section of your google analytics and hit the site content drop down. From here, you can click all pages to see a similar image to the one shown below.

Here, you can clearly see which pages are outperforming others, and where you need to make improvements. When you see all these percentages, it’s important to place meaning with them. According to Yoast, there are different ways in which you can interpret bounce rate.

  1. How does Google Analytics calculate bounce rate?

Google Analytics collects the sessions where a website visitor only visited one site page and then divides it by the total sessions. A webpage with a high bounce rate can mean a few different things. First, and best result, the visitors have found the information they are looking for quickly and efficiently. Secondly, the high bounce rate may mean the quality of the page is low and uninviting. Lastly, it may mean your audience doesn’t match the purpose of the page, therefore, they won’t engage.

2. Bounce Rate and SEO

For any business, you need to make sure that when people come to your website, they stay and purchase your product or service. In terms of SEO ranking, bounce rate does not influence rank on google, so fussing with it a ton won’t change your ranking. However, holistically, you should be optimizing every aspect of your website, so bounce rate in that sense is very important.

3. How to interpret bounce rates

The height of your bounce rate depends on the purpose of the page on your site. Specifically, if you’re looking for visitors to simply be informed quickly, a high bounce rate might not be bad. However, if you want the visitors to read articles, subscribe to newsletters, or buy a product, a lower bounce rate is optimal.

So, if my goals include conversion, why is my bounce rate so high?

There are a number of reasons your bounce rate may be high. These reasons are typically easy fixes, so getting a handle on your bounce rate can be more simple than you may think – and the added benefit? It will increase SEO and conversions. Here are a handful of reasons your bounce rate may be high.

  1. Slow loading and processing
  2. Low quality content
  3. Page error
  4. Not-so mobile friendly
  5. Misleading descriptions
  6. Confusing page
  7. A call-to-action
  8. Bad link from another site
  9. Page is not aesthetically pleasing
  10. Page is not user-friendly

Have you ever walked into a restaurant or café and immediately know you don’t want to order anything? Same goes for visitors on a website. In order to keep visitors on your website (for more than 15 seconds) you need to optimize your website. Need some help? Let us show you how by scheduling a 5 minute brain storm with our marketing team!