Top tips to improve your bounce rate

07 July 2014

bounce rate imagwSo you have your new shiny website, it is ready to go, actually it’s gone live.  Once you have overcome your happiness and start getting use to the increased demand, you may start asking yourself – are all my website users happy, does the website meet their needs?  One set of statistic which can help you answer that question is bounce rate and exit rate.

These two statistics can give you a wealth of information on how your website is being used and more importantly which percentages of your users are leaving the website without visiting another other page (not good).  Here is a simple definition of bounce rate and exit rate:


Bounce Rate

Your bounce rate is the percentage of visitors who leave your website after visiting a single page.  Every webpage on your site will have a bounce rate, but some pages are more important than others.  The top three pages to concern yourself with are:

-          Landing pages – these are pages which your users are directed to via advertising (twitter, facebook, online campaigns etc),

-          High traffic pages – these tend to be the most visited paged i.e. homepage, about page etc.

-          Pages where you are attempting to make a sale/conversation.


Exit Rate

An Exit rate is specific to each web page and identifies the percentage of people who leave after visit the page.  A high percentage here will naturally increase your bounce rate, and you should aim to resolve this ASAP.

Any one of these will constitute a bounce or exit:

-          User hits the back/forward button.

-          User enters a new Url in the address bar.

-          The user closes the window or tab.

-          User clicks a link which redirects a user to an external webpage.

-          The user’s session times out.

Now we know what bounce rate is, lets look at some of the common reasons and how we can prevent it.


Website is difficult to use

Usability is a very personal matter and can be very difficult to see it from someone else view.  One thing to guarantee user will leave your website  and never come back is hard to use website.  Does your website take you to unexpected webpages, can’t find a find or some information, then maybe your website is not ideally designed.  To help you identify these black spots check out Google Analytics report – Behaviour flow (https://support.google.com/analytics/answer/2785577?hl=en-GB).  The report can help identify pages which users find difficult and ultimately leave (bounce).  One handy way to help identify and resolve usability issues is to ask a “non IT” to review your site and ask them to find specific pages, Twitter and facebook can be a vital way to find people.


How is user UI?

A hard truth about websites is, websites which are ugly do not succeed.  The website content could be the best in the world, but the user will not stay around if they do not like it.  Make sure your website is visually appealing.


Why are your website using your site?

Ensure the users who are directed to your website are there for the right reasons.  Ensure their expectation are set, users who do not find what they expect, do not stay ad will not return to your site.   This s vitally important when offering online campaigns, ensure your social media outlets are directed at the correct audience.


One link or two…

Can your user navigate to the require article with only 1 or 2 clicks?  If your answer is no, then think longer and hard if you making the user experience difficult.  Your user is unlikely to work to get any information you have on offer.  Also worth noting, if the user clicks on the back button, then that is a bounce.  Should the user ever have to use your back button?

 SEO