Everything You Need to Know About Bounce Rate
A bounce is what happens when a user leaves your website after visiting only one page. Bounce rate is the percentage of sessions that result in a bounce.
Generally, you want to aim for a low bounce rate because it means people are landing on your website and exploring a significant amount of content. The more they see, the more likely they are to become a customer.
What Is a Good Bounce Rate for a Website?
For a website overall, 58% or lower is considered a “good” bounce rate. Anything less than 40% would be considered excellent, and higher than 70% may be cause for making changes. But it’s complicated.
It’s normal for bounce rate to vary drastically, depending on the purpose of a webpage or segment (e.g., blogs vs. service pages). Industry and business structure is a factor too: A B2B website generally has a slightly higher bounce rate than a B2C website.
Because of all the factors involved, looking at the bounce rate for your whole website doesn’t tell you much about audience engagement. Before you start brainstorming how to reduce bounce rate, think about where you really need to focus first.
The Best Ways to Analyze Bounce Rate
Before you do anything else, consider whether a low bounce rate is part of your primary goals. If business is booming but bounce rate is high in some areas of your website, are you still going to focus on how to reduce bounce rate? Maybe not. Whether a good bounce rate is more of a primary, secondary, or tertiary goal for your business, here’s how we recommend analyzing it to get insights you can act on.
- Bounce rate by channel. Look at the channel breakdown in Google Analytics. Observe whether organic search, paid media, social, email, or another channel has the best (i.e., lowest) or worst bounce rate. Then delve into each channel to learn more.
- Bounce rate by landing page. Within each channel, look at the top landing pages by number of sessions. Are some of your top landing pages responsible for the high channel-wide bounce rate, or is the rate somewhat even across pages? How can you reduce bounce rate page-by-page by updating content or design? (Hint: Explore our tips later in this post)
- Bounce rate by segment. Look at your pages in segments too: all service pages, all product pages, all company pages, all blogs and resources, etc. Getting a low bounce rate is typically more important within segments that are dedicated solely to guiding people down the sales funnel. Try reducing bounce rate within the segments where it matters most to your business.
- Extra tip: You’ll probably notice that bounce rate is higher on your blogs or resource pages, which are multi-purpose – meant to build brand awareness, thought leadership, domain authority, and hopefully some sales too. Higher bounce rate here is likely okay, as users may be getting an answer to their question (and a brand impression) before leaving. That said, be sure these pages end with a CTA so you’re not losing customers who want to learn more about your products or services.
- Unusual changes in bounce rate. Because bounce rate is not a perfect metric, many businesses or marketers choose to simply monitor it for unusual activity. If there’s a major spike in bounce rate across all your service pages, it’s possible that something broke – or that flashy pop-up you added isn’t working.
- Other engagement metrics. Time on page, session duration, page depth, scroll depth, downloads, and other engagement metrics will add more color to your investigation of overall engagement.
How to Reduce Bounce Rate
Once you’ve identified where in your website you want to focus, it’s time to approach how to reduce bounce rate. Here are 12 great strategies for improving bounce rate on any page:
- Improve pagespeed. A slow-loading page leads to higher bounce rates. We recommend Google’s Lighthouse or a similar testing tool to find your pagespeed weak points.
- Ensure mobile friendliness. Make sure your site is mobile-responsive, has great UX for any screen size, and is fast enough for on-the-go people.
- Audit UX and accessibility. We have your back with these 10 UX tips and web accessibility services.
- Improve information hierarchy. Nobody likes a wall of text, a confusing mix of fonts, or a buried form. In addition to writing organized and skimmable content, make sure the hierarchy is clear through the heading styles too.
- Focus on relevancy. If you’re answering the query “how to peel an artichoke,” avoid spending half the post explaining what an artichoke is. Think of a user’s level of knowledge, and their desires, as they type in search terms.
- Spread information across pages. A single page should answer a handful of questions and link to other pages with parallel topics. If you try to do too much in one place, you’re likely to lose your audience.
- Make CTAs simple but strong. If it’s not clear what a user should do next, they may not do anything at all.
- Include internal links. Internal links entice a reader to stay on your site longer, giving them a longer impression of your brand and signaling to search engines that your content rocks.
- Make external links open in a new window. If your external links don’t open in a new window, clicks will count as a bounce – even if a user didn’t expect to leave the site.
- Use multimedia. Using diverse media like photography, video, infographics, checklists, and short animations is often more helpful and engaging than straightforward words. It’s great for social posts, great for user engagement, and great for backlink potential!
- Write a great title and meta description. The SERP is where you set up a user’s expectation of your content. If your title tag and meta description don’t make sense, a user may click and see content they don’t expect – which is pretty much a guaranteed bounce.
- Test different solutions. While there are best practices, your audience is unique. You never know the best solutions until you’ve tested several, using A/B tests, multi-variant tests, surveys, and so on.
Elevate Your Strategy More
Want more support in improving engagement and targeting the right audience with your marketing efforts? The Oneupweb blog is a good place for that. We provide an extensive range of marketing services too.