What is Bounce Rate?

Bounce rate is the percentage of people who arrive on your site and leave without visiting a second page. Bounce rate is an analytical tracking metric that was designed to help tell you if you have the right audience coming to your pages and if you are giving them what they need and desire.

When you design your site, you want to think of the desired path you want your users to take. Once you set this up, you can track their actual path in addition to the overall bounce rate.

Bounce Rate vs. Exit Rate

Bounce rate refers to the page they first land on, also called the entry page. The exit rate refers the page your audience leaves on or exits. It is just as important to know the exit rate in addition to the bounce rate.

As I mentioned above, when you design a website, you have a desired path (steps) you want your user to take. If you start to notice your users leaving on step 3 of 5, then you know where you need to make changes.

If your exit rate is higher on step 5, that’s normal – they have reached the end of your desired path for them.

Average Bounce Rates

The average website bounce rate is 40% (source: Google). However, with that said bounce rate really does depend on the type of site and what it is used for. Google came up with averages based on the different types of sites.

Certain pages will naturally have a higher bounce rate and that is acceptable in most cases. Pages such as: Contact Us, Checkout, Support Pages, Blog Articles and Landing Pages typically have a higher bounce rate due to their nature and purpose.

Bounce Rates By Site Type

  • Content Websites: 40-60%
  • lead generation: 30-50%
  • Blogs: 70-98%
  • Retail: 20-40%
  • Service: 10-30%
  • Landing Pages: 70-90%

Bounce Rate Tips

Tip #1: Make Your Goal Obvious

Your page content should be designed in a way that your overall page goal is obvious. For example, is your page supposed to inform people? Is it supposed to encourage them to buy something? Is it there to entertain and engage them into taking an action?

There are a lot of options – you need to decide what your overall goal or objectives are and then make it obvious to your users. You ultimately want them to take your desired path. The more obvious your goal to your user, the easier it will be for them to make a decision and have a happier user experience.

Tip #2: Internal Linking is Key

Placing links within your content to other relevant pages on your site is just plain good SEO practice. It also encourages human visitors to explore more of your site. Again, you want them to take certain paths on your site; this is a way to help promote that.Even though this step is so simple, a lot of times it isn’t being done. Look at your site and think about where adding internal links may make sense and then add them.

The Wikipedia Effect

Say you go to Wikipedia for some info. Did you manage to only look at one page? Or did the links to related topics draw you into exploring? Exactly. Good internal linking keeps your users exploring your site and looking at related information far longer than they might have planned, which can be great for your business.

Tip #3: Just Say No to Pop-Ups

This section seems quite obvious to me, however with all the sites I have seen with lots of pop-ups, it is not to others. Pop-up advertising is dead. Visitors do not want to be bombarded with spam-like information when they enter a site.
There are other ways to get visitors to view your information without using pop-ups. Let your design and content earn their attention. There is no need for pop-ups!

Tip #4: Write Interesting Content

I have discussed this topic over and over again, but it does relate to so much of online marketing that I feel I need to talk about it again. Content is King! In order to keep the attention of your visitors, you do need to write compelling content that engages your readers. Your content must be current, relevant, interesting and informative.
The longer you can get your visitors to stay on one page or even get them to go to the next, the better chance you have for them to convert to a customer. Grab their attention with your content and keep them interested with your layout, offerings and design.

Tip #5: Layout & Design Does Matter

The overall goal of your page or website should be to make your visitors feel comfortable with you. Design elements can do that. Make sure your background is clean, allowing for enough white space.Also pay attention to the colors and themes you use and that they work with the goals of your site and the overall user experience you want your visitors to have.
A safe way to go is a simple and clean layout, but safe is not always good either if the audience you are targeting is not in-fact “safe” in nature. Too radical or too simple of a design can scare your visitors away and drastically effect your bounce rate as well as your conversion rates.

Final Thoughts

Before totally changing your website, think about everything I have talked about here. As I mentioned above, some pages do have a higher bounce rate and that is OK.

Look at the pages that shouldn’t and analyze the data on those pages instead. Then if you find changes should be made, make the necessary ones at that time.

Just remember…when users CAN’T easily find what they are looking for, or don’t like what they see, they will bounce quickly – and Google will notice.