It means your website isn’t winning people over. We tell you what a website bounce rate is, why it matters and how to improve yours.
“Bounce” is a great way to remember it – it’s people landing then bouncing off your website.
The bounce rate is typically a good indicator of how much (or how little) interest is being shown in your website. It shows the percentage of visitors who have left your website after first landing there, without exploring any additional pages of your site.
A high bounce rate means a lot of people are leaving your website at first sight. By contrast, a low bounce rate indicates a high number of people have explored your site (by visiting a minimum of one additional page of your website since their arrival).
The bounce rate is displayed as a number out of 100%. A high bounce rate would be considered anything over 80%. A bounce rate of 40-50% is considered very good. The rule of thumb is the lower your bounce rate, the better.
Google is always reading and interpreting user behaviour and uses this information (amongst other data) to rate websites by level of importance and relevance. This informs the results of search queries and which sites are listed first.
If human visitors are simply pinging off elsewhere, as far as Google is concerned, the website is therefore not that relevant or interesting and rates the website accordingly.
Let’s not overlook the human element here too. If your human visitors aren’t exploring your site, you’re not winning them over or converting them to customers either, which is bad for business.
Google Analytics tracks all kinds of data on your website, including your bounce rate. If you’re not familiar with Google Analytics, don’t know how to set it up or look into it yourself, ask the company that built your website if they can do all this for you and print a report which includes the bounce rate information.
Just for a moment don’t think about your website. Instead, ask yourself this question: When you go to a website, what keeps you there and keeps you exploring the site, versus what puts you off and makes you leave?
You’ve probably already got a good idea or few.
Here are our top four tips for a great landing page (this could be your home page, or any page you’re actively directing visitors to):
1. If your page is long, have a sticky header
The navigation bar displaying the website pages (e.g. home, services, about, contact) should be “sticky”, so no matter how far the visitor travels down the page, they can easily continue to explore your site by easily clicking on the navigation bar to go to another page.
2. Encourage further “click-throughs”
Links help people find their way around a website. These could be text hyperlinks or graphics that your visitor clicks to learn more about what they’re reading about, or go deeper into your site to related pages. You can also enhance the user experience by having “back to” buttons or hyperlinked text, for them to click backwards as well as forwards.
3. Make your pages informative and interesting
Create engaging pages that people enjoy visiting. Have good quality, informative content that’s a pleasure to read, and graphics that are engaging. Lay the content out nicely so people can glance over it and quickly zero in on what they want to learn more about.
4. Create trust
Why should a stranger engage with your company? You need to create trust. Having contact details on clear display and ideally, a physical location, holds you accountable. A professional looking, well designed website will also engender more trust than a spammy looking one. Testimonials or case studies also help. Survey statistics are always reporting businesses who have good reviews do better.
To see all the above in action, take a look at Cloud Edge.
If you need help with any of this, just get in touch with us. We’ve been in business since 2004 and building websites is what we specialise in.