The most important thing to understand the profitability of each resource is analytic. No matter what kind of website it is: an e-commerce platform, a website with some services, or a blog, you won’t be able to start improving it until you have the data you can analyze. Nowadays the analytics services can help to track the wide pool of metrics, from the number of visitors per period to specific events. One of the most popular services worldwide is Google Analytics (GA), which has been used by millions of webmasters.
Today we will talk about one of the important metrics you should take into account – the bounce rate. At Google Analytics you may find the bounce rate in different reports – “channels”, “source/medium”, “site content” and so on.
So what is the bounce rate? Bounce rate is a term in web analytics that refers to the percentage of visitors who left the site directly from the landing page or viewed no more than one page or did not do any target actions. Therefore the higher bounce rate you have the worse is the interaction users have with your website.
Okay, you might ask – what is a high bounce rate? Is it 30 or 50 or 70 percent? On average the bounce rate in the range of 26 to 40 percent is excellent. Between 41 and 55 percent is still good – this is average figures for the biggest part of good websites. To 70 percent – still normal especially for some types of industries and websites. But if the figures are higher than 70 percent – you have to take action.
So, if you see that there are some troubles at your resource, or you wanna improve your BR to excellent numbers, we have prepared a list of useful tricks that can help you.
Trick 1. Make sure that your Google Analytics tracking is correct.
The fact is that GA has some standards for counting bounce rates. If your visitor does not fire any target events or does not go to the next page – GA counts this session with a 100% bounce rate.
So, let’s imagine that you have a blog with long reads. The average user reads information for some time period and possibly leaves. This user can spend one or ten minutes at your website but for GA it doesn’t matter. This session will be counted as a bounce.
For this situation, we have an elegant and very simple option. First, of all, you should understand which time on the page works for you. How much time a user spent on the page = interest in your content. Next step – you should create an event that will fire after some time spent on page – 30 sec – 60 sec – 120 sec of your choice. How can you do this? The simplest way is Google Tag Manager.
All you need is to create a built-in trigger – “timer” and specify the time period.
After you have done this the GA will take into consideration the events “timer”, and will not count such sessions as a bounce.
Such a solution is so good for one-page websites but not for AJAX-based. For the second type of website, it will be better to create events for different event actions.
Trick 2. Analyze the sources of traffic with a high bounce rate
If in Google Analytics you will go to the Acquisition -> All traffic -> Source Medium, you can find all traffic sources and filter them by Bounce Rate from higher to lower. Pay attention to the rows with big BR and analyze them. How many users are coming from such resources? Are these types of users paid or referral or organic? How long has the bounce rate been so high?
Let’s describe a couple of approximate scenarios. The first – you get a lot of such traffic from the referral sources. Maybe someone left a link to your website, or it was the link-building actions, or that was just bot-type traffic. If these links are not made by you, just filter them at the Administrator panel and do not count at all. The better option will be to create a new view at Google Analytics without “trash”-traffic.
We propose to create a new view instead of working at the main site because it will be useful for the future to collect all traffic.
The next scenario – we have run an ads campaign and we have a high bounce rate. First, you should know about your campaign – its ROI. is this campaign profitable at all with all these bounces, maybe you should stop it at all?
If the ROI is convenient for you, take into account the next things – keywords (we will talk about them below) and the type of your ads. What does it mean? If you use the banner ads and place them on different sources there is some percent of users that just misclick on it. Double-check the publisher you are collaborating with.
Trick 3. Make your landing pages relevant to keywords
Now let’s go back to the keywords. One of the things that have an impact on bounce rate is mismatching between keywords and landing pages. To create the correct list of keywords you should understand your customer or user portrait. How this person will find you, which keywords he or she will use to describe the needs.
If an advertiser does not understand the client portrait, we get the situation where there is a lot of irrelevant traffic and accordingly high bounce level.
A simple example – you are trying to sell some service solution for chatbot creation. You start your ads campaign with different keywords like “chatbots”, “free chatbots” and so on. Of course, there will be a high percentage of users that will leave your page as soon as they find the word “price”.
Trick 4. Page speed optimization
There is a direct correlation between page speed and bounce rate. On average the user can wait between 1 to 3 seconds for the full page loading. Each extra second in site load time reduces conversion rates by 7% – source. So check your resources and fix the main troubles with your pages.
The most common troubles with page speed are based on high image size, different JS codes at the page heads, videos, and so on. Also, take a look at the mobile traffic. In 2020 in the USA the part of traffic from mobile devices was 61%. The easiest way will be to use the PageSpeed SEO tool and find SEO specialists to prepare tech recommendations for your full-stack developers.
Trick 5. Clear website navigation
Navigation is a system by which a visitor navigates through your site, goes to pages of the second nesting level, and searches for the necessary information.
It is important that the navigation on the site is convenient, otherwise, you risk losing your visitor. Without proper navigation, the user simply will not be able to find what he was looking for.
The quality navigation should be simple – all elements of the menu or user interface should be clearly visible and intuitive for any user. Ideally, a user should need no more than 3 clicks to navigate to any page or section of the site
Also, the important part of website navigation is breadcrumbs. They help users navigate how he moves: from the menu to internal pages, from section to subsection, etc.
The breadcrumbs are an indispensable element of a logical and understandable site structure. Also, it is a significant factor for usability. Your resource will be more convenient to use.
Bounce advise. Use behavior analytics tools
There are a number of different tools that can help you to track user experience. One of the most popular is Hotjar. It has a free version just to try how it works.
So, why do we need such services? They can show you how the users interact with the website via different instruments like scrolling maps, heatmaps, and direct page recording. The service complements the traditional web analytics tools.
By tracking and recording user behavior with Hotjar, you can draw conclusions about what they like and dislike.
Bounce rate is a composite metric. It can be impacted by different reasons from wrong keywords to inconvenient UX or UI design at your website. The bounce rate allows you to quickly get information about the problem of your site, also you can learn more about the behavior of your audience.