Why A high Bounce Rate is not always a bad thing

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Does your bounce rate seem high? If it does, there’s no need to worry yet!

It is common for digital marketers to face this problem, which is usually caused by their website not performing as it should.

You can tell when your site has a high bounce rate that people aren’t finding what they’re looking for. Take this as an opportunity to do better.

The following tips and steps will help you get your bounce rates back to manageable levels if your bounce rates are higher than you’d like.

What is a High Bounce Rate

Visitors who bounce off a webpage without taking any action, like clicking a link or filling out a form, or making a purchase are called bouncers.

There are three main reasons to consider bounce rate:

  1. It is obvious that someone who bounces off of your site didn’t convert. You can also increase your conversion rate when you stop visitors from bouncing.
  2. Google may consider bounce rate when ranking websites. Bounce Rate is closely related to rankings on the first page of Google, according to one industry study.
  3. If your site has a high bounce rate, you may be experiencing content, user experience, page layout, or issues with content.

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High Vs Low Bounce Rate

It is critical to understand the distinction between a high bounce rate and a low bounce rate before you can determine what a good bounce rate for your site is.

Bounce rates indicate visitors are exiting your site quickly, after viewing a single page on your site. The number of visitors who bounce off a page is low if they spend time on it and click on available links. 

High bounce rates are not always a bad thing as far as good versus bad goes. Depending on the criterion used, the definition of a good bounce rate or a bad bounce rate can vary. For example, according to Google:

“If the success of your site depends on users viewing more than one page, then, yes, a high bounce rate is bad. On the other hand, if you have a single-page site like a blog, or offer other types of content for which single-page sessions are expected, then a high bounce rate is perfectly normal.”

You can also look at this from the perspective of a website’s structure. Let’s take an e-commerce site as an example. If you want your visitors to stay on your landing pages, such as product pages, the homepage is likely to have the highest bounce rate. 

How do you determine a good bounce rate? It is considered a high bounce rate if a site has a bounce rate of 56% to 70%, but there are a few reasons why this might be the case, and a bounce rate of 41% to 55% would be considered average. Ideal bounce rates would be between 26% and 40%.

Semrush’s Traffic Analytics Tool readily reveals a page’s bounce rate as well as its average page visit duration, the total number of unique visitors, and the average page visit duration. 

Bounce rate vs exit rate

It’s important to understand that bounce rate and exit rate are not the same things, but they both measure engagement on a website. In website bounce rates, users enter a website and leave after viewing no other pages. An exit rate measures how many users exit from a particular page of a website.

Basically, the exit rate tells you how many people left your website after only visiting one page, but it does not tell you whether or not the person visited the entire website. The result is that all bounces (and one-page visits) are exits, but not all exits are bounces.

The bounce rate of a homepage is 50% if, for example, 100 people access it and 50 leave without visiting any other pages. However, only 100 of those 400 pageviews leave the site from the homepage over that same time period. That would mean a 25% exit rate.

Bounce Rate & Google Analytics

Why is it Important to Track Bounce Rate on Google Analytics?

In order to make marketing and optimization decisions based on whether or not visitors interact with the page, tracking bounces helps you learn how visitors use your site by tracking their behavior.

Landing pages, for instance, can benefit greatly from tracking bounces. If your landing page drives people away without having them interact with your site or move to the rest of it, consider:

  • Your landing page should be optimized so your visitors know exactly what they should do next
  • Diversifying your efforts by investing in a different (or new) campaign

What Is A Healthy Bounce Rate?

An appropriate term would be the bounce rate for each website based on its specific objectives, rather than the number of bounces. A 20% to 50% goal is not without merit, but it may be an oversimplified interpretation of behavior. 

For information-specific sites, such as online dictionaries, a high bounce rate is indicative that the visitor was satisfied and is likely to return, whereas a high bounce rate is some indication of the visitor’s intent to stay and browse.

There are some websites, as a matter of fact, that has a one-page design. In such cases, a bad bounce rate cannot be assessed since the design itself ensures it remains at 100%. The time spent on a page provides a more pertinent insight in these situations, as well as on landing pages with lots of information. 

If a visitor leaves the site within only a few seconds, then this is a bad sign, but if they spend multiple minutes on the page, then the bounce rate might not be the best measure of the site’s performance.

An effective website should define at the outset what is considered a high bounce rate, based on the site’s purpose and sector averages, among other factors. This allows for the appropriate insight to be gained from the data.

How is Bounce Rate Calculated?

How To Check The Bounce Rate Of Your Website

The next step is to identify where you can find information about the bounce rate of your website once you have defined what your desired rate is. Google Analytics is a great tool for finding and understanding data that helps businesses better understand how well their websites are performing. 

If you have a grasp of the terms and purpose of the data, using Google Analytics should not be too difficult for anyone who is not very familiar with it.

Open Google Analytics for your website. Afterward, you’ll find a variety of other metrics of interest under the “Audience Overview” tab. Choosing which bounce rate to read depends entirely on whether you wish to see the bounce rate for the entire website or for each individual page, which is also displayed. 

To view a graph of the bounce rate for the defined time period, simply click on the bounce rate metric for the entire website. In the top right corner of the screen, a calendar with customizable options lets users set the time period.

You can then select “All Pages” to see a list of your website’s pages and how many visitors bounced from them. This holds true for individual pages as well as the unique context of the website’s bounce rate.

What bounce Rate is Considered as a Good Bounce Rate for a New Website?

According to convention, a bounce rate of 26 to 40 percent is excellent. Between 41 and 55 percent is a reasonable bounce rate. Despite being higher than average, 56 to 70 percent is not necessarily alarming, depending on the website. In general, anything over 70 percent is disappointing outside of blogs, news, and events.

Do Mobile Websites Usually have a Higher Bounce Rate?

What are some ways to improve mobile bounce rates?

Optimized means you provide a responsive template. That is what companies need to do more of. Your mobile loading speed and how user-friendly your mobile version really is should be the first things you look at when reducing mobile bounce rates. 

Make sure that you make it easy for visitors to get to popular information by looking at user journeys and popular entry pages on mobile. 

Your desktop and mobile versions of your site should not have totally different menus. People buying online sometimes have a difficult time navigating your site, so it may be worthwhile building an app to better serve their needs.

Summing it up

The average bounce rate on your site is likely already known to you. Are you concerned? Is that still the case when all other metrics are taken into account?

You now have a playbook to follow if, after assessing your side, your bounce rate remains high. In order to ensure that your online marketing campaigns are successful, you should assess the content of your website, perform technical checks, and use technologies like inbound marketing, heatmaps, and A/B testing from platforms like Crazy Egg.

In the end, it is all about providing the best possible experience for the user. Providing what your audience wants will make them more likely to visit, browse, and convert.

About the Author

My name’s Semil Shah, and I pride myself on being the last digital marketer that you’ll ever need. Having worked internationally across agile and disruptive teams from San Fransico to London, I can help you take what you are doing in digital to a whole next level.

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