How To Reduce Bounce Rate
Your website traffic is only valuable if it furthers your business objectives. Learn how to filter out the fluff and get the most from your website traffic by reducing your bounce rates!
Let’s start by identifying what a bounce actually is. According to Google, “A bounce is a single-page session on your site.” In other words, a bounce refers to someone leaving your site after only one page view, so the bounce rate is the percentage of users that are “bouncing” off your website.
Is a high bounce rate bad? It all depends on the role your website plays for your business. If you want people clicking around, then you don’t want a high bounce rate. For example, an eCommerce store would benefit from people browsing (and clicking) around, just as you would want people to look through a brick-and-mortar store. Having a high bounce rate would equivalent to people walking out of your store after a few seconds.
We’re doing a reverse diagnosis, which means we’re going to highlight common causes for high bounce rates, and provide steps you can take for resolving them. If you’re doing these 8 things well, your chances of a high bounce rate will be highly unlikely.
Consider User Experience
Before we look into any specific tips, put yourself in website visitors’ shoes.
The easier you make things for your website visitors, the more likely they’ll be to stick around. Every tip we provide will help you improve the user experience in some capacity. Just be sure to keep the user experience in mind for everything you do regarding your website!
Page Load Speed
The time it takes for your pages to load has a major impact on bounces, especially for mobile users.
Mobile users have short attention spans and are used to having everything instantly, so they’re impatient too. The need for “now” has never been greater. The faster your load speed the better, but you want to aim for less than 2 seconds.
You can test your site with Google’s free page load speed test.
These are the most common fixes for slow loading speeds:
- Consolidating Files
- Reducing Server Response Times
- Enabling Compression
- Minimizing Image Sizes
- Avoiding Unnecessary Plugins
- Reducing External Scripts
- Optimizing CSS Delivery
- Enabling Browser Caching
- Minimizing HTTP Requests
Avoid Messaging Discrepancies
There needs to be cohesive messaging between your inbound content and landing pages.
A piece of inbound content (an ad, email, social media post, etc.) is an invitation to click for more information, which means the user will have expectations after clicking-through. Failing to follow through with your promise will cause them to lose interest immediately.
Optimize For Mobile
More people use mobile devices than desktops now.
Failing to optimize landing pages for mobile will harm your search rankings and destroy your users’ experience. Accommodating all users will ensure you’re not neglecting potential customers.
Here’s the rundown:
Mobile screens are small so they can’t fit a lot of content. Consolidate your content so users won’t get distracted and bounce off. Limit the need to scroll when possible by prioritizing the most important information at the top of the page.
Make Text Readable
Difficult-to-read text will deter users and cause them to bounce. Be mindful of the contrast between your text and background colors. Your text should stand out so visitors will understand your messaging faster and easier.
Avoid Using Pop-ups
We have two reasons why you should not use pop-ups on your website.
- They can slow down your page speed (which we already established is bad).
- They can be really annoying and ruin the user experience.
Include a Large CTA Button
Don’t be afraid to tell your visitors what to do (or at least provide some direction). Having a large button that stands out can compel more action and will lead to higher conversion rates.
A clear and compelling CTA will help move website visitors along.
Ensure Content Offers Value
There has to be something in it for your website visitors. What’s their incentive to stick around if your content doesn’t offer some form of value?
But what is value?
If someone is browsing the internet, it means they’re looking for something. It could be a specific answer to a question, or just something to fill their time. Value is whatever they’re looking for.
Let’s take a lesson from media outlets (the masters of grabbing attention) that rely on these seven elements to determine if a story is newsworthy:
- Impact: Will this story affect your ideal audience?
- Timeliness: Is this story current enough to be relevant?
- Proximity: Is this story close enough to matter to your ideal audience?
- Human Interest: Can this story resonate with people on a personal level?
- Conflict: Is this story dramatic or entertaining enough for it to be relevant?
- The Bizarre: Is there anything strange enough to grab the users’ attention?
- Celebrity: Is there someone famous (or interesting) enough to make this story relevant?
Imagine your website is a media outlet and each page is a story. Do they fulfill any of these elements?
This blog post is both impactful and timely because it helps people improve their websites and digital marketing efforts.
Focus On Quality Traffic
As we’ve said, all website traffic is not created equal and the same is true for bounce rates. Your priority should be to lower bounce rates for high quality traffic so you’re not losing potential customers.
With that said, we have good news and bad news.
The good news is that you won’t have to make any landing page alterations because the concern will be shifting to where your traffic is coming from, rather than how to retain what you catch. This could vary from certain keywords you rank for on Google to low performing ads on Facebook. Everyone’s situation is unique!
The bad news is that you’ll have to analyze your methods for driving traffic to determine where the low-quality clicks are coming from.
The truth is all sites get low quality traffic; you just want to limit it and focus on high quality traffic. It’s more important to focus on driving more quality traffic than deterring low quality traffic. Some things are simply out of our control, so we’ll just have to work with what we have. Focus on the quality of your clicks, not necessarily the quantity!
Is your business making the most of its website traffic? If not, you can take advantage of a free eCommerce website analysis! Active Web Group has over 20 years of experience with businesses of all sizes and industries. Want to talk to a professional now? Give us a call at (800) 978-3417.