17 Jun How to MASSIVELY decrease bounce rate – Systematically.
Bounce rate is not necessarily a bad thing. But it’s something that MUST be understood and managed if you’re to generate leads or sales through a website.
Here’s a tweet that proves just how important bounce rate is for rankings…
Courtesy of SEMRush Study
This article gives you a systemised approach to creating, identifying AND reducing the bounce rate of your website.
It doesn’t matter if you run an ecommerce business. Or you have a website designed to generate leads. You can use these simple tips to give your users a better experience. And in turn, make more sales.
The funny thing is, to reduce bounce rate, you first need to create it.
Here’s the high-level steps that I’ll take you through in how to reduce bounce rate:
- Understand what bounce rate is and why it’s important
- Create content and analyse the bounce rate of each page
- Make changes to improve the content
- Monitor the bounce rate
What is bounce rate? Why is it important?
Bounce rate is the number of visitors that land on your website and leave before visiting a second page.
For example, if 75 people out of 100 leave before navigating to another page, your bounce rate will be 75%.
It’s always presented as a percentage. You can check bounce rate through Google Analytics – I’ll show you how in a minute.
Why bounce rate is important?
Bounce rate is a great way of knowing how engaged your visitors are in your site. It’s also a great way of knowing how targeted your traffic is.
We’re even now being told that the more time a user spends on your site, the higher you will rank in Google. With it having even more influence on rankings than backlinks.
WHAT? I hear you say.
And that’s why bounce rate is more important for websites today than it ever has been.
Writing fresh content provides us with the ability to drastically maximise traffic opportunities.
But that comes with problems and challenges – one being bounce rate.
The problem with blogging is that it can hugely increase bounce rate.
Blogging increases bounce rate for these reasons:
High bounce rate isn’t always bad – Strange – but true.
Kissmetrics gives you a few reasons for this.
You may have a sales funnel that only requires a user to visit that page before doing what you want them to do e.g. enquiring or you may even be looking to direct them to different domain.
Here’s 3 key reasons for a high bounce rate
- Your website shows up for searches that aren’t relevant to the user’s intent.
This is important. If your visitor thinks they are landing on a certain page, only to be presented with something that doesn’t match their needs. They will leave.
- Visitors find the answer to their question.
If someone lands on your website in search for an answer, the chances are, the page they land on will provide that answer. Once they have the answer, they happily leave.
This could be a good reason for bounce rate. But the visitor may not remember you and Google doesn’t know whether your visitor got the answer, so they assume the page was no good. Especially if the user clicks the ‘BACK’ button. That can drop your rankings.
- You don’t have an effective sales funnel on the page they land on.
THIS IS KEY!
Effective sales funnels are the true added value by a blog to a website’s product or service pages.
Here’s what I mean:
Your website sells a product that provides a solution to a problem. These problems are typed into Google every day. If you answer these problems with an article, you can quite easily direct the visitor to your product.
Note: You’re not selling, you’re simply providing a detailed answer to a problem. And if there’s an opportunity to present a product, then do so.
I’ll look at sales funnels in a bit more detail in a minute.
Most of the time, you need to reduce bounce-rate so you know your more users are having a much better experience on your website.
Now we know the importance of bounce rate, let’s do the maths:
Say you have a page that gets 1,000 visitors per month.
A 95% bounce rate means there’s just 50 people out of 1,000 who look at more than one page, on your website. They’re engaged.
If you can reduce that bounce rate to just 65%, then you immediately get 350 people engaging in your brand. That’s an extra
Now if you reduce that bounce rate to 35%, which would be a nice target, you have 650 people engaging in your website every month.
That’s nearly 7,000 more people per year, than you would have had prior to improving your page.
How to create and identify bounce rate using Google Analytics
I know, it sounds weird that I’m telling you to create a low bounce rate. Really what I’m telling you is that you need to create bounce rate. Here’s how you do it
- Publish content consistently
- Be sure to include /blog/ in the url of any blog pages
- Monitor Google Analytics
Publish Content Consistently
As always, do your keyword research.
Find out what people are searching for and whether you have the knowledge to help.
Decide if the search you want to target with your content is likely to generate a sale of your product.
Then create content that resonates with your target market. Make sure you have mini strategies for each of the articles you write.
- List of questions and answers
- A Super blog for outreach promotion
- The ultimate guide
- A Listicle (an article in the form of a list)
Optimise each blog post for a target key phrase.
Keep going with your content over a consistent period of time. You may not get any visitors to your website immediately, but as you create optimised and targeted posts. The traffic will start flowing in.
Monitor bounce rate at least once per week.
- Log into Google Analytics. If you don’t have it set up, read this – Get Started with Google Analytics
- Navigate to
Acquisition >> All Traffic >> Channels
Top Tips to reduce Bounce Rate
There’s loads of actions you can take to reduce bounce rate. Here’s 5 practical tips you can take action on straight away.
Redesign the pages with low bounce rate
This can help dramatically. I’m talking from personal experience on this, so I’ll take you through how it worked for me.
First here’s a screen shot of the before and after designs
BEFORE: High bounce rate design:
The first design looks old fashioned. But it was quick and simple to put together.
AFTER: Low Bounce rate design
The page below used to look like the page above but when I changed the design, it felt like many more people wanted to engage with the website. And this was proven by Google Analytics bounce rate by landing page.
Read more here about our SEO Company in Manchester can help with bounce rate.
Add a contents section to your page
The Google update on 17th April 2018 dropped the rankings of websites. It’s thought by many that these sites had too many pages with 500 words or less. And a very high bounce rate.
That means your pages, from now on, need to have more and more content. But that comes with challenges.
E.g. How do you show someone what is right at the bottom of the page.
My post ‘How to Start a Business’ is over 8,000 words long so it was essential to create a way that people can just click straight through to the sections they want to read.
I needed something simple and easy.
I simply added a contents section at the top and several ID references further down the page. Before I tell you how to do it, here’s what it looks like.
You need to have some html coding knowledge to implement this but it’s not difficult when you know how.
You will want to create the navigation section last because your headers might change as you create the post.
The first step is to give each of the headers and id, it’s written like this
<h2>FINDING YOUR BIG STARTUP IDEA</h2>
Then you need to create a link in the navigation section using a hash as the target url:
<a href=”#business-idea”> FINDING YOUR BIG STARTUP IDEA</a>
Now when your visitors click it, they will jump to the header that’s linked to.
Check out my post to see how it works
Note: you aren’t taking your visitors to a second page by doing this, but you are creating a better user experience, which is often the catalyst for reducing bounce rate
Create a sales funnel
This is huge and can skyrocket your sales!
Everyone knows that to get to the top of a short keyword, such as ‘COFFEE’ is super difficult.
So why not try targeting searches or subjects that your potential customers will then go in to buy your products.
Sticking on Coffee, here’s an example:
We found out that lots of people who are looking to buy fresh coffee wanted to know which would be best for them.
So, we created a post called ‘Which Coffee’.
The blog post looked like this:
The sales funnel looks like this and the orange links are directing people straight to the product pages.
Over time, add visuals to the post like this:
It gave us 2 opportunities:
- Increase traffic from less competitive keywords
- Showcase the products that would be best
The blog post skyrocketed to the front page of Google for the search term ‘Which Coffee’.
It now fluctuates between the top 5 results. And is consistently in the top 3 landing pages of the whole website because it shows up in Google for loads of different search terms, including ‘Best Coffee Beans’.
Reduce page load times
The process for reducing page load time is outside the scope of this post. But there are lots of tools you can use to identify and find tips on how to reduce it.
https://www.pingdom.com/ is a good example, just pop your website in and
To show you how important page load is in reducing bounce rate, here’s a tweet from GrowthHackers SEO.
Add better content and images to the sidebar
This works well if you are using your post to answer a question in just a few sentences. Offering something that’s visually attractive on the side bar can direct your visitors deeper into your website.
Examples of widgets (as they are often know) includes
- Popular Posts
- Offers on products
- Free downloads
- Blog Categories
You never know. Something bright and beautiful on the sidebar might just catch their eye.
So, there you go, just a few practical techniques, you can start using immediately to improve your user experience, reduce bounce rate and in turn improve traffic and sales. The ultimate goal of any business.