All your SEO (Search Engine Optimization) efforts will not help if your site’s bounce rate is high. Why put all your time and money in driving traffic to a site that people are quickly leaving? So let’s discuss Bounce Rate and how to decrease it.
Okay, let’s start for my more novice readers …. What is Bounce Rate?
Bounce Rate: A bounce occurs when a web site visitor only views a single page on a website, that is, the visitor leaves a site without visiting any other pages before a specified session-timeout occurs. There is no industry standard minimum or maximum time by which a visitor must leave in order for a bounce to occur. Rather, this is determined by the session timeout of the analytics tracking software.
A good illustration in the brick-and-mortar world would be as if a prospect or customer visited your storefront, read your front door sign, took a peak inside the window but instead of coming inside to investigate your product further, they moved on to the next retailer instead. If customer after customer did this, you’d start to research and revise your curb appeal. You’d ask yourself, “Why are customers not impelled to step inside and look around?”
High Bounce Rate = Conversion Killer
The same is true for your website … if you see a high bounce rate, it means a percentage of your site’s visitors come to your site but leave shortly after arriving.
Your website’s goal is to get your visitors to stick, to spend time clicking around the site, perusing content and build toward a conversion. High bounce rates are a conversion killer, and anything you can do to increase the time on site and number of page views will most likely directly correlate to your site’s success and your bottom line.
So, why are your site visitors leaving? And how can you increase your website’s stickiness?
Easy Ways to Decrease Bounce Rate
- Help your visitors navigate easily … provide them with clear and obvious paths to get the content they may be looking for. Avoid confusion and frustration by providing easy-to-use and prominent navigation menus, organized with drop-down menus, and always make sure users can get to any page on your site from every other page.
- Professional and Engaging Design … if your website looks and feels like it was thrown together, without proper planning and appealing design, it will reflect poorly on your business. Just as a messy, cluttered and disorganized store or retail space would offend and repel new customers, so would a webpage that lacks the visual appeal of the company’s brand, message and personality.
- Immediately and Clearly Define your Message! One of the biggest causes of a high bounce rate is visitor confusion. If a new visitor to your site has to figure out or hunt down information telling them what your site or company does, that’s an immediate red flag. Your site’s purpose should be immediately evident, and expressed clearly in both its design and its content.
- Avoid Distractions … the use of pop-ups, third-party ads, auto-play video or audio files, or disruptive fly-outs can interrupt the visitor’s experience and your message. Get out of your visitor’s way and reduce the visual and audio noise to allow the visitor to find what they’re looking for.
- Increase Readability … with the use of good contrast, bullet points, well-placed images and bold text or headings, you can present your content in way to encourage your visitors to want to read further and to be able to easily scan your homepage for what they are looking for. Be conscious of your user’s time and get to the point!
- Reduce Load Time … if your visitors are waiting for heavy images and backgrounds, third-party ads, widgets and poorly implemented video or audio files, this could add to your high bounce rate. The slower your pages will load — the faster your users will leave. Period.
The point of the story is to make your site visits easy and enjoyable. Take a walk through your website (or even your store) and endeavor to see things through your customers’ eyes. The best marketing advice I can offer is think like a consumer. If you see areas that need improvement, your customers will too, so call a professional web designer today to enhance your online storefront or company experience.
For more information: www.startupproduction.com