What are bounces?

Bounces represent the percentage of users who enter your website then leave without viewing other pages. The minimum time is determined by the session timeout of the analytics tracking software (Google Analytics). A high bounce rate might suggest that the site entrance page is not relevant to visitors. Web analytics guru Avinash Kaushik says that a bounce rate below 30% is good, but a rate beyond 60% may be a cause of concern. Visitors can bounce by:

  • Clicking a link to a different website
  • Clicking “Back” to leave the site
  • Closing the window
  • Typing a new URL
  • Session timeout

Why your site may have a high bounce rate

Internal factors
  • Web design and Usability: Design should be simple with minimal clutter
  • Website content: Content should add value to visitors and ensure it is well-written to keep visitors engaged
  • Website navigation: Must ensure it is easy and clear for visitors to go from different pages to find what they are looking for
Marketing factors
  • Wrong keyword selection: This is where a large amount of traffic will be driven from so you must ensure that keywords will optimize your website
  • Ad copy: These represent your site in the paid search result, thus must be aligned with what the site is offering
  • Page title: The message in the page title must be in line with the content of that page
External factors
  • Irrelevant results from search engines: Although this is not common, it may result in a few extra visitors who will bounce

How to keep bounce rates low

Mario Pergollno in her blog Marketing Analytics Deep DIve: Bounce Rates and Why They Matter, highlights three main factors to help keep bounce rates low:

  1. Understand bounce rates for overall site versus specific landing pages: can help determine if traffic rose or declined over specific time periods for example after launching a particular campaign
  2. Optimise keywords: Measure the number of visitors driven to your site through specific words → Compare against competitors
  3. Determine which traffic sources are sending the most relevant traffic: particular segments of traffic may require unique landing pages

Reducing your bounce rate

  • Ensure you have a specific call to action. Provide fewer call to actions for visitors (such as joining an email list) to make sure visitors are not overwhelmed.