How to Decrease Your Bounce Rate

Decrease

Bounce rate tells you if your site works.

And it also tells you if you’re wasting money.

Bounce rate is the percentage of people who view a page but don’t click a link. They look at what you’ve got, decide they don’t like it, and click the back button. A good bounce rate is below 35%.

If you paid to bring in a visitor (like via Google Adwords) and they bounce, your ad spend goes down the drain. And if you worked your butt off to get a top 3 ranking for a great keyword, a bounce means that your prospect is probably going to check out your competitors.

Landing page bounce rate is one of the most important metrics to monitor constantly. If yours is too high here are some ways to improve it.

Headline Keyword Matching

Headline

Each of your pages’ top keywords has a common theme. You can find this out by looking at your ‘Entrance Keywords’ for a specific page in the Content area of Google Analytics.  It will show you the top keywords that brought traffic to a page.

If 80% of your visitors enter looking for information about ‘red army knives’ and you have an unrelated headline like ‘Discover the Difference’, your bounce rate is most likely really high. Most of your visitors won’t be immediately satisfied and they’ll bounce.

Web surfers want what they want and they want it now. (Say that three times fast.)

So give it to them! Put text related to your entrance keywords in big bold letters at the top of your page. Bryan Eisenberg calls this maintaining a scent trail.

More Images

Army Knife

Pictures are another bounce rate reducer.

It’s easy to know you’re in the right place when you see an image of what you’re looking for. Tons of text may be relevant but it can also be daunting.

Put images of your page theme near the top of your page. If your entrance keywords relate to ‘red army knives’, have a nice big picture of a red army knife into the optimal viewing area to show people they’re in the right place.

Discover Your Optimal Viewing Area

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This handy tool shows you the percentage of web users who can see your content without scrolling.  Enter your page URL and see the percentages overlaid on your site.

Move your most relevant content to where the most people can see it right away. This means headlines, pictures of relevant things, and a little bit of text within the 99% area of your page.

If your relevant content is outside the viewing area your bounce rate will be high.

Happy testing!

Tags: bounce rate, decrease bounce rate, lower bounce rate

  • tarik

    Great article! I think Analytics is a dangerous game, many marketers are measuring the wrong metrics such as unique visitors. Bounce rate is probably the most important in my opinion and specially when you compare the traffic sources and identify all the factors involved in the behavior of your site visitor.

  • http://www.mcculloughdesigns.com/blog Joseph McCullough

    Awesome post. My site definitely needs more graphics. I just started my PPC campaign, and I’m already noticing clicks without actions. I’ll probably pause the campaign until I touch things up a bit. Thanks for the post.

  • http://www.andygaskin.com Andy Gaskin

    I think good web-writing is a challenge for many organizations who are just diving in for the first time. The tendency is to come up with ‘clever’ headlines rather than descriptive. Clever is great for magazines and books, but when you need to grab folks’ attention right away, a clear “what is this page about” title makes a huge difference.

  • http://www.webpagefx.com Xander Becket

    @Tarik – Different metrics have different uses, but in terms of on-site visitor optimization bounce rate is the first thing every marketer should look at.

    @Joseph – Check out Google’s Website Optimizer. You can test different page designs at the same time!

    @Andy – Yep headlines are so important. The holy grail is a headline that captures attention and summarizes the content correctly. Check out http://www.copyblogger.com/magnetic-headlines/ for some awesome examples.

  • Pingback: The How and Why of Bounce Rates : Online Marketing Tips ~ Blogging Your Brand with Wordpress

  • http://www.thefriendlyblogger.com/ Lisa

    This was really a very beneficial post for me. I have been actively working to reduce my bounce rate and increase conversions. I had no idea this browser size tool existed. I had not been utilizing the proper space! Changes have been made. Thank you!!

    Cheers,
    Lisa

  • http://www.findallanswers.com Blogging Tips

    Eye opener. The tool from Google is something worthwhile to check. I think that this tool will strongly tempt me to tweak my blog.

    Thanks for the valuable information.

    Jane.