How high is your bounce rate?

Almost every time I assess a client’s website I hear the same question.  What does bounce rate mean?  So time to explain.

On your Google Analytics report you will always see the bounce rate as a percentage and it’s actually the percentage of single page visits where your visitor arrived on a landing page and left from that page.   In short it’s a measure of relevance and quality and if you have a high bounce rate it suggests that visitors are not finding what they are expecting to find i.e. the page they landed on is not relevant and there was nothing else to attract their attention so they left.

A lot of people think the bounce rate is only important on an adwords campaign but in many ways it’s even more important on your organic searches.   You may not be aware but one of the tools Google uses to assess the cost of a click is the quality/relevance of your site on an organic level, so if you have lots of pages with a high bounce rate on your website and you are doing adwords campaigns, you might be paying a bit more for your clicks.

The good thing is that Google Analytics can tell you bounce rates on your site in general, on specific pages as well and on your adwords campaigns.  It can also tell you the number of visitors, where they are coming from, what keywords they used to get there and how long they stayed on your site.   Lots of good reasons for making sure that you sign up for Google Analytics.   It’s not much good having a website if you don’t know what it’s doing for you, is it?

Ideally your bounce rate should be under 50% but a few points over isn’t a major crisis.  You might also note that some pages have a much higher bounce rate than others, which means they might need a bit of a review.  It’s a good idea to navigate your users to other areas of your site from each page, using links, offers, new content. If there is somewhere interesting for them to go they are less likely to “bounce”.

If you require any further information on SEO, adwords or Google Analytics please feel free to contact sue@thecolchesterseocompany.co.uk.