Most of the time when you’re dealing with website analytics you would come across the term Bounce Rate. An unhealthy bounce rate can be the bane of any marketer, designer or even developer.
What are bounce rates?
Bounce Rate refers to the percentage of users who had entered and left your website without making any meaningful interaction. Bounce rate is calculated by the total number of one-page visits divided by the total number of entries to a website. In Google Analytics, a bounce is calculated specifically as a session that triggers only a single request to the Analytics server.
For example, when a user opens a single page on your site and then exits without triggering any other requests to the Analytics server during that session, it would be considered a bounce.
Finding out your bounce rate.
Before you are able to figure out the current standing of your page bounce rate you would need to have a web analytics tool installed on your site. For the simplicity of this article, I will be using Google Analytics as my reference. Google Analytics is a free web analytics service offered by Google that tracks and reports website traffic and allows you to analyze in-depth detail about the visitors on your website.
If you already have Google Analytics set up, all you have to do is click on Acquisition → Overview and under the Behaviour tab you should be able to see the Bounce Rate. I personally prefer using Acquisition as it further breaks down your bounce rate based on the traffic sources.
What is a good range for Bounce Rates?
Most websites will experience bounce rates between 26% and 70%. As a rule of thumb, bounce rates that fall in between the range of 26-40 per cent is excellent, 41 to 55 per cent is roughly average, and 56 to 70 per cent is higher than average.
A bounce rate below 20% is usually a bad sign. If your bounce rate seems too good to be true, it probably is. The analytics implementation is almost certainly broken. Under 20% is highly unlikely and it could be due to the website being built in a way that forces most users to take at least one action before leaving. It could also be due to the fact that you may have duplicate analytics code, incorrectly implemented event tracking or third party add-ons such as live chats that trigger an event.
Are high bounce rates bad?
Well, it depends. If the success of your site depends on users viewing more than one page, then, yes, a high bounce rate is bad. For example, if your home page is the gateway to the rest of your site (e.g., news articles, product pages, your checkout process) and a high percentage of users are viewing only your home page, then you don’t want a high bounce rate.
On the other hand, if you have a single-page site like a blog, or offer other types of content for which single-page sessions are expected, then a high bounce rate is perfectly normal.
What are the main reasons for a high bounce rate?
Poor Pagespeed – If your page takes too long to load, it is highly likely that users will become impatient and leave the page before viewing any key content.
Poor Ad/Keyword Relevance – If you are targeting highly irrelevant keywords or your ad creatives and copies do not properly communicate your brand message it can create a disconnect between what users see on the ad and on the page.
Poor Page Design – Users may find it hard to navigate through your page and notice actionable CTAs hence leaving them frustrated and making them leave without taking any meaningful actions.
Broken Links / Error 404 – Obviously if the page itself doesn’t work, 100% of the users who land there would most likely immediately leave the page.
Intrusive Advertising/Offers – If your page immediately bombards the users with external links, ads or pop-ups this inadvertently creates a negative user experience leading them to bounce from your page.
Pages Unresponsive For Mobile – Year on year we see rapid growth in the number of mobile users and the amount of time people spend on their smartphones. If your page is not mobile responsive you are ultimately leaving all mobile traffic to be a bounce.
Bounce rate is an important metric you would use to analyse your marketing efforts. You can use it to measure if you’re living up to your visitors’ expectations and whether they engage with your website the way you want them to. So you can use the bounce rate to decide which pages need more attention. Meeting your visitors’ expectations and making your web pages more inviting all leads to creating a better website. And we all know that awesome websites rank better!
Curious how you can improve your website? Speak to one of our UI/UX experts today and contact us at [email protected].