When looking at a website, most people will land on the front page, click around a bit, and spend some time considering the content. Other times, a visitor will land on the site and leave instantly, not immediately finding what he or she was looking for. When this happens, and a person does not navigate further into your site, this is a bounce. Usually, this is a bad thing as it is hard to convert a visitor into a customer when they leave the site immediately. Plus, a high bounce rate can indicate that your site relevant for a keyword phrase, which can affect your SEO visibility. For these reasons, it’s important to concentrate on your site’s bounce rate; here are four steps to improve it drastically:
1) Great content: First and foremost, if you want to get people to stay on your site, you must give a pretty darn good reason. While graphics and other things can help with the look, you must still remember one mantra: content is king. When you keep this in mind, you can create the best pages for your visitors. When they read your content and find value, they are likely to continue reading and, in due time, spend money. Find a way to make your content different from others in your industry. You have no option but to be compelling.
2) Easy Links/Navigation: When a visitor comes to your website, they should find what they are looking for quickly, otherwise, they may grow frustrated and leave the site. To ensure your visitors stay, you should spend some time adjusting your UX (user experience) to determine a smooth and easy-to-use navigation. Make sure your site is well organized, that your internal site search is easily accessible, and that you’re not overwhelming the user with too many choices. Remember: if they have to go beyond 3 clicks into a site to get to what they need, they are much more likely to bounce.
3) Call-to-action: All-too-often, a site owner will have a compelling site with a lot of information, but will still struggle to get people to convert. When you don’t give people a reason to take the next step, many visitors leave the site and never return. To fix this serious issue, you need to have a call-to-action on every page, in some way. When a reader browses the page, he or she must feel compelled to convert, whether it’s providing contact information, making a purchase, or clicking through to the next page. You have to drive action and consider every page on your site to be a landing page.
4) Tracking: If you have a website, utilizing Google Analytics is an absolute must. With GA, you can get to the bottom of your bounce rate issues by seeing which pages have the highest bounces and where that traffic is coming from. In some cases, you will see people leave some pages more than others, which may give you insight into the reasons why. Do you see a trend in these pages? A lack of content? No clear call to action? Without this data, you’re flying blind in determining ways to reduce bounce rate. With GA, you can hone in on specific pages that need your attention.
Fortunately, with some slight changes, you can fix your site and see it rise in the rankings, both against your competitors and organically. Not only that, but you’ll likely see a better return on conversions with a friendlier site.