For business owners, having a website is crucial to promote your products, and attract new customers and clients. It represents your whole brand to the online community. While setting up a website can be quite straightforward, maintaining it is a whole other story. There are a lot of things that you need to take into account when maintaining a website – and one of them is the bounce rates.
What is a bounce rate?
A bounce rate is defined as the percentage of visitors that leave your webpage without taking any action such as clicking on a link, filling out a form or making a purchase. Imagine going into a store and walking right back out of it without making any rounds to try any of their products, nor check out their deals and promotions. A bounce rate is the same effect in a digital realm.
The bounce can be triggered by quite a lot of factors such as:
- Returning to search results
- Closing the browser
- Entering a new URL in the address bar
- Following an external link
- Staying inactive (timing out the session)
- Viewing the entire page but not interacting with any elements, then exiting the website
Are bounce rates important?
As a business owner, a bounce rate serves as an indicator of whether your digital marketing is successful or not. You might attract quite a huge number of traffic to your website but if they do not engage, then there is no point as they do not convert. You may check your traffic sources (social media, pay-per-click, SEO, etc) to pinpoint the exact problem but sometimes, the problem lies with the website itself.
If you fail to meet their expectations, they are certainly not going to come back. There are a lot of possibilities that can make your visitors turn away during the first impression – broken links, slow loading speeds and a rarely updated website are among the many reasons why.
How to reduce your bounce rate?
To identify which landing pages causes you the high bounce rate problem, Google Analytics is the most common tool that can help you with that. You can do this by going to Google Analytics and clicking on Behaviour » Site Content » Landing Pages.
Here are the few strategies that can help you to reduce the high bounce rate.
- First impression counts
According to Nielsen Norman Group, “user experience” encompasses all aspects of the end-users’ interaction with the company, its services and its products.
In other words, user experience is the overall feeling of a user when they visit your website. If a user has a good overall experience while browsing your website, they are most likely to return.
The first step in this direction is to create a useable website that looks equally good on all platforms and devices. Watch carefully how your users act while they are on the site and how their decisions are influenced.
- Fast and furious
One thing that all Internet users have in common is their animosity towards a website with slow loading speed. The longer it takes to load, the more likely for a user to bounce out of the page – or even worse, to your competitor’s site.
Tools like Pingdom and Google PageSpeed are a great help that can optimise every landing page on your site. A study by Akamai claims that if your website takes longer than three seconds to load, you could be losing nearly half of your visitors.
There are so many ways to speed up your site such as optimising your images, using a content delivery network and adding better caching. You may also consider switching to a faster hosting provider for better user experience.
- Keep your blog fresh with the right content
According to HubSpot, businesses that frequently update their blogs with fresh content can gain more leads than those who do not. However, it is necessary to separate POWERFUL content from the right content.
Powerful content may elicit a “wow” response from your readers, but it does not solve their problems. Meanwhile, the right content will inspire them – but it will also give informative tips to execute and deliver results for them.
If you are new to blogging, a simple WordPress theme with the right plug-ins will be your hero because it is updated often and maintains responsiveness on the back end. Your job is to keep visitors responsive.
- Do not disrupt the UX
One thing that will never change is that most people will always HATE pop-ups. This topic is highly discussed among site owners and marketers – whether to use pop-ups or to avoid them.
Too many pop-ups used will certainly annoy users and this will lead to a higher bounce rate. Some marketers like to use aggressive or even bullying language in their pop-ups, this will certainly leave a bad impression to users and they most likely would not come back.
On the other hand, there are times where pop-ups work. There is no denying that they can help your email list to grow quickly.
If you still want to have pop-ups on your site, go for it. But if you want to build a long-term site that generates lots of organic visitors, consider limiting the number of pop-ups used and make it as least annoying as possible.
Some pop-ups are well crafted and can turn visitors to long-term readers, which is part of increasing conversion rates.
- Make your site readable
Much of the content on the majority of websites is in text format. It is disappointing that this significant aspect of the user experience on any website is often the most overlooked. However, it is one of the most vital elements that could form the visual appeal of your site.
You need to ensure that the text on your website can be read easily on all devices. It should not be too thin – otherwise, users would have to squint or zoom in to read it. Hence, make sure to use font sizes that are wide enough on smaller displays.
Typography or readability is not limited to the choice of font size and colour. You will need to make sure that the text on your website looks great. There should be enough line spacing, padding and margins to make the text look beautiful and neat.
Another significant thing to remember is the vocabulary and style that you want to use on your website. It is best to use simple-to-understand language with a natural conversational tone.
Other than the above tips and tricks, there are still more ways that you can follow to reduce your bounce rate. However, you just need to be consistent and always keep an eye on your site. Keep growing your site’s audience. When you please your users, they will happily inform others about you – thus increasing your search traffic, inbound links and lead generation.