Bounce Rates & Content

Everyone is always talking bounce rates, but what does it mean to you?

Bounce rate is the biggest indicator any business can have that their content is not on target and not what the consumer wanted or expected when they landed on that page. It’s normally a sure fire signal that you need to reconsider the design of your landing pages and implement a new marketing strategy for that content. Google Analytics is filled with lots of metrics that can lead to confusion about how/why/when, but bounce rate is the Metric that nobody should ignore.

What is bounce rate?

Bounce rate, put simply is the percentage of visitors who leave your content after visiting one page and don’t stay on the page for greater than 60 seconds.

What causes a user to bounce from your site? It’s normally an indication of one of the following:

Your content wasn’t the content that was expected.
The page took too long to load and they left your site.
The visitor got the information they wanted in under 60 seconds and weren’t compelled to move onto any other content
No clear calls to action on the landing page, what should they do next?
Bounce rate is always related to time and time spent, in whatever form it takes. It’s a direct measure of the level of engagement and satisfaction that visitors have with your content.

What to do if you have a high bounce rate?

There are lots of things to do if your bounce rate isn’t playing well, but here are a few steps to take to help with combating the issues with bounce rate.

Check your page speed, see how long it takes for the average page load time. There are also some great tools that you can use to establish and analyse why your page speed is so low. On average, this article should load in under 4 seconds. This obviously isn’t guaranteed, but you can do everything you can to ensure that they design is good, the images are optimised and that your hosting is optimised to deliver the content.

There are some great tools that you can use to find out what your page speed is:
Google Analytics – Not very granular, but you will get an average across users and pages.
PingDom.com – You’ll see exact reasons why your page is loading slowly and be able to identify what needs to change.
WebPageTest.org – It doesn’t look as pretty as PingDom, but offers the some very detailed reporting on page performance.

Consumers are impatient, if the rest of the web is 50% faster than your content delivery, the expectation has already been set on how fast your site should be… optimise.
Find out how people got to your content, Use google analytics to identify how people landed on that content and the search terms they used to find it. Perhaps you’re web pages content is incorrectly focused from an SEO perspective and you need to adapt it to ensure people are arriving for the right reason.
Adapt Your Bounce Rate, this is one that should be used with caution. You can fire events when a user scrolls or reduce the default bounce rate from 60 seconds to whatever you choose. But remember that if you lose visibility of bounces you are losing very valuable information, so never try to adapt it just to make the figure look better.
Always give a call to action, this is the most fundamental option to follow and the most essential. Whether it is another article that is linked from 1 page to another. Or prompt pushing them onto the next part of trying to acquire them as a lead. All pages should have a call to action that is clear, concise and delivers the exact message of what they will get when they follow that action.
Deliver On Expectations, Content consumers always get frustrated when they don’t get what they expected from a click, so make sure you’re honest with your delivery. Give them exactly what they want when they arrive on the page. If you deliver this every time, you will create trust in your brand and your content.
Engage the reader, good content delivers, bad content will always bounce. When you create content, make sure it engages the consumer, ensure the messages you deliver relate to the subject and make sure you meet their expectations.

What next?

If you’re not sure on how to deliver on all or any of these, then you’re missing out on valuable opportunities for your business.  Give Sum Factors a call, we’ll deliver on all of the above without even breaking a sweat.

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