What is the bounce rate?
The bounce rate measures the percentage of users who arrive at the website and do nothing on the page they entered. That is, they are users who do not click on any element or link within the website.
In other words, the user bounces when he or she does not interact with the page and ends his visit entering only to one page of the site. As you can guess, this metric is used as an indicator of a website’s quality. It also allows you to verify if the page responds to the user intent.
Be careful not to confuse the bounce rate with the exit rate. The second one refers to the percentage of users that click away from a particular page after having visited other pages on your site. In other words, it informs about the users who decide to end their visit to the website on that specific page.
The easiest way to measure the average bounce rate is to use Google Analytics. Log in to the tool, click on Audience, and then click on Overview. There you will be able to access a variety of valuable metrics, among which you can choose the overall bounce rate of the entire site or that of an individual page.
If you want a global analysis, click on the bounce rate, and you will access a graph showing its evolution over a certain period (which you can change in the upper right corner of the page).
And if you want to know the bounce rate of an individual page, follow the path Behavior > Site behavior > All pages. You will see a list of all your website pages and the bounce rates for each of them.
Why is it important for SEO?
Many people ask the same question: is the bounce rate a ranking factor?
For Google to take GA data into account when analyzing websites would certainly be dangerous. You should not forget that if this tool is not implemented in the right way, you cannot trust the data it provides. Moreover, manipulating the bounce rate is very easy.
Fortunately, various sources from Google have confirmed the same thing: The search engine does not consider Google Analytics data for its algorithm.
However, you need to be careful with this subject. It is vital to make sure that users who come to the site from the search engine results page do not return to it (Pogo-Sticking). The reason is that this may influence your website ranking position.
For a successful SEO, it is essential to optimize all aspects of a website. And that is why you should pay attention to the bounce rate since reducing this metric helps achieve this goal (which results, of course, in a better SERP position).
How to reduce your bounce rate
You already know the meaning of bounce rate and the importance of this metric. All that remains is to see how to place it in parameters that will not be excessively harmful to your site.
The truth is that there is only one way to reduce the bounce rate, which is to increase page engagement. On the other hand, there are two ways of analyzing the website’s bounce rate: one from the point of view of website traffic and the other from the page.
When certain traffic sources show high bounce rates, you need to think about the people’s expectations coming to your site from there.
Let’s take an example: let’s say we publish an advertisement on an external website, and most of the users who visit the page and bounce come from that advertisement. Obviously, we have done something wrong. We have not given them what they expected.
In this case, we will have to review the ad we have published and see if it corresponds to what we offer on the page to which it refers.
Let’s imagine now that the page is in tune with what users expect, and yet it has an undesirable bounce rate. It is time to look at the site itself since the problem is there. To this end, we need to analyze several aspects:
- Does it contain links to other pages? And related posts?
- Is it a website with good usability?
- Does it include a call to action on the top half of the page?
- Is the menu easy to use?
- Does it encourage users to continue searching within the same site?