So…what is a Bounce, anyway?
In a nutshell, a Bounce is when a user goes to your website, briefly looks at 1 page then leaves (single page views). A lot of people look at their Google Analytics and see “Bounce Rate 63%” they then gasp and hit the panic button and assume “This is terrible! I’m losing 63% of my traffic”. Which is usually followed by a Google search to determine what your bounce rate “should be”. This is the equivalent to searching WebMD about your sore thumb and WedMD ultimately tells you you’re going to die. Your bounce rate search will turn up the same result, which is your websites home page has an incurable case of flumonious-shingles and will be dead soon.
Hold on, it’s probably not that bad.
First, we need to learn the difference between a “good bounce” and “bad bounce”. If someone queries a search engine from their phone, finds your site, and clicks-to-call, which takes them off the page – that’s a bounce. A very good bounce! On the other hand, if someone accesses your site and leaves after 1 second because they’ve realized it’s not at all what they wanted or your site looks so spammy that they don’t think it is legit, that’s a bad bounce.
So, let’s talk about your website. Every website has a goal and that goal is to get someone to do something. If you operate an e-commerce site, you want them to buy a product. If you offer services, you want them to fill out a contact form, call you, or schedule an appointment. If you have a blog, you want people to read your information. Different websites have very different bounce rates. E-commerce sites have lower bounce rates 25% to 45%. This is typical of shopping, as the user is looking around at different products and options. On the other end of the scale, blogs have bounce rates as high as 90%. People want to learn something, they ask Google a question, click straight to a blog post, skim it and leave. We get more concerned about a bounce rate under 20% than we do about a rate over 80%. Low bounce rates typically tell us traffic to the site is low, making it difficult to learn behavior. If we have a higher than expected bounce rate, we can figure out where people are leaving, determine why, and course correct.
Next, we need to see what analytics are telling you about devices that are looking at your website. Users accessing by mobile have an average bounce rate around 60%. Tablet users are around 50% and desktop users are in the low 40’s. If your site has a higher than expected bounce rate for mobile devices, your users could be telling you something. Maybe your site is not as mobile friendly as you think. Maybe the navigation is bad.
Last, we see where traffic is coming from. If a top Google keyword is producing good traffic but high bounce rates. Go look at the landing page. Does it line up with the search result query? If users are looking for a specific product and the link takes you to the home page as opposed to the product page, that should tell you something. If your direct traffic has a high bounce rate, it’s an indicator that something is also wrong. Users are not getting what they were expecting. Google Analytics is an incredible tool and your bounce rate is a great indicator of user behavior and can teach you a lot on how to fix or improve your bounce rate.
At Transformation Marketing, we have several people on our team who are Google Analytics Certified, meaning they are well-versed in reading and understanding your website’s analytics and can help determine how your website is performing. Then, we also have the manpower to fix or improve anything that needs it! Helping you optimize not only your website, but your overall online marketing campaign is what we do. And we do it darn well. Now… let’s bounce!