Bounce and exit rates are often confused, but have different definitions and purposes. Bounce rate is the percentage of visitors that hit a page and don’t visit any others within the same site. It should be used to measure the effectiveness of landing pages and is connected to SEO and paid advertising campaigns. In some cases, a page may be designed to give the consumer the information they need and nothing else. In this instance, bounce rate may not be a relevant metric.
Exit rate, on the other hand, is the percentage of visitors that leave a site from a given page. It should be used to monitor specific pages in a process, such as a “shipping options” page that appears during the checkout process. A high bounce rate means you are making a bad first impression; a high exit rate means you have a leak in the process.
Bounce rate stats will differ depending on the type of sites and pages you’re measuring. In Google Analytics, there is a benchmarking section that allows you to compare your site’s bounce rate and metrics to other sites based on size and category.
A blog that offers all of its content on one page will have a high bounce rate. Generally speaking, blogs are reported to average an 80% bounce rate, and this paired with other metrics like time on site and number of comments could be more helpful. The best standard is to measure an individual page’s bounce rate over time.
* Good Web Layout And Design : You should be careful when choosing between magazine and normal layout theme. The look of your site’s design can force your visitors to stay.
* Relevant Content : If your blog is about Animals, then publish articles related to Animals category alone. Don’t write about Fruits and Vegetables. Because visitors will expect more from Animals category. Each page of your blog should be on-topic.
* Clear and Proper Navigation : Let the users know where they are. Every blog should have breadcrumb. Have a proper archives section. Place the navigation menu near the top of the page. Use simple and clear words for navigation options. Don’t use too many links there.
* Good and Original Content : Always publish original content. Never publish duplicate content which will affect your blog in several ways. Your blog’s content should be worth reading.
* Avoid Distractions : Avoid pop-ups, external toolbars and anything similar to that which causes distractions to the visitors. You can also avoid using Text In Link ads. Trust me, it decreases page views.
* Minimize Pages : Try to minimize the number of pages you have on your website/blog. Keep it simple and clear, so that your visitors will not get confused.
* Optimize With Keywords : Always use the keywords within your articles. For example, I have a post titled “Tips For Improving Your Blog’s Alexa Rank“, and then I will use the keywords like “Improve Alexa Rank”, “Alexa Rank Tips” and so on. This will indeed increase the value of the keywords on the search engines.
* Good and Effective Headlines : Each page’s title should match the content within that page. Don’t try to use misleading page titles.
* Offer subscriptions : You can offer RSS feeds and E-mail newsletters by which readers can easily subscribe and get daily updates. This will help in enhancing your site’s bounce rate because those readers will come back to read more.
* Good Quality Links : Try to acquire as many good links as possible that points to your blog or blog’s page. Those links should have correct anchor text. You can hook other webmasters to link to your pages by placing genuine content in your pages. Avoid link exchange since there is a possibility of losing PageRank on both sides.
* Popular Posts : You can use Popular Posts plugin and list the top and popular articles in your site’s sidebar.
* Related Posts : There are many ways to show related posts on your blog. My favorite is Yet Another Related Posts Plugin (YARPP). You can try that. Showing related posts with images/thumbnails also works.
* Internal Linking : By internal linking your readers can know about other content of your site without having to search for it. Interlink only if it is related to the article and you can also do this to your old articles. Try to link between your old articles as reference.
* Place Search Box : You can provide your visitors with the option to search on your blog at the top. If they cannot find anything interesting on the landing page, they can use search option to navigate into the site.
* Page SEO : Provide proper URL, title and keyword optimization. For WordPress users, I recommend All In One SEO plugin.
* Eliminate Bad Traffic : If you’re getting/buying traffic from other sites and it is not profitable to you, then you need to eliminate all those sources. Check which PPC keywords are bouncing and shut those keywords.
* Optimize 404 Pages : Many blogs have ugly 404 error page. That makes the bounce rate to bounce more. Your visitors will leave your site and look elsewhere for the information they were looking for. So optimize the error page. Provide some solutions and suggestions there. You can check HB‘s 404 Error page.
* Optimize The Sidebar : Remove all those useless and time consuming widgets from your site’s sidebar and try to include widgets such as “Popular Posts” and “Recent Articles”. You can also use “tag cloud” in the sidebar.
* Improve loading speed : Don’t make your visitors to wait. Your blog’s page views will automatically increase if the pages load faster and quicker.
* Add Relevant Images : Make sure you add relevant and related images to the articles. Provide good resolution and quality images.
* Avoid External Links : External links on your blog’s main page can make the bounce rate very high. So you can avoid external links on the first page that visitors see when they land on your site. Try to reduce the number of outgoing links.
* Comparing : Compare the page which gets lower bounce rate with the page that gets higher. Ask your friends and other fellow bloggers the difference between them. This one helps a lot.
* Analyze Bounce Rate : I recommend Google Analytics for analyzing your site’s bounce rate. Check your site’s bounce rate regularly and see if there is any change. Study the reports. See which page gets the lowest bounce rate and highest bounce rate. You can also check your site’s bounce rate through Alexa.
* Ample Content : Try to have minimum 400-600 words of content on your site’s pages. Try to provide sufficient content to your site visitors. Let it be in the form of images, text or videos.
* Targeted Keywords : Your Keywords should be specifically targeted for the content on your site. Bounce rates are also influenced by wrongly optimized keywords.
Do you know any other tip to improve/reduce bounce rate? Please share it in the comments!