Before you start to correct high bounce rates and tweak your design, you need to first start clearly defining what bounce rate means. A bounce rate indicates the percentage of visitors who click off before following any other links or progress further into the site. Users reach a landing page and either find what they were looking for or are not sufficiently encouraged to explore the site further. Bounce rates are one of the most talked about statistics on Google Analytics, but before you start diving into Analytics, make sure you refresh your skills by taking a look through this simple Analytics guide.
Good content promotes user satisfaction which in turn reduces bounce rates. There are a few simple rules around web content that can make the difference between creating an engaging and high performing site and one that simply blends into the background.
Tailor content to interest and engage your target audience.
Make your content stand out from that of competitor sites. Is there a gap in the market that you can use to your advantage? Can you work on information presentation to give it a particular slant or style individual to your brand?
Give your users what they need. This could be simple summaries or in-depth tutorials. It could be images, diagrams, demonstrations, block text or embedded video.
Make A Call To Action
Give users something to do and they are far less likely to bounce from your site. Try providing clear directions as to how your site is used. Include a Buy It Now button or a Try It For Yourself link, or use the example below as inspiration.
You could also give visitors to your website more information they can use: a recipe for a home remedy or step-by-step instructions on effective web design. Use actionable content as a way for your brand to demonstrate its expertise. The Web Designer Depot has some handy dos and donts regarding calls to action.
Clear Site Navigation
Creative and actionable content will only be effective if its easy to use. This means clear navigation and layout is essential. If the structure of your website is confusing or if content is not easily digestible, your bounce rate will continue to be high. Focus on making your website easy to use, like the example below.
To see how fast your website is running, try this simple site speed test. Site speed can be one of the most important concerns to address when working on bounce rates. If a site is slow to load, users could lose interest before theyve even had a chance to look at your content. First impressions count for everything and good site speed is an easy way to promote confidence in the service your site provides. You can also use Analytics to find out how quickly pages of your site are loading.
Luke Clum is a graphic designer and developer from Seattle who is crazy about videography, alpine climbing and earl grey ice cream. You can follow him on Twitter @lukeclum