For instance, if you run a mommy blog and someone searches for “what are good first foods for babies” and arrives at your site where you have a list of foods, they may see the information that they were looking for, and then leave satisfied. Similarly, if you have a cooking blog and someone searches for “how long does it take to bake a sweet potato,” finding this information on your blog fulfills the immediate need behind the search. In these types of situations though, the goal is to get these searchers to stick around longer to view your other resources, share your articles, and become a loyal follower. So, while a high bounce rate isn’t necessarily a problem in these cases, it’s still not ideal.
But whether you’re trying to reduce your ecommerce bounce rate or blog bounce rate, the methods are the same. Here are our top tips for bringing bounce rate stats down:
1. Decrease Site Load Time
No one wants to wait forever for a website to load, which is why sites that are on slow servers or bogged down with videos/images often suffer from high bounce rates. These days online searchers have enough options that they’d rather hit the back button and just click on the next site on the search engine results page than wait for a site to load. Decreasing the time it takes for your website to render will always reduce bounces.
2. Remove Pop-Ups
Nothing is more frustrating to people than trying to get to webpage only to be blocked by pop up dialog boxes or ads. This is especially true on mobile devices where pop-ups are even more intrusive to the user experience (UX) than on larger screens.
Many people will just immediately leave a site if they’re bombarded with pop-ups. This is true whether the pop-ups are self-serving (like paid advertisements or requests for visitors to take surveys) or helpful (like live chat or promotional offers). If you’re absolutely in love with pop-ups, just have one – the more you incorporate into your site and the more often they appear, the less likely people are to stick around.
3. Follow Mobile Best Practices
Websites that provide a crummy mobile UX are going to drive away searchers on mobile devices, and considering how prevalent mobile browsing is these days, that’s bound to be a large percentage of visitors. Ensure that your site is not only usable on various types of mobile platforms, but that it has an intuitive navigation, uses a font that’s easy to read, and that your call-to-actions are appropriate for users on all devices.
4. Align Each Page with Expectations
Your title tags, meta descriptions, online ads, and everything else that serve to act as a preview for your page need to be aligned. A mismatch of any of these elements can result on confusion and frustration, driving up bounce rates. For example, don’t have a title tag about homemade baked goods, a meta description about delicious cookie varieties for sale, and then website text about cooking classes.
5. Provide Unique Content
Unless your content is unique and helpful, people won’t stick around. If you’re just using stuff that people can already find elsewhere, there’s no reason for them to stay – they’ll just leave to go find something that actually stands out. This can also hurt your SEO efforts because the search engines won’t be fooled either. Simply put, ensure that your content is fresh, informative, and yours!
6. Use a Clear Call-to-Action
Tell people what you want them to do next. Return visitors may already know how to navigate your site to find exactly what they want, but new visitors need more help. Use a clear call-to-action (CTA) to direct the flow of traffic on your site to achieve an end goal. For an ecommerce site, this might be sending traffic from your homepage to your new arrivals page to a specific product page to the checkout to purchase. For a blog, it might be from an informational article to a newsletter signup page to a social media share. Whatever the goal of your site is, ensure that you’re using CTAs to get people there and test them to achieve optimal performance!
7. Effectively Utilize Whitespace
Sites that are too cluttered are overwhelming, which is why you need to carefully think through what you’ll include on each page, and what you won’t. When it comes to UX, what isn’t on your site is just as important as what is. Whitespace gives visitors’ eyes a place to rest and it helps to draw attention to your CTAs.
8. Balance Text and Images
Just knowing that you need whitespace isn’t enough though. You also need to balance text and image usage. Sites with too much text are off-putting because people don’t want to sit down and read a novel on your site, but sites with too many images often lack the text needed to get people to convert. That’s why you need both in moderation.
9. Eliminate Technical Errors
Broken links and other technical errors can cripple movement on your site, causing people to leave. Ensure that your landing pages in particular are error-free to allow for proper visitor flow across your site.
10. Use Targeted Marketing
The traffic that arrives at your site organically is somewhat beyond your control, but the traffic to your site via your online marketing should be targeted to avoid paying for visitors that will leave quickly and drive up your bounce rate. Using pay-per-click (PPC) marketing is the best way to generate targeted traffic because you can place ads for your products/services/information in front of people at the very moment that they’re looking. PPC advertising allows you to increase brand awareness, attract targeted traffic, and boost conversions. Contact us to find out more information – we help businesses and organizations of all sizes get their message in front of searchers!
Kate Pierce is the owner of LionShark Digital Marketing LLC, a West Michigan internet marketing company. Her areas of expertise include Paid Search, Search Engine Optimization, Business Blogging and Web Copywriting. She lives in the Grand Rapids area with her husband and son and enjoys cooking, watching sports, and spending time together as a family. Like a true digital marketing expert (i.e. geek), she loves talking about current marketing trends… so don’t say you weren’t warned!