Proven methods for lowering your site’s bounce rate

Aug 7, 2015 by
Proven methods for lowering your site’s bounce rate

Put simply, bounce rate refers to the percentage of people who arrive on a landing page and then leave without interacting with a site. While this metric can be misleading, because people can still have a good experience with your site without interacting (they may come back at a later date), bounce rate is still an important metric for determining whether you have issues with your site which are causing people to turn away.


Ultimately, a lower bounce rate results in more interaction, which results in more conversions, and thus more revenue for your business. Making a concerted effort to lower your site’s bounce rate is therefore highly recommended. Here are some proven methods which will help you to achieve this goal.

1 – Cater for international audiences

If you receive a significant amount of traffic from countries which do not share your language, as is common in the digital era where businesses do not need to operate within a set geographical region, it’s safe to say that you could benefit from having the site available in multiple languages. This is especially true if you run an e-commerce site. If your bounce rate is high for international visitors, a lack of content in their native language is likely to be the culprit. A competent language services professional will be able to translate the content of your site while taking into account cultural differences and other nuances that you may not have considered yourself.

2 – Improve your content

Another common reason why people will leave your site without interacting is that your content does not provide them with what you are looking for. It may be the case that your content does contain the right information, but the presentation is inadequate. For instance, people have a very short attention span when browsing the internet, so splitting your content into digestible paragraphs with catchy sub-headings is definitely beneficial. You may also wish to consider including visual elements on your landing page – it has been shown that an animated explainer video can boost conversions by as much as 20%!

3 – Include more internal links

chain-link-seocambridgeIf you have a high bounce rate, it may well be the case that you have the resources that people are looking for, but somehow they aren’t finding them. You may wish to include more links throughout your landing page to other areas of the site that people will find useful. This will not only improve the general navigability of the site, but it will help to build immediate trust by demonstrating you have the expertise and capabilities to solve their problems. Remember that people only really use the main navigation of a site if they’re really lost. It’s much better to lead them where they want to go using contextual links.

You may wish to include a prominent call to action (CTA) on your landing page too, perhaps in the form of a banner. This will help to funnel people to the areas of your site which will be of most interest to them.

In one of his blog posts, content marketing specialist David Rosam imparts some great advice on the topic of CTAs.

“You cannot afford to let your customer slip into the slightest confusion. They must know exactly what to do, and preferably exactly why they should take the next step towards parting with their money or e-mail address. Make it easy and clear, and you’ll get more conversions. And, if you want to be really successful, try different wordings, words vs graphics, words vs videos, different colours, different offers. Measure the results and get to know your customers better.”

4 – Set external links to open in a new window

This is especially pertinent if your visitors are arriving at the site via your blog (which is likely to contain numerous external links per post). In this scenario, visitors may arrive at your site and then leave after following one of your external links to a different domain. To combat this, set all external links to open in a new window so that when your visitor is finished with the external link, they can come return to your site and finish reading your content (and hopefully explore your site further).

5 – Consider a redesign

If you have tried the previous tips and are still experiencing a high bounce rate, it might be time to consider a redesign. Reach out to your fans on social media (perhaps also via an embedded survey on your site), as well as other impartial third parties, and ask them for feedback about your site design. This should reveal any hidden gremlins which may have been turning people away from your site. With tools such as Crazy Egg, you can actually get a visual heat map of how people interact with your site, revealing problem areas which you can then correct with a redesign.

Summary

Ultimately, the best approach to lowering your bounce rate is to work out how to provide more value to the people who visit your site (and determine where you are not providing enough value already). This may come in the form of improving your content, making your site more navigable or even including a spectacular explainer video which condenses your products and services into an easily-digestible 2 minute story.


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