Want to know how to reduce bounce rate? Are all of those blog posts you spend hours creating actually getting read? If not, then it’s time to take a close look at your bounce rate and make some adjustments.
Many bloggers tend to focus on how much traffic they are getting. But if you really want to boost engagement, take a close look at your bounce rate.
What is a Bounce Rate?
A bounce rate measures when a visitor comes to your site, opens a single page, and then leaves.
The bounce rate for an individual page is calculated in Google Analytics by the percentage of visitors on your site who visit a single page and then navigate away from your site.
This is so important information to pay attention to.
Why? Because even if you have popular pages on your site, if visitors leave right away, it’s telling you that something isn’t quite right.
What is a Good Bounce Rate?
A good bounce rate is less than 40%, with somewhere around 55% being average. Pages with high bounce percentages like 65 to 99 percent are not so good.
With that said, the first thing to take into consideration is, what type of page it is.
For instance, a person may spend less time on a home page, or landing page that has a call to action where they might click-through to sign up for a newsletter or purchase something.
However, if you are a writing blog post to educate, persuade, or to solve a problem, then a low bounce rate is what you want for that page.
Here are some reasons a page might have a high bounce rate.
Reasons for a High Bounce Rate
Do you find that the majority of your pages have a high bounce rate? If so, maybe your visitors are having a bad user experience on your site. Factors that can contribute to a high bounce rate include:
- A site that loads too slow
- Fonts or colors that are hard to read
- Poor navigation menus
- Large image files
- Having too many ads on a page
- Poor spelling and grammar
- Low-quality content
How to Improve Bounce Rate
1. Look at your Analytics
Go to your Google Analytics and in the Left menu click Behavior>Site Content> All Pages. This will show you the bounce rate for each page visited, as well as, the average time spent on a page. These two indicators will give you an idea of the type of content visitors are spending more time reading.
2. Set up Clear Navigation
Is it easy to find information on your site? If not, revisit your navigation menus and sidebars and reorganize them. Also, provide a search box to help visitors. The more you can simplify navigation, the easier it will be for visitors to find want they’re looking for.
3. Write Longer Blog Posts
People search the Internet looking for information. By writing longer, more in-depth posts, you have more opportunities to educate, provide and boost engagement.
4. Tweak the Headline
Headlines are the first thing a visitor to your site sees. And using emotional trigger words, statistics, and intriguing statements can draw them in. To check how well your headlines read, try Capitalize My Title or Coschedule to see how well they score.
5. Increase Readability
Increase readability by writing shorter paragraphs, separating blocks of text with subtitles, and increasing line spacing. Line spacing, also known as leading, is the white space between sentences. Keeping that space bigger helps with readability.
6. Internally Link to Other Content
Link to other pages on your site with similar topics. This gives visitors more options to explore. So, instead of just clicking off of your site when they’re done reading, they will stick around longer to help boost your bounce rate.
7. Make Links Open in a New Window
Linking to external sites is a great way to enhance the information you are already providing, and Google likes to see those links on your site as well. So, when you create an external link, be sure to open it up in a new window, so that your site window still stays open. Also, open internal links on your site in a new window, to improve bounce rate on individual pages.
8. Make your Site Mobile Friendly
Did you know the 73% of mobile users have encountered sites that are too slow to load? To check the mobile-friendliness of your site and pages, go to Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test Tool. Not only will you be able to tell if the page is mobile-friendly, but the tool will also tell you what to do to fix the page if it’s not.
9. Speed Up Your Site
A slow site can be extremely frustrating for visitors, especially when the page they want to read doesn’t load quickly. That’s why it’s important to check your site speed to make sure it’s running smoothly. One of the best tools for this is PageSpeed Insights. And if your WordPress blog is slow, try the Hummingbird Plugin or WordPress Super Cache to speed things up.
10. Reduce Image Sizes
Images on your WordPress site can be one of the main reasons your site is slow and has a high bounce rate. One of the best ways to optimize a featured image or gallery is to install the NextGen Plugin and serve your images from the Nextgen Gallery instead of the Media Library.
By following these guidelines to reduce bounce rate, you will ultimately increase readership and boost engagement. It may take time to initially reduce the bounce rate, but if you focus on these areas of your site on a regular basis, over time you will see an improvement.