One of the important things you will notice when you look at your Google Analytics is Bounce Rate. Today we are going to teach you how to reduce your bounce rate.
Maintaining A Low Bounce Rate
When I started looking at Google Analytics, I noticed my bounce rate – 30.53%
For 2 months I watched it hover between 28 and 30%. I was horrified. Now I have to worry about bounce rate? How do I get it to 100%? 28-30% is terrible!
For those of you new to the blogging world, you are shaking your head thinking, “That poor girl, she really doesn’t know what she is doing! Her bounce rate is 30%!”
And for the veterans out there, you are also shaking your heads thinking, “That poor girl, she really doesn’t know what she is doing! Her bounce rate is 30%!”
You’re both on the same page, right? Wrong! Some of you think that’s a great bounce rate, others think it’s terrible. So who’s right?
Initially, I thought the bounce rate represented the number people who came to my blog and stayed – how many don’t bounce. I thought it meant only 30% of my visitors stayed and the other 70% read one article and left. Wrong again!
It’s the opposite. The bounce rate is the percent of people who leave your site after visiting only one page. In reality, 70% of the people that visit my page stay for more than one read. Only 30% leave after looking at only one page. They bounce. Yeah, I totally missed the obvious.
When I began blogging, I wanted to engage people enough that they would hang on my every word and keep coming back. Turns out my strategy is working! What strategy?
Before I share my particular strategy, there are four quick fixes you may want to consider if they aren’t part of your site:
1.) Related Posts When your readers reach the bottom of your article, it shouldn’t be an ending, it should be a beginning. Introduce them to other things you’ve written with a related posts widget, they may click on something else hoping it’s just as great as what they just read.
2.) Popular Posts Even before I started blogging, I recognized the list of posts in the sidebars and looked for something I might also like. After all, I didn’t happen upon the blog by chance, something brought me there. Maybe there was something that would keep me if it were presented in a clear, eye-catching manner.
3.) Pop-Ups In my opinion, get rid of them. If the first thing I need to do when I get to a site is close a pop-up, I’m not staying. This tells me that it’s more important for them to sell me something or convince me to follow them before I’ve read anything! No thanks, I will likely leave unless I believe I can’t live without the content.
4.) Content There is nothing more important. You need to be clever, endearing, original and entertaining every single time. Or, you could have a great craft, recipe or opinion that no one else can deliver. Whatever you have, make it stunning. Make it something even you keep going back to read because it’s that great. All it takes is one great post and people will want more from you.
Let’s see, I’ve got related and popular posts, no pop-ups and I am clever, endearing, original and entertaining. You’re still reading, aren’t you?
So what else do I have?
Give your readers something to look forward to every week
Some of my readers come back a few times a week. Others wait until Saturday and track back through the week via the links.
Here is my format:
- Each week I pick a topic.
- That topic is split into at least 2 segments, the readers have to read the first article to understand the second and vice versa.
- At the end of each week, I pick the Human of the Week from those article.
- The Human of the Week gets to choose a recipe or craft that I will post.
At least 4 posts per week, all related and all need to be read to get the full story.
How will this work for you? Suppose you are a food blogger, each week (or month) you can provide an entire menu. Give it a theme. Let’s say this week is Italian week. Give them an appetizer on Monday, a main dish on Wednesday, and a dessert on Friday. Link all three posts with words like “Come back Friday for a dessert you’ll want to pair with this pasta!” They will click back and forth between the courses and lower your bounce rate.
This can work for any type of blog. The key is to give readers a theme so they’ll want to look at what you wrote earlier in the week (or month).
Here’s an example during a particularly lazy week when I didn’t feel like writing a lot – I linked a DIY Patriotic Wreath to my Memorial Day post. Clickity-click!
If your bounce rate doesn’t go down right away, don’t get frustrated; it takes time. There are also circumstances that will hurt your bounce rate but may be better for you overall. Have you had a ‘viral’ post lately? Are you getting all the traffic you want and are your readers engaged? If so, don’t worry.
Why do I care about my bounce rate?
100% bounce with 6 visitors = 6 page views
50% bounce with 6 visitors = 9 page views.
Did you see how your page views went up as your bounce rate went down?
We all want more page views.
If you provide your reader with something to look forward to, they will come back. Show them that you foresee their needs; whether it be with a dessert to go with the meal, a hat to go with the scarf or a great jacket to go with that diaper bag.
Readers will recognize your voice, they will identify with you, they will follow you. This is why we blog. We want people to hear us, we want them to want to hear us.
Do you pay attention to your bounce rate? How important is it to you? What do you do to keep people on your site?
Looking for more information about bounce rate and increasing pageviews? Here are some posts you will find helpful:
- Planning A Successful Post Series On Your Blog
- How To Improve Bounce Rate
- 5 Tips To Speed Up Blog Page Load Time