What is bounce rate and how to fix it?

min read

Most website metrics are easy to understand. That is until you get to bounce rate.

But this metric, while less clear, is one of the most important indicators of the health of your site and the effectiveness of your marketing.

It’s not enough to attract people to your website. You need to attract the right people and keep them there, and that’s where bounce rate comes in.

What is bounce rate?

Bounce rate is the percentage of visitors who come to your website and leave without viewing any other page. So for example, someone views your product page and then immediately exits.

So a low bounce rate below 40% is actually a good thing. It means visitors are viewing multiple pages per session and reading more and more of your content.

A high bounce rate above 60% for content sites is when you need to be concerned. These percentages may be different for your site.

Why is my bounce rate high?

Honestly, there are a bunch of different reasons why your bounce rate could be high. And to uncover the culprit, you’ll need to channel your inner Sherlock Holmes.

Open your analytics platform of choice, whether it’s HubSpot or Google, and we’ll figure out exactly why people aren’t sticking around.

Start your investigation by running Google’s page speed tests. Reducing your page load time will improve the experience for mobile visitors trying to access your site.

Test your site with Google’s PageSpeed Insights tool

On that note, make sure the design is optimised for mobile and it’s easy to find information, no pinching or zooming necessary.

And if you have pop-up ads and autoplay music or videos, get rid of them. This type of disruption only encourages people to hit the back button.

full screen app popup modal
Say “no” to full screen pop-ups and modals

Next, review your bounce rate per traffic source to see if people visiting via email, a referral site paid or another channel are more or less likely to view multiple pages.

If the bounce rate from social looks high, consider if the messaging actually matches the content you’re driving visitors to.

If visitors from organic search are bouncing at high rates, consider if your title tags and descriptions are misleading.

Then look at your top view pages and blog posts. A contact page with a high bounce rate makes sense, but if a landing pages rate is in the same range, you need to get to work on optimising it for conversions.

How can I reduce bounce rate?

You can also reduce bounce rate by improving the user experience and design of your site. Add a related content module to your blog and improve interlinking between posts.

Review your main navigation and footer. Make it easy for visitors to find the most important information about your products or services. Clean professional design is a signal of trust.

Finally, consider the needs and concerns of your target audience.

Does your site’s messaging and architecture clearly address their questions? Do you have a clear conversion path that leads people to more targeted content?

Consider A/B testing copy and imagery to find what makes visitors click to additional content.

By reducing your bounce rate, you’ll improve the user experience, making people wanna stick around and learn all about your brand.

variety of colourful bouncy balls

Caroline Hagan

Caroline brings over 15 years as a Designer and Developer; featured in .NET magazine, the only woman in the UK accredited for Google Mobile Sites. A business mentor with Enterprise Nation, STEM Ambassador and Google Women Techmaker Ambassador Previous client projects include Blackberry, FIAT, Clark Shoes and Sky.