02 May 2010

Four Tips to Decrease Website Bounce Rates

Website Optimization No Comments

Bounce rates determine the effectiveness of your website.  It is extremely important to monitor the bounce rate of your websites entry or landing pages, and take steps to decrease bounce rates.

What are Website Bounce Rates?

Bounce rates are the statistics of website viewers who only visit one page of your website, and leave your website without visiting any other pages.  Bounce rates occur when a visitor clicks on an outbound link, types in a new website address, clicks the back button, closes the internet browser when viewing a page, or times out when the browser is left open on a specific page for more than 30 minutes.

How Can You View Your Bounce Rate Statistics?

Bounce rates statistics can be viewed through any number of free website analytic programs.  Website analytic programs require that you place a small script within each page of your website to track your website usage.  Once there is some statistical data, you can begin to view your bounce rates.

Why Are Bounce Rates Important?

Bounce rate statistics are important in determining the effectiveness of an entry page.  Entry pages of your website are designed to entice the viewer to look at more information or to convert a customer through a website form.  If the bounce rate of an entry page is abnormally high, it is important to evaluate what is causing the problem and take steps to correcting the problem.

Four Tips to Decrease Bounce Rates

  • Refine Page Titles and Page Descriptions: Make sure that your Page Title and Page Description accurately describe the web page.  Potential customers make click through decisions within search engine results through page titles and page descriptions.  If your Page Title or Page Description does not accurately depict the website page, the website viewer will leave.
  • Evaluate Your Website’s Navigation: Your website navigation needs to clearly direct website viewers to the pages that you want them to view. Website navigation needs to be a prominent element within the website design.  Utilize website analytics to determine if your website viewer is following the navigation that you have intended.
  • Limit the Number of Outbound Links: Outbound links dramatically increase bounce rates.  Website viewers have a short attention span, if you point your website viewer to another site; it is very likely that they will not return to continue the navigation that you have intended for them.  While it is ok to place outbound links on resource pages that you have developed for your customer, do not place outbound links within landing pages.
  • Experiment with Different Variations: By testing different versions of your site content, you can determine what will best attract users and lead them to convert on your site.  Clearly define your goal and what action you want the website viewer to take.

If you would like to learn more about how to decrease your website’s bounce rates, please contact us!

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