Glossary Definition: Bounce Rate

A high bounce rate can indicate that a page is not relevant or useful to your visitors, who leave after viewing just one page. Bounce rate can give you valuable insights into your site's functionality and performance, by showing how well you are meeting the intent of website vistors.

What is bounce rate?

Bounce rate is the percentage of visitors who leave your website after visiting just a single page. More simply: Bounce rate is the percentage of single-page visits to your website. A high bounce rate can indicate that a page is not relevant or useful to your visitors — they land on a page, give it a brief look and decide it is not for them. This gives search engines (and your own analytics) a signal that the site content is ill-fitting.

For example, if a user is looking for a website designed for people moving house and finds an interior design blog instead, the visitor checks the page to see if there is any helpful information, but then quickly decides this isn't a good use of their time. This visit would be classed as a single-page visit because they didn't click through any other pages on your site before leaving; this is called "bounce traffic".

Bounce rate can give you valuable insight into your site's functionality and performance

A high bounce rate can indicate that a page is not relevant or useful to your visitors, who leave after viewing just one page. This means that some of your content is not being consumed by the majority of visitors, which could be due to several factors:

  • The content may not be interesting enough for them

  • It may not be formatted in a way that’s easy to navigate and understand

  • They might find it difficult to find what they are looking for on your site

How to find bounce rate in Google Analytics

The first thing you will need to do is access Google Analytics. If you are not already logged into your account, login with your username and password.

The easiest way to find the bounce rate is just to search 'bounce rate' in the top search bar. This will show the relevant bounce rate statistics site-wide.

To see page level bounce rate, to look for options for optimizing, navigate to Behaviour > Site Content > Landing Pages, and check the bounce rates on the page level.

What is an average bounce rate?

Average bounce rates vary according to industry and niche. As a general rule of thumb, you can expect the following:

  • B2C eCommerce sites have an average bounce rate of 47%.

  • B2B lead generation sites have an average bounce rate of 41%.

  • Non-profit organizations have an average bounce rate of 39%.

What is a good bounce rate?

Generally speaking, a bounce rate between 26 and 40 percent is excellent. 41 to 55 percent is average, while anything above 56 percent represents people leaving without reading anything on your site at all—which isn't good news!

Exit rate vs bounce rate

Exit rate is the percentage of visits that were the last in the session whereas bounce rate is the percentage of visits that were the only one of the session.

Bounce rate is a subset of exit rate; in other words, only visitors who experienced both entry and exit are counted for a site's bounce rate.

How to calculate bounce rate

To calculate your bounce rate, simply divide the number of bounces by the number of visitors. Then multiply that figure by 100 to get your percentage bounce rate.

Here's a quick example: If you have 1,000 unique visitors and 495 of them bounce (meaning they only viewed one page before leaving), then your site has a 50% bounce rate.

How to reduce bounce rate

  • Make sure your pages load quickly. Visitors will leave if they have to wait too long for web pages to appear on their screens.

  • Make your site search function easy to find — and optimized to ensure good results. If visitors have questions about what you offer or how you can help them, make sure it's easy for them to find answers without having to search through your content manually.

  • Provide clear and simple navigation, so your visitors can easily move from page to page.

  • If you want people to linger on your site, it helps to have a great design. If they don't like what they see immediately, they'll probably leave—and never come back.

  • Keep mobile in mind. Mobile usage has been increasing steadily, so all websites should be optimized for devices as well as computers.

Conclusion

Bounce rate is a useful metric to measure the effectiveness of your website. A high bounce rate can indicate that a page is not relevant or useful to your visitors, who leave after viewing just one page. However, there are easy-to-implement changes you can make to help improve how your site (and content) is serving visitors.

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