5 Reasons Your Bounce Rate is High

Monday, 8 February 2016

Now, I want you to be honest, how many of you have logged into Google Analytics and held your head in your hands? *Throws hand in the air* It's so complicated... Don't get me wrong, it is such a useful tool. It tells me nearly everything I need to know about my traffic, but some days it just isn't worth the headache!

Before starting my blog I couldn't begin to tell you what Bounce Rate was, but I've managed to pick up some little tricks along the way. For those of you who don't know, your Bounce Rate is defined as "the percentage of visitors to a particular website who navigate away from the site after viewing only one page."  Whilst I'm still an amateur in the blogging world, I consider myself a bit of an expert in reading other peoples blog posts! I can easily pick out the reasons I will leave your blog, and not come back.

Misleading Headlines
This one is a pet hate of mine... Why would you title your blog post "Thoughts on Charlotte Tilbury's Lip Cheat" if you haven't actually tried the product. The reason I clicked on your post was to read your thoughts, not to see a stock image and you talking about your wishlist. Pleeeeease can we be done with misleading titles? If you want to post your wishlist, that's great! If you want to post a review, brilliant! So long as the 'headline' matches up, I'll be happy! If I'm looking for photography tips but I find a camera review, I'm almost certainly going to leave the page there & then. If I find what I'm looking for I'll be much more likely to view other linked posts on your page! 

The goal of decreasing your bounce rate is to encourage people to explore your blog posts and increase readership. The more pages visited means a longer time spent browsing and more opportunity to win readers over with your witty words & fancy photos, am I right?!

Block Text
If I've come home from a long day at University, or better yet a lazy day spent binge-watching House of Cards, the last thing I want to do is read a whole bunch of words (or at least notice that I am)! Naturally, us bloggers tend to write 300+ words, which is fine provided they are broken up! If I click on your post and find a whole page of block text, then I'm going to click right back off again. Do all of us lazy readers a big favour and break up your text! Bye Bye high bounce rate.

Annoying Adverts
I, mostly, keep my Adblock extension on, so I fall victim to this far less. But there is nothing worse on this planet than pop ups. Am I being melodramatic? YES. Are pop ups seriously irritating? YES. I quite frequently browse blogs on my mobile and this is where I suffer (I promise I'll stop exaggerating now). Pop ups on mobile will take me straight off your site and it is very unlikely I will make the effort to find your page again. Your bounce rate will suffer. This also goes for annoying adverts on your blog itself. There is no need for a little video to play in the corner that takes me 2405 minutes to find, I will just close the tab. Sorry, not sorry. 

Twitter & Mobile Users
This point is something I have been thinking about over the last few days. How often do you see a really interesting blog post on twitter and open it via the mobile app? I do this a few times a day but rarely do I then browse the site further. I go back to twitter, talking to you lovely bloggers and tweeting about tasty food stuffz. It could be funny buzzfeed links, serious news articles or that latest nail polish review. Regardless, it's not often I will stay on that site for more than a page. It's worth looking at the proportion of social media referrals in conjunction with your mobile readership. If most of your readers are from mobile devices & fans of twitter, you will need to find a way to keep them on your page. Internal links are your bounce rate's best friend people!

This is going to sound completely petty of me, but let's face it... looks matter. I'm not afraid to admit that bad blog photography and an awful layout puts me off. I don't know if it's just the perfectionist in me, but there's something about a pre-made theme that makes my head hurt! Unless your content is incredible, I can't stick around. Now, my photography is pretty crappy, Cornwall's not the brightest place in the world. But I work with what I've got, you should do the same. You don't need to spend money on a fancy theme, but pretty please make your page easy on the eyes. A good layout will be the perfect post for all your great content. 

*Breathes* There we go, post over, I'm sure you're all relieved. While I'm on a roll, there are a few other things that you can think about:

  • Check how quick your post loads over on pingdom. No-one likes to be kept waiting, if you find your page is taking a long time, try to fix it!
  • Make sure your blog post is responsive! If I'm on a mobile and I need to scroll and zoom to read your posts, I won't be on there for long. You can check if your site is mobile friendly over on google.
  • Who are you writing for? If you're posting blog tips and sharing them on twitter, but your twitter following comprise mostly of non-bloggers, are they going to want to read more? If you're sharing lifestyle posts on a strictly fashion forum, it may not be well received. Make sure your social shares are relevant and working for you. 
  • Internal links are so helpful. If you have a relevant post on your own blog then link to it! While you're at it, ensure all external links open in a new tab! Big rookie mistake. 

Hopefully this has given you a little insight into my personal reasons for bouncing away from your page, and will allow you to see what is affecting your bounce rate. Please leave any other tips down below and let me know what you think of mine!

8 comments on "5 Reasons Your Bounce Rate is High"
  1. I really enjoyed reading this post and I have just changed my blog so it is mobile friendly now, thanks so much for all your advice:)

    1. No worries! That's great, I'm going to check it out :)


  2. I guess there are many reasons for a high bounce rate, but I feel like the one often overlooked is that one: If your readers are "regulars", they already explored your blog and will just stay to read the newest post. No exploring needed, as they already did that a while back.

    Linda, Libra, Loca: Beauty, Baby and Backpacking

  3. Read this from beginning to end; great tips and calling out what most people tend to overlook! With the little time you have to capture a visitor's interest it's pivotal to do as much as you can to make your blog easy to read AND on the eyes ;)

    xo, Alice || a l i c e / T Y P E N U

    1. Thank you so much Alice! I agree with you there xx

  4. I hate the block text, one huge paragraph is just not what i want to read! Lovely post!
    Emmy | Emmys Beauty Cave | Bloglovin


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