Tuesday, December 28, 2010

31 Tips To Reduce Your Site’s Bounce Rate

Reduce the Bounce Rate
According to Google, Bounce rate is the percentage of single-page visits or visits in which the person left your site from the entrance (landing) page. In short, it tells how many people who arrive at your website “bounce” out to another site. Keeping your bounce rate to it’s most minimal is important in making the most out of your new visitors.

Many people were confused with bounce rate. It is not rocket science guys! See if a page has bounce rate of 70% means that 70% of the readers/visitors who landed on that page decided to leave your site. The other 30% stayed on your site and performed at least one more click. Below I mentioned 30+ tips to reduce and improve your site’s bounce rate.

If you are trying to optimize your website/blog for conversion rate, then you can check this post,

31 Tips To Improve Your Website Conversion Rate

1. Good Web Layout And Design : You should be careful when choosing between magazine and normal layout theme. Many recommended Thesis theme for better bounce rate. The look of your site’s design can force your visitors to stay.

2. Relevant Content : If your blog is about Animals, then publish articles related to Animals category alone. Don’t write about Fruits and Vegetables. Because visitors will expect more from Animals category. Each page of your blog should be on-topic.

3. Clear and Proper Navigation : Let the users know where they are. Every blog should have breadcrumb. If not download it right now. Have a proper archives section. Place the navigation menu near the top of the page. Use simple and clear words for navigation options. Don’t use too many links there. Maximum of 7 links recommended.

4. Good and Original Content : Always publish original content. Never publish duplicate content which will affect your blog in several ways. Your blog’s content should be worth reading.

5. Avoid Distractions : Avoid pop-ups, external toolbars and anything similar to that which causes distractions to the visitors. You can also avoid using Text In Link ads. Trust me, it decreases page views.

6. Improve loading speed : Don’t make your visitors to wait. Your blog’s page views will automatically increase if the pages load faster and quicker. You can check the tips to improve and increase your blog’s loading speed.

7. Add Relevant Images : Make sure you add relevant and related images to the articles. Provide good resolution and quality images. I made a list of websites providing copyright and royalty free images, you can try that.

8. Avoid External Links : External links on your blog’s main page can make the bounce rate very high. So you can avoid external links on the first page that visitors see when they land on your site. Try to reduce the number of outgoing links.

9. Comparing : Compare the page which gets lower bounce rate with the page that gets higher. Ask your friends and other fellow bloggers the difference between them. This one helps a lot.

10. Analyze Bounce Rate : I recommend Google Analytics for analyzing your site’s bounce rate. Check your site’s bounce rate regularly and see if there is any change. Study the reports. See which page gets the lowest bounce rate and highest bounce rate. You can also check your site’s bounce rate through Alexa. Though, I don’t recommend it much.

11. Ample Content : Try to have minimum 300-400 words of content on your site’s pages. Try to provide sufficient content to your site visitors. Let it be in the form of images, text or videos.

12. Targeted Keywords : Your Keywords should be specifically targeted for the content on your site. Bounce rates are also influenced by wrongly optimized keywords. Consider a post title like this, “Top 15 Twitter Tools for Twitter Freaks“. And you optimize this post title with wrong keywords like “Twitter Hacks” or “Twitter’s New Service”. This makes the users annoy and they won’t visit that page/site later.

13. Minimize Pages : Try to minimize the number of pages you have on your website/blog. Keep it simple and clear, so that your visitors will not get confused.

14. Optimize With Keywords : Always use the keywords within your articles. For example, I have a post titled “7 Basic Tips For Improving Your Blog’s Alexa Rank“, and then I will use the keywords like “Improve Alexa Rank”, “Alexa Rank Tips” and so on. This will indeed increase the value of the keywords on the search engines.

15. Good and Effective Headlines : Each page’s title should match the content within that page. Don’t try to use misleading page titles. You can refer Google’s “Five Tips for Writing Effective Web Headlines“.

16. Offer subscriptions : You can offer RSS feeds and E-mail newsletters by which readers can easily subscribe and get daily updates. This will help in enhancing your site’s bounce rate because those readers will come back to read more.

17. Good Quality Links :Try to acquire as many good links as
Link Building
possible that points to your blog or blog’s page. Those links should have correct anchor text. You can hook other webmasters to link to your pages by placing genuine content in your pages. Avoid link exchange since there is a possibility of losing PageRank on both sides.

18. Remove Autoplay Videos : This is my opinion. I’ll close the site immediately if it starts singing. Remove the video altogether, or at least have it paused.

19. Popular Posts : You can use Popular Posts plugin and list the top and popular articles in your site’s sidebar.


20. Related Posts : There are many ways to show related posts on your blog. My favorite is Yet Another Related Posts Plugin (YARPP). You can try that. Showing related posts with images/thumbnails also works.

21. Internal Linking : By internal linking your readers can know about other content of your site without having to search for it. Interlink only if it is related to the article and you can also do this to your old articles. Try to link between your old articles as reference.

22. Place Search Box : You can provide your visitors with the option to search on your blog at the top. If they cannot find anything interesting on the landing page, they can use search option to navigate into the site.

23. Page SEO : Provide proper URL, title and keyword optimization. For WordPress users, I recommend All In One SEO plugin.

24. Interactive Articles : Ask questions to your readers and visitors. Your article should be in a reader friendly manner.

25. Free Downloads : You can easily attract visitors if you provide free downloads like free themes, free wallpapers and so on. You can make them click on that link easily.

26. Use Post Excerpts : If your article is too long you can use post excerpts. If there is too much content on the main page visitors will get tired by scrolling and they’ll decide to leave.

27. Eliminate Bad Traffic : If you’re getting/buying traffic from other sites and it is not profitable to you, then you need to eliminate all those sources. Check which PPC keywords are bouncing and shut those keywords.

28. Upper Left to Lower Right : Keep the upper left of your site pretty, pretty nice and attractive. Because visitors will first see that only and that decides whether they need to stay or not.

29. Optimize 404 Pages : Many blogs have ugly 404 error page. That makes the bounce rate to bounce more. Your visitors will leave your site and look elsewhere for the information they were looking for. So optimize the error page. Provide some solutions and suggestions there. You can check HB‘s 404 Error page.

30. Optimize The Sidebar : Remove all those useless and time consuming widgets from your site’s sidebar and try to include widgets such as “Popular Posts” and “Recent Articles”. You can also use “tag cloud” in the sidebar.

31. Surveys and Polls : This is the best way to interact with your readers and visitors. You can ask them some questions or suggestions. You can check the results and you can predict whether they will stick around or not.

So what’s your site’s bounce rate? High? Low? Ahh.. ;)

Do you know any other tip to improve/reduce bounce rate? Please share it in the comments!

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Anonymous said...

Great tips to reduce the bounce rate.