6 Ways to Minimize Bounce Rate

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Want to keep visitors clicking forward on your website? Follow these 6 simple tips.

  1. Create content that delivers on its promise—Make sure the description in your organic or paid search listings truly matches the content that’s on the landing page being linked to. If you promise your visitors one thing and give them another, you can bet they’ll leave your site quickly.
  2. Don’t reinvent the wheel with your navigation—If you want people to stay on your site longer and click forward, doesn’t it make sense to keep your navigation as simple and easy to understand as possible? Place the navigation where web users have come to expect it (up top, or along the left-hand side) and make sure each section is clearly marked.
  3. Make sure your site loads quickly—Not only does site load time now have an effect on your search engine rankings, but it also determines what new users will do when they come to your website. If your site takes more than a few seconds to fully load, you can be sure you’ll have a lot of people clicking the back arrow to get out.
  4. Use smart internal linking—Links within your content that guide readers forward in a logical path can help you get that second click and lower your bounce rate. Just make sure the links actually serve a good purpose and nudge the visitor a step closer to taking the action you want them to take.
  5. Don’t be intrusive—If you annoy your visitors, they’ll leave. Don’t use autoplay videos or audio. And for the love of all things holy, lose the over-the-top opt-in popups. Whenever I’m “greeted” with one of these intrusive popups, I almost always leave the site immediately.
  6. Segment your sources of traffic—You need to realize that a single bounce rate doesn’t tell the whole story. To get a clearer picture of what’s really going on, you need to analyze bounce rates separately based on where the traffic is coming from. For example, traffic more a social voting site like Digg or ReddIt will likely have a much higher bounce rate than traffic from the search engines. And that’s okay. Just make sure your quality referrers of traffic (search engines, email marketing, etc.) aren’t leading to high bounce rates.

Do you pay attention to your bounce rates? What have you done to reduce them?

Share your best tips by leaving a comment.

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