High Bounce Rate: Reasons and Fixes
Does your website show a high bounce rate?
Bounce rate is calculated by the total number of people that visit your website but only view a single page session without taking any action.
It negatively impacts your website and can decrease your ranking. This article identifies the reasons behind a high bounce rate and how you can improve it.
What Is A Good Bounce Rate?
A bounce rate means people going back or bouncing back to the Search Engine Page Results after just checking a single page on your site.
Even if the visitor stays on a single page for an hour but leaves without taking any action.
This shouldn’t be good right? However, there are ways where it can be both good or both.
Usually, websites have a bounce rate between 26 to 70 percent.A lower percentage isn’t great either as it signals that something might be broken or not working correctly.
Anywhere around 26 to 40 percent is an excellent rate while 41 to 55 percent is average.
56 above is not fine and higher than a normal percentage, however, it depends on what kind of website you have.
Though anything above 70 percent is bad and your website clearly lacks something or has a problem that is resulting in this higher bounce rate.
It usually indicates that something is broken but there can be other causes too.
Though, not all, of this is bad.
For instance, a visitor may come to your website to look for your email, phone number or company address.
So when they will find your contact information in the footer, they will probably leave as soon as they note it.
However, if they send you an email, give you a call or visit you during your business hours then it is still a conversion.
Therefore, it isn’t bad but good.
What’s bad is people leaving without any conversion.
Hence, you need to figure out why they are leaving without converting.
You can use Microsoft Clarity to see their recordings and where they have gone onto your website.
Furthermore, you can check the total bounce rate on your site using Google Analytics.
It will also tell you about the visitors to your site, the time spent on it and the average number of pages they visit.
Using these you can identify where the problem lies.
It can stem from several issues with the site design, code or content. More on that below!
Do not confuse it with the exit rate.
Exit rate only refers to the visitors in the last session and could lead to a conversion rate while visitors do not lead to conversion in bounce rate.
Reasons Behind High Bounce Rate
Are you providing a bad User Experience to your visitors?
Do you think your content is not that informative?
Is your site speed extremely low?
All these and other factors relating to your website may make your visitor leave immediately.
Getting Technical Errors
An extremely high percentage signals that your page is returning a 404 error or is a blank page.
Obviously, if someone receives an error, they are bound to return immediately.
You can look into the issue by visiting the page by using the popular web browser your visitors use.
Or use Google Search Console’s Coverage tab to find this issue according to Google.
Not fixing this issue will lead to Google removing your website from their search results.
Low Site Speed
If your page loads slowly then that is a big turnoff for the visitor.
Did you know that your website’s speed is a factor for Google ranking?
In fact, it is part of Google’s algorithm.
Users want to quickly access what they want.
This is why there are Google’s featured snippets are so popular.
It pays attention to whether your site is providing a positive experience to its visitors.
By all means, a slow to load speed will annoy your visitors and will not result in a positive experience.
You can carry out a website speed test to identify if your site takes too long to load.
Unpleasant Experience Due to Bad UX
If the first thing your visitor sees is an ad, survey or email pop-up, then this may annoy them.
These are CTA and don’t get me a Call to Action is important.
However, giving that before letting them reach what they want to see is a bad idea.
Moreover, User Experience matters in ranking.
If the UX design of your website and that particular webpage is poor, then visitors may leave immediately.
Also, note if your design is confusing.
Is it hard to find the search panel and categories?
Or does any of the buttons don’t click properly?
Is there too much content that is hard to read?
All these things may not matter to you as much but they do to your visitors.
Therefore, if you want to give a good User Experience, avoid these mistakes by all means.
Your Website Is Not Mobile Friendly
Do you know that still, one-fourth of the world’s top websites are not mobile friendly?
When sites are not mobile-friendly they do not show crucial information.
For example, your visitor may see a huge header and menu bar but will not be able to see what they wanted to see directly.
This can confuse them and they can immediately press the back button.
So you should make a responsive web design but also check if that goes well on mobile phones.
If you cannot point out any other issue on your website, check how it plays on mobile.
The Quality is Low and The Content isn’t SEO Optimized
Get people to review your content.
If they don’t like it, there’s a chance your site content looks bad to your visitors too.
Maybe it isn’t as informative as they would like it to be.
Or it is also possible that your content is optimized for reading.
Are you using SEO techniques and including several header tags?
Furthermore, check if you are using SEO hacks of writing captions and giving alt tags to images.
You should also use simple language that the regular internet user understands.
Low-quality content will not be able to survive among 2 billion websites in the world.
Your Title Tag and Meta Description Does Not Match The Content
If it is misleading then people will not find the content they want.
As a result, they will go back immediately.
You can easily fix this by changing your title tags and meta descriptions that better fit your article.
Or make changes to your content so that your visitors get what they want.
If you do not have an SEO plugin like Yoast then Google sets your meta description automatically.
Sometimes it may be unfit so you can fix it by installing an SEO plugin.
When High Bounce Rate is Not Bad
Suppose you have a survey on the landing page, if the visitor fills it and leaves, it isn’t bad at all.
Furthermore, if the content on the page is sufficient for the user then that’s a good sign too.
If your user stays for a few minutes then that is a good sign for ranking.
Though, if it is less than a minute in the case of filling a survey, then you can tell visitors to visit your other content on the website.
Getting A Bad Backlink
This isn’t related to your content but if your website has the right speed, UX and content then you should give your backlinks a look.
Maybe certain websites are linking you for content that is not related to your site.
It can happen by mistake or could be intentional.
Though, it is certainly misleading for the visitors.
They expect to learn about “How to Monetize their Blog” instead they are directed to “Captivating Instagram Caption”.
You can simply ask the author of the blog to remove your link or disavow it in Google Search Console.
By disavowing, Google will no longer consider that link as a ranking factor regarding relevance and quality.
Now that you know about the reasons behind the high bounce rate, let’s discuss how you can correct it.
How to Fix It?
You will need to fix with content, designs and website speed.
First, do not write thin content.
You should write high-quality content that is SEO-optimized.
Furthermore, check if it has the right meta description and title tag.
Use an SEO plugin so that Google does not select a meta description automatically.
Moreover, give what you show to offer.
If your article is long enough then it’s a guide, not a 300 words blog post.
Additionally, use shorter sentences, easy language and use white space plus pictures.
Regarding design, do not bombard with email subscription pop-ups and ads as soon as someone visits your page.
Only a CTA should be visible immediately. Everything else can go to the footer or sidebar.
Furthermore, make your design mobile-friendly.
Provide the visitor what they want immediately.
Your H1 should be the first thing they see which is similar to the title tag that made them click your website in the first place.
If your site load slowly, then you can compress images and reduce their size.
Eliminate any extra plugins and load heavy scripts.
This way you can fix the causes of the high bounce rate.
As a result, your site will start ranking higher.
Therefore, find out the reasons and implement these fixes soon so that you get more visitors and conversions.