Bounce Rate Equals Sucky Content

Last week I wrote about time on site being a key metric to website design usability. Well, today I want to talk about a metric that speaks entirely to your content…bounce rate.

Bounce rate equals not answering this important question…what’s in it for me?

First of all, let’s talk about what bounce rate is. Bounce rate is when someone visits your site and doesn’t click on any other page before leaving. Or simply put, bounce rate tells you the number of people who, well, bounce.

Bounce rate will tell you a few things besides the quality of your content. It will tell you what page on your site drives people to hit the back button. It shows you which pages people prefer and it shows you exactly what the problem is with specific pages you setup to convert.

Understand, bounce rate is typically pretty high, probably over 50%, but if your bounce rate is in the 80-90% range, you may want to do one of two things:

  1. Change the content on the page
  2. Change the content on what drives the reader to that page

Change the content on the page

If your reader searched for decks or clicked an ad or got to your site from a postcard, your content better talk about what they thought it was going to. If not, the reader is as good as gone, equaling a high bounce rate.

Changing the content of your ads or other marketing material

If you hand out flyers, do postcard mailings, drop off brochures with proposals or run ads in the newspaper and drive people to a specific page or home page of your site, it better be what they expect or you will once again be hit with a high bounce rate.

While time on site is a positive metric to measure, bounce rate is a negative metric you want to pay attention to. But make the proper changes to your site and your content, and you can drive your bounce rate percentage below the 50% threshold.