“All that glitters is not gold”- similarly high bounce rate is not good for your website. In the following post, you will learn about what are bounce rates and how they affect a website’s ranking on Google.

Anyone who runs a website aims to compel the visitors to stay on the page. This is true for those who run an eCommerce website. The process is pretty simple and natural- the longer someone sticks around on the site, the higher chances of making a purchase. Now it is but obvious that not every one of your visitor is going to stay as long as you’d like them to. And in worse come worse situations, some might not stick around at all. This action – called “bouncing” – is the exact opposite of what you want your visitors to do. Which means a higher bounce rate means there is some significant problem with your website, fret not it can be avoided.

The following post emphasizes on some of the main reasons your site may have a higher bounce rate and ways to mitigate the situation if need be. Before we dive in, let’s understand why it is important to assess your bounce rate.

Imagine yourself running a brick-and-mortar store, all of a sudden you decide to watch what your visitors do the moment they walk into your store. To your horror, you find that nine out of ten visitors come in, take a quick glance and walk right back without making any purchase. How does that feel? Disappointing, isn’t it? Clearly, you’d know something is wrong. Same goes for your virtual store. Having a high bounce rate may not tell what’s wrong with your site, but it’s certainly a sign that you need to dig deeper into the problem and fix it ASAP.

What constitutes a “high” bounce rate?

bounce rate

As per the above graph, if your website’s bounce rate falls in the range 25-45%, it means you are walking on the right track. But in case your bounce rate reaches up around 65%, you’re not exactly alone – even if you do have room for improvement. And of course, having a bounce rate above 75% or so is cause for concern.

For example:

  • When a visitor searches for a specific topic and finds an ultimate guide you’ve written on the subject. They read the entire piece, find the exact information they were looking for, and navigate away from your site. But obvious, their purpose was solved.
  • A visitor searches for your company’s contact information and is brought to the page on your website and found your phone number and email address. Again they got what they came for.
  • Other reasons include slow loading time, misleading titles and page summaries, irrelevant referral links, poor site content, poor user interface, etc.

How bounce rates affect a site’s search engine ranking?

Do you think that Google knows bounce rate? Well, many organizations don’t use Google Analytics so there is no way out for Google to track their bounce rate information. In fact, with the help of analytics they can trace, although it’s difficult to determine what they actually mean because every situation is different.

Now there are several factors that go into determining how long a visitor stays on a particular webpage. If a visitor remains on a site for over 20 minutes, they could be so engaged with your site’s content that they can’t even imagine leaving your wonderful webpage… or… it could mean they fell asleep at the screen because your website was so boring. It’s too difficult to tell.

And if you are operating one of those websites with lower bounce rate then some highlights such as making sure each of your pages loads quickly, offers user-friendly navigation, avoids cluttered advertisements, and features quality content! Google recently narrowed down to three top-ranking factor used by Google to drive search results:

  • Links: strong links and link votes play a major role in search rankings.
  • Content: having quality content is more important than ever.
  • RankBrain: Google’s AI ranking system.

Basically, there is no one-size-fits-all answer when it comes to SEO and all its intricacies. The greatest answer to any SEO question is always “it depends.”