Guess what? I have stopped paying super close attention to my blog’s bounce rate.
Why? The short answer: because I don’t always see a bounce as a bad thing.
Websites that are primarily blogs tend to have a high high average bounce rate because people come for one specific article.
If you have an eCommerce website or similar, you should be working on lowering your bounce rate. This post is directed to bloggers.
According to hubspot, a realistic bounce rate for the average blog a bounce rate is 70-95%. Parachute designs describes blog’s bounce rates even further:
Due to the nature of blogs and how information is commonly shared across social media streams and back linking, it is more natural for visitors to land on a blog article page and then leave once they have finished reading. In this scenario visitors are far less likely to scan through archives of older articles, which leaves the bounce rate significantly higher than any other common scenario.
Knowing what a typical bounce rate is for your site will help you set realistic goals. No use fretting over something that is actually performing really well.
When someone visits your blog and explores your site, reads a few posts, checks out your about page, that is great! This visitor is not counted as a “bounce”.
Is a “bounce” a bad thing?
Not every visitor is going to behave the same as the example above, but that does not make it an unsuccessful visit. Here are some instances where a “bounce” isn’t necessarily a bad thing. In fact, many of these “bounces” are doing exactly what you want them to do.
- Sarah found your blog through a pin on Pinterest. She read that entire article and loved it. She the pinned it herself and even tweeted about how awesome it was. That is great! But, this visit is counted as a bounce.
- Bob landed on one of your posts recommending one of your favorite products – that product was an affiliate link. He was impressed with your description of the product and left your blog through one of your affiliate links. He ended up making a purchase and you got a kickback for the sale. You made money off of this visit. But, he is still counted as a bounce.
- Madison follows you on Feedly. Almost every time you post a new article, she comes over and reads that blog post. She doesn’t need to go to a different page every time she comes to your site because she’s there three times a week. She’s already looked at the majority of the pages on your blog. But, when she comes to read your new post, she is still counted as a bounce.
- Stephanie found one of your recipe’s on Pinterest while making her weekly meal plan. It looked delicious so she wrote down the ingredients for her shopping list and pinned the article to come back to it later in the week. That visit was a bounce. On Thursday, she opened the Pin and followed your instructions for the recipe. She closed the tab when she was done. This visit was also counted as a bounce. Her family loved the meal and they added it to their list of favorites. Since she like that recipe, she decided to follow you on Pinterest and now tries several of your recipes.
See where I’m going here? A “bounce” isn’t necessarily a bad thing. That is why I don’t pay very much attention to bounce rate. I look at other elements on Google Analytics and other forms of engagement.
Do you have a really high or really low bounce rate?
If you’re a blogger and have a bounce rate that is under 20% or over 95%, there is a good chance your Google Analytics is not installed correctly on your site. Don’t get too excited or too depressed yet.
Those type of numbers are frequently a sign that you have installed the tracking code wrong or you have duplicate analytics codes running on your site. A lot of bloggers have Google Analytics installed more than one time, without realizing they did it. They followed an awesome tutorial like mine on how to install Google Analtyics on a WordPress blog and then a month later they installed a Google Analytics plugin and it automatically added the code to their site. There’s two installations, causing your analytics to report inaccurate statistics.
To check to see if you have it installed more than once, bring open your blog in your favorite browser. Navigate to the developer tools section of the browser and click Page Source (Firefox) or View Source (Chrome).
Search (using control F) for “analytics” and make sure you only have one Google Analytics script showing up!
How to lower your bounce rate
If you do want to lower your bounce rate, you can check out these articles:
- Decrease your website bounce rate – hubspot.com
- How to reduce your blog bounce rate – xomisse.com
- 7 ways to reduce your bounce rate – lifecouldbeadreamblog.com
Seriously though, don’t sweat your blog’s bounce rate. You’re doing a great job blogging, even if you have a high bounce rate.