Bounce rate in simple terms is defined as how many visitors visit your website and how many of those immediately exit without reading a page. Ah! That hurts! You spent countless nights on designing, developing and adding content in your blog and now the visitors aren’t interested in coming to it. Why?
Think of your blog as a shop where customers come and if they don’t buy anything, it means there is something seriously wrong going on.
Due to immense competition in every niche, it has become very difficult in maintaining low bounce rate. With that being said, there are websites having less than 10% bounce rate, such as Mashable, RedmondPie, JeffBullas, TechCrunch, and many more.
What is an ideal bounce rate?
Your bounce rate should be less than 50% to be ideal. The lower it is, the better. The higher it is, the worse your website is! Here are solid tips on lowering your bounce rate of website:
1. Frequent upgradation of quality content
Every time, something new is happening in your niche. The moment something happens and it catches your attention, ask yourself:
Wait! How about if I share this idea/news/suggestion with my readers?
Nothing is more important than quality content. Your visitors would stop coming if your site isn’t getting updated regularly. If you don’t find anything compelling and new everytime you visit authority sites, wouldn’t you stop browsing them? That is how a reader’s mind works! Give them something new everytime they come to your blog so that they have good reasons of not leaving you!
Have around 8 to 10 blog posts with good images on your front page. Install plugins and get sidebar content having a tag cloud. Give more time to your visitors for engagement.
2. Keep ads to a minimum
I understand that professional bloggers earn through quality content alongside advertisements. It is like lifeblood of their blogs. But with all that said, you need to keep ads to a minimum level in order to avoid any distraction for your visitor. Provide a good experience to your readers and make sure that ads are kept at an arms distance.
3. Optimize page loading speed
Several seo companies provide concrete strategies on improving page load speeds. If your site is taking longer than 10 to 15 seconds to load, believe me, that is too much. Your customers could at any moment shift their attention to other websites in your niche. We demand fast websites these days. Websites like Amazon, eBay, TechCrunch and many others could loose on a good earning opportunity if their page loading speed sucks.
Get help from an seo consultant. Clean up your website from unnecessary codes, plugins and other distractions that count toward long page loading times. If you are using wordpress, I highly suggest you reading my blog post of 18 wordpress plugins for 2013. I have mentioned about a great plugin W3 Total Cache. I also came to know about CDN WordPress plugin, which is very popular for improving page load times.
4. Clear navigation structure
When someone lands on your website, he/she should be greeted with a clear navigational structure so that the visitor feels comfortable in browsing through different pages of your website. There are thousands of websites in every niche and hence it is important to have a structure that is clean, neat, nice and well-optimized.
Make sure to have a menu having links to your blog, and all important pages of your website so that the information is easily accessible from one place.
5. Interlink your pages
If you interlink relevant pages, not only that increases your rankings, but also decreases the bounce rate. Have a look at some of the benefits of internal linking that I posted on my website a couple of weeks ago.
6. Related posts for your pages
At the end of your every article, there should be few, relevant links to related posts for your pages. There are several plugins that can automatically generate links on every page and/or post of your website according to the content. This makes it easier than ever for your visitors to stay on your website or blog. I personally like WordPress Related Posts plugin to get the most out of my related posts.
7. Use clear formatting
In our normal day language, we stress upon the importance of how we pronounce words. For example, we may be putting force on one word whereas be polite on another word at the same time. Similarly your content should be divided into easy, readable, manner to be enjoyed by your visitors.
A good way is to use headings, subheadings, bold, italics, font size, and font color, etc. I wrote a post on how to make your content readable for your website audience. Go ahead and have a sneak peek at this post.
8. Make your website responsive
Do you know that the tech analysts are calling Year 2013, the year of smartphones? Why? Mobile browsing and search has already reached at an unprecedented level ever since the rise of smartphones and internet has been observed. Have you made your website mobile responsive? In Year 2014, mobile search shall surpass desktop search. Now is the right time to make your website mobile responsive. I am using WPTouch plugin to make my website responsive on smartphones.
I need to know what you are doing to reduce your bounce rate?