SEO Advice: Don’t Overlook Bounce Rate

By Chad D. Lerch | Owner, Digi Marketing Pros
July 7, 2015

Google Analytics is a wonderland of exciting data that gives you insights into the health of your website and the wealth it’s likely to bring you. It’s important to focus on metrics like month-to-month sales growth, traffic, newsletter signup conversion rates, new versus returning visitors, and referral sources just to name a few.

But don’t overlook bounce rate — it’s one of the relevance indicators for Google, Yahoo, and Bing. The major search engines maintain their popularity by recommending websites that match users’ search terms and meet their expectations.

Google considers it a red flag when users land on your website and promptly leave without clicking further into it. Even worse in Google’s eyes, is when a user follows its recommendation to visit your site, and the visitor quickly clicks the back arrow to refine his or her search. If this happens often, you won’t like the outcome: your site ranking (and your chance to reach new customers) will sink like the Titanic.

Likewise, if people visit your site and leave right away, that should be a signal to you, the website owner, that your content stinks.

The higher the bounce rate percentage, the worse you’re doing with Search Engine Optimization — things like meta tags, meta descriptions, headline tags, and a myriad of behind-the-scenes tech stuff. Hire a consultant to fix those problems, they’re mega important to impressing Google, Yahoo, and Bing.

But don’t overlook the importance of improving the content on your website: the words potential customers read, the pictures they view, the videos they watch, and the way these marketing elements compliment each other.

Let’s face it. We’re not going to impress everyone. No one will maintain a 0.0% bounce rate. But if you’re above 35%, it’s time to fix the problem before it gets out of hand.

Consider these resources:

  • Subscribe to SEO podcasts and listen on your way to work. You’ll pick up excellent advice.
  • Hire an internet marketing consultant. Contact us or your local chamber of commerce for references.
  • Attend a Google Analytics seminar. Your local chamber of commerce may sponsor such events featuring local experts.
  • Read internet marketing blogs like Search Engine Watch or Search Engine Journal.
  • Most importantly, visit your website with a critical eye, as if you were a customer, and ask yourself: would I stay to learn more, or go somewhere else?

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