Today, we will be learning about bounce rate and how to reduce bounce rate in WordPress site/blog. When starting out, most bloggers and site owners believe that it is very hard to get people to website.
While that is true, getting the users to stay on site is much more harder. Most visitors to your site end up leaving without even going to the second page. When a user leaves without even going to the second page, it increases your bounce rate. It also decreases your page views per visit. On a bigger picture, it decreases your revenue.
If you’re average bounce rate, for example, is 75%, that means 75% of the people who come to your website leave after only viewing the page they entered on, whether it was your homepage or an internal page.
People are coming to your site and either finding what they want but not anything else or not finding what they want at all. The key is to make sure that once visitors land on a page, they are drawn to visiting even more pages throughout your site. Maintaining a low bounce rate is hard but not impossible.
Does Bounce Rate Matter?
If you are running a site that is primarily monetized by banner ads, then the number of page views matter. If you are trying to build a loyal audience, then the number of bounce rate matters.
The lower your bounce rate, the better ads eCPM (cost per thousand) or CPC (cost per click) you will get. When the same user views the next page, your ad provider most likely has a better ad to serve them thus giving you a higher eCPM or CPC.
Most importantly bounce rate matters from SEO aspect. Google loves and will give priority in search results for sites with lover bounce rate. Why? Because from Google aspects high bounce rate means site content, design, value is not relevant to searched topic or even low quality.
It all depends on goals of your site and purpose. I have seen many websites which goal is not to have visitors browse endlessly through a maze of content, but instead to take a call to action.
Calls to action that could lead a visitor off your website include:
- Calling your number to speak and inquire about products or services
- Leading customers to product sales on another domain or network
- Clicking on ad banners that pay-per-click or lead to affiliate product marketing sites
Essentially, if you have goals that only require people to visit one page on your website, then you may not have to worry about bounce rate.
What Is Bounce Rate For A Blog?
Bounce rate is the best way to analyze your blog’s visitor’s activity. There are visitors who bounce soon after landing on your blog post and it’s up to you how you welcome visitors and attract to other blog’s pages.
How do you calculate bounce rate?
Bounce Rate = View/Entry
- Entry: Total people landed on page
- View: People viewed one page only
If page received 1.000 visits and 700 visitors left site after viewing page, bounce rate for that page would be : Bounce Rate = 700/1000 = 0.7 or 70%
Luckily thanks to Google Analytics and various WordPress statistics plugins, like SlimStat, you don’t have to calculate anything. All data is provided to you. You can see which pages/posts have lowest bounce rate and which highest along other useful data.
How To Reduce Bounce Rate In WordPress?
If you are using Google analytics, you can quickly login to your site dashboard and check bounce rate for particular time frame. Usual blogs have high bounce rate. From 70 – 80% so don’t despair if your WordPress blog has high bounce rate.
Here are some common tips to reduce bounce rate on any site, not just WordPress.
1. Design and load time
Like in real life, first impression is most important. When a visitor lands on your website, the first thing he will notice is your blog’s loading time and design of your blog.
2. External site opens in new tab
It’s a good idea to make all external website links to open in new tab instead in current. You want to keep visitors on site. When you are linking to any site (Wiki, YouTube, Amazon or any other), select the option which says open in new tab. You can also charge plugin to do it for you.
3. Easy to read articles
Make content in posts clear and easy to read. Try to give it a style by adding headings (H2, H3, H4). Make sentences shorter, grammatically correct and understandable.
4. Related posts
Showing related posts is very important. Once a reader is done reading the article, show him more similar topics. There are many WordPress Plugins which make possible to add related posts if your WordPress theme doesn’t have that feature built-in.
5. Easy navigation
Your blog should be easy to navigate from one page to another. Visitor should always know where they are located and what they are looking for.
6. Search box and relevant links
It’s always recommended to have a search box which is easily visible. Visitors sometime prefer to search for articles about topic they are interested in.
If you want to reduce bounce rate make sure that you link only relevant articles with each other. Irrelevant articles might irritate visitors and make them leave site.
7. Internal linking
This is important factor from SEO aspect as well as in reducing bounce rate. Try to interlink blog post as much as you could. Wikipedia interlink SEO strategies and example can be your guiding point.
Interlinking also helps in boosting search engine ranking if done with proper anchor text technique.
8. Keep pop-ups to a minimum
Pop-ups come with a proven track record of improving subscriptions. But if you over do it, they can be big turn off for site visitors.
9. Splitting up long posts
You can split long articles/posts into multiple pages using the WordPress <!–nextpage–> tag in post. Simply add it wherever you want and your post will be split into multiple pages.
You have to be very careful when doing this. If you do not have a sufficient amount of content on each page, then the user might get pissed of.
Reduce Bounce Rate WordPress Plugin
One of the biggest reason for high bounce rate is due to visitors hitting the back button. If you have a blog/site where you get traffic from search engine or Facebook, chances are that people would read the article and simply hit the back button or exit button.
What if you could redirect these users to page of your choice when they hit the back button or exit button? No annoying pop-up and no annoying message. Simply get redirected to any page of your choice.
This is what Zero bounce rate plugin does. This plugin is easy to configure and you can quickly install, activate and put into work. That is lite version of plugin. In Zero Bounce PRO you get many more features.
Once you have purchased, installed and activated the plugin, you can access the setting from settings > Zero bounce and start configuring the settings.
The very first thing which you would do is choose the link on which you want your visitors to be redirected after hitting the back or close button:
- You can use single URL or multiple URL which will be rotated automatically. This way you can also do an A/B testing and find the URL that works the best for you.
- You can activate this feature based on referrals. For example, activate the plugin feature only for search engine traffic or traffic from Facebook or traffic of your choice.
- You can deactivate the plugin for readers who have spent X amount of seconds on your blog.
- You can select if you want your desktop or mobile or both traffic to be redirected.
You also have an option to configure it for individual posts from the post editor. You can use it for those posts which are getting high traffic but have really high-bounce rate.
You can configure it to redirect them to another similar post or may be to a product page which converts and increase your sales. You can redirect visitors who are about to hit the back button or exit button to your landing pages.
These landing pages could be your free eBook page, resource page or anything which converts most for you.
Of course, you can always redirect to affiliate products, offers or any other external site. Also you have an option to exclude certain part of your blog like “Home-page” “Posts” or “Pages.”
You can even redirect users to specific page based on their geo-location. This is useful for niche site, where you want users to land on specific geo-targeted pages in order to increase the conversions.
Another feature in Zero Bounce is the ability to redirect if your visitors wants to close the window or browser.
Personally I think that’s a little too forceful for a personal blog, but if you’re using this plugin on a sales page or niche site, then this feature might prove to be a useful one. The final option on this page is whether you want to redirect a visitor only once.
If you are an into affiliate business, I’m sure you must have figured out the smart use of this plugin. In case if you haven’t, you can use this plugin to redirect users to one of the affiliate products you are promoting.
Zero Bounce WordPress Plugin Summary
Even if you can’t keep visitors on your website, you can do your best to ensure they will return by giving them links accessible throughout website, to social media profiles, newsletter…
If they leave your website but become a fan of your Facebook page or start following on Twitter, you will still have a chance of bringing them back vs if they leave and have no way to connect with you otherwise. Consider applying above mentioned tips.
DISCLOSURE: Posts may contain affiliate links. If you buy something through one of those links, I might get a small commission, without any extra cost to you. Read more about it here.