If, like most businesses you're investing heavily in your website, you may be wondering how you can use the various Google Analytics core metrics to measure your visitor engagement effectively.
The first in our new article series looks at Bounce Rate as one of the key metrics to consider and why.
WHAT DOES GOOGLE ANALYTICS' BOUNCE RATE MEAN?
The simple definition provided by Google:
“The percentage of single-page sessions in which there was no interaction with the page. A bounced session has a duration of 0 seconds.
This doesn't necessarily mean that all sessions with a high bounce rate failed to engage with the page. If a user enters and exits the site from the same page (without triggering any additional Events), Google has no way of tracking the visitor's session duration, resulting in a session duration of zero and therefore a bounce.
However in reality a bounce might actually be triggered by a number of events:
- Returning to search results
- Closing the browser
- Entering a new URL in the address bar
- Following an outbound link
- Staying inactive and timing out the session
- Reading the entirety of a page but not triggering any events, and then leaving
WHAT IS A GOOD BOUNCE RATE?
Whilst this varies depending on the nature of your website, we’ve analysed the results for online retail sites over the last 12 months to shed some light and help you benchmark your Bounce Rate.
BAD BOUNCE RATE
A bad Bounce Rate is generally considered anything over 70%. If this proportion of visitors are entering your website without interacting then you may need to look into the reason. It could be the visitors haven’t found what they’re looking for or didn’t like the look and feel of the page they’ve landed on, or perhaps you have a high proportion of mobile visitors and the site isn't optimised for mobile browsing. There may be a lack of calls-to-action and other opportunities for the visitor to engage. This is the most common issue we find with content and B2B websites - visitors simply are not being funneled towards an end goal.
AVERAGE BOUNCE RATE
Our research found the average Bounce Rate for online shops in 2016 was 48%. At this level, over half of your visitors interacted in some way with your website before leaving.
You should be happy with a Bounce Rate between 40% and 60% and depending on the nature of your website…even as high as 65%.
The average bounce rate for Blogs in 2016 was 59% and News Content websites 64%. - Tweet this stat
GOOD BOUNCE RATE
If you’ve got Google analytics set up correctly and you’re getting Bounce Rates of 25% - 40% then you’re in a very good place. It could be concluded that visitors are finding what they are looking for and are interested enough to interact with your website further. This is also a good indicator that your marketing is correctly targeted towards your ideal customer.
IS BOUNCE RATE IMPORTANT?
Bounce Rate is an important and powerful metric that should be monitored closely. Whether you own an e-commerce site or a content site, you want your visitors to engage, by reading another article, watching a video, downloading a whitepaper, signing up for a free demo or making a purchase.
Most, if not all the businesses we worked with have a goal beyond article consumption. Lower Bounce Rates mean more engaged visitors – a positive step towards your business goals.
Like all metrics Bounce Rate should not be considered as a stand-alone metric to measure user engagement. We’d recommend using it along with other metrics to build a complete picture of user behaviour on your website.
If you’d like to learn more about how we can help you analyse and improve user engagement feel free to contact us.