Duo on April 10, 2014
Let me begin by clarifying that not all landing page bounces are bad.
Need a quick refresher on what bounce rates are? Google defines bounce rate to be “the percentage of single-page visits (i.e. visits in which the person left your site from the entrance page without interacting with the page)”. Fear-inducing statistics such as, “98% of landing visitors never return”, and, “60-90% of landing page visitors bounce” must be put into appropriate context.
Accidental clicks, individuals who don’t fit into your buyer personas, and people who are just seeking information are all included in these stats. Some individuals who don’t fit into your consumer profile may happen to come across your website. This is common and their inevitable and swift departure results in a higher bounce rate. That being said, the “bad” bounce rate you should focus on is that pertaining to your buyer personas.
Here are 4 ways you can reduce your website’s high bounce rate:
1. Live up to visitor expectations
2. Improving site design and user experience
3. Providing optimized and valuable content
4. Making your site sharable and engaging
1. Live up to your visitor’s expectations
There is nothing more disappointing to a consumer than when they’re duped by false advertising or click-bait. Landing page titles that indicate something other than the page’s actual content damages your company’s brand equity, which facilitates a sentiment of ill will in the visitor. An example of this might be a search engine link that reads, “Discover how to triple your sales in two months”, but directs the interested visitor to an article about the new year’s design trends or software updates. Make sure that your titles, headers and meta descriptions are all consistent with page subject and copy.
Consumers also don’t appreciate false promises. Links and calls-to-action that promise deals, but don’t actually deliver upon the click, only heighten your bounce rate and further negative consumer sentiment. If you promise a discount, follow through on it; don’t use promotions as a trick to drive traffic to your landing page.
2. Improve your site design and user experience
Design refers not only to a site’s aesthetics, but also to its overall functionality and navigation. Your site shouldn’t resemble a corn maze, nor should finding things on it be like looking for a needle in a haystack. The overall layout should be optimized with a seamless flow: users need to be able to quickly find what they’re looking for with minimal distraction and confusion. Having a website that is organized and appealing to the eye will help to prevent visitors from leaving just out of pure frustration.
Duo’s interaction designers, Chad Johnson and Joyce Pang, make note of a few things that you can do to improve your site:
· Use icons, visuals and short blurbs when possible
· Quick page loading times
· Limited, but prominent content with a clear visual hierarchy (You don't want to overwhelm your users with too much unreadable/cluttered content)
· Proper use of whitespace
· Clean, modern fonts
Overall, Chad recommends “following a user focused design process that allows UX research and information architecture to inform development and visual design”. Your website should be a living entity with room for updates, change and growth. Consult with your design team to address where your site can be improved.
3. Create optimized and valuable content
Be interesting and informative. By providing content that consumers find helpful and relevant, you become a resource to them and inevitably build trust. Your audience will begin to look to you as an industry thought leader, thereby making them more likely to pay attention to what you have to say.
The best way to know what content your viewers will be most interested in is by understanding your buyer personas. To start, look to your site analytics and see which landing pages receive the most traffic. Once you have a strong comprehension of whom you’re speaking to, you will be able to write and share information that will be of value to them, and they will be likely to stay longer on your page.
A successful way to keep visitors engrossed in your site is by utilizing ‘pre-bounce’. Including a call-to-action at the end of an article suggesting that consumers take a look at another relevant post is the best way to do this. Up to 9% of your visitors will take this opportunity rather than exiting your site. Rather than leaving potential leads empty-handed at the end of a post, calls-to-action provide them with the option to continue to engage with your company.
4. Make your site sharable and engaging
Ensuring that your visitor is provided with the best user experience possible is a key factor in not only keeping them on your site, but also in possibly converting them into a lead. While having valuable content is one way to capture your visitor’s interest, engaging them by providing the opportunity to comment and share their own opinions adds an additional dimension of depth. Allowing visitors to interact in this way not only engages them, but it gives you invaluable insight into what your audience is looking for and how they are responding to your content.
Incorporating social share buttons is another way to both engage consumers and receive indirect feedback. Providing these opportunities for visitors to interact with your company on their own terms will hold their interest and help you begin to build your relationship with them.
Making a few, simple changes to your company’s website can truly make a difference in not only your company’s bounce rate, but also in lead acquisition. By doing things such as tweaking site design or modifying your content, potential leads will be more likely to give your company a chance. If visitors find your landing pages appealing, they’ll engage and, better yet, share with their own personal networks.