A bounce rate determines visitors arriving at your site and leaving before they click through to another page. Bounce rates are one of the most common metrics that we use to measure the success of a site and also one of the most misunderstood. We all know that a high bounce rate is bad. Right? Erm, probably not…

The thing is most people look at their overall bounce rate, make a judgement and then look at ways to improve it. Which in theory is a good thing. Though this is somewhat misleading. A true view of bounce rates is via segmentation.

Let’s assume that the bounce rate for your landing page is 41%; this is an average of all the traffic sources to your site. Some people will be arriving from CPC, some from emails, some from organic search and some from various other sources.

If we break this down it could look something like this:

  • Organic – 33%
  • Referral – 49%
  • Direct – 50%
  • CPC – 62%
  • Email campaign 1 – 57%
  • Email campaign 2 – 49%
  • Etc.

Once we’ve segmented our sources (in Google Analytics by “Medium”) we can see that organic search is performing well but CPC adverts are causing a much higher bounce rate, pushing up the average considerably.

This is a much more accurate view of your bounce rates and allows you to make far more informed decisions quickly.

For example from this segmentation we can deduce that our CPC campaigns could be performing better and we should be looking at improving the targeting of the ads by experimenting with making the message a more accurate representation of what people are actually looking for. After all, if potential customers are seeing an ad that makes them click and they’re not getting what they expected, they will bounce.

Of course bounce rates are just one piece of the metric puzzle and should in no way be used in isolation. For example you may find that a visitor has everything they need in the page they land on, they get the info they need and bounce accordingly.

A really interesting stat is to look at the bounce rates after segmenting by device… Try it and see how well you’re doing!

If you’d like to discuss your startup or project, get in touch with Simpleweb today.

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