What Will Google Analytics "Bounce Rate" Tell You About Your Site?





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Published on Jul 30, 2010


According to Google, a Bounce Rate is: "Bounce rate is the percentage of single-page visits or visits in which the person left your site from the entrance (landing) page. Use this metric to measure visit quality - a high bounce rate generally indicates that site entrance pages aren't relevant to your visitors. The more compelling your landing pages, the more visitors will stay on your site and convert. "

Avinash Kaushik has a much better definition, "I came, I puked, I left."

Shortest Answer = What pages suck!

Let's go through a scenario.

Your customers find you on a search engine using specific keywords. Your website comes up and they click on the link. They enter your website, don't find what they are looking for, your site scares the heck out of them, and BHAM - they click on the back button.

Here is your problem: 1. You just lost a visitor that you worked hard for. 2. Your bounce rate just went up. 3. If this problem continues, Google will begin to think that your page is not relevant and remove your website from showing up for that keyword phrase.

Why will Google remove my website?

Google wants to make sure that their customers get the most relevant results. If their customer is searching for fuzzy socks, then Google wants to make sure the customer sees websites having to do with fuzzy socks.

There are websites out there trying to trick Google into believing that their website is all about fuzzy socks. Why? Because so many people are searching for the keyword phrase fuzzy socks! So they have learned to trick Google into thinking that they have a page all about fuzzy socks.

However, when you arrive on that page... it's just a bunch of *#$%. The page has nothing to do with fuzzy socks. If you were looking for fuzzy socks, you would immediately leave the website.

Let's say that out of every 100 people searching for fuzzy socks, 99 of them immediately backed out of the website. Google doesn't have to see the website personally to know that something is seriously wrong.

Why should they rank that website number 1 when the 2nd website listed is so much better? Google can see that 40 out of the 100 visitors come in, click on some of the links, some of those click on an add to cart button, some of those complete the checkout process, and convert into a customer. They are very happy with this website. Good job Google! You gave them what they wanted :)

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