High Bounce Rate? Here are the Reasons & What You Should Do

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Just like a bouncing ball, the more it bounces the lesser the bounce it gets. The same with your web page bounce rate. The higher your bounce rate gets the worse your situation will be.

To test Google Analytics is working on to show you bounce rate, you may want to sign in to your Google Analytics account and select the website for which you’d like to see the bounce rate. To view the bounce rate of the entire site, click on the metric Bounce Rate. You can also get the service of an SEO Agency for this if you want to improve your bounce rate and rank high in any search engines.

What Is Bounce Rate?

Bounce rate is single-page sessions divided by all sessions, with the visitor leaving the same page without viewing a second page. For example, let’s say someone lands on Page A from your site. And they hit their browser’s back button a few seconds later. That single-page session is a bounce. Fortunately, creating a high-converting landing page is now easier than ever.

As far as analytics are concerned, bounce rates are highly subjective. It’s worth remembering that bounce rates from product pages can be a little higher than some other types of pages and that this can vary further depending on the nature of the product or service in question. Also, your site’s traffic sources can dramatically impact your site’s Bounce Rates, especially, the low-quality traffic ones.

So a bounce rate as a single page visit will tell you how many visitors bounced compared to all the visitors that came to your site.

What’s The “Average” Bounce Rate?

Before we talk about the “Average” bounce rate, let’s talk first about the low and high bounce rates.

A higher bounce rate indicates fewer visitors are clicking on links on your site, whereas a lower bounce rate indicates more visitors are clicking to other pages. You can calculate the bounce rate for one page on your site, a section of pages, or all of the pages on your site.

The average bounce rate is good. They are synonymous with each other. As a rule of thumb, a bounce rate in the range of 26 to 40 percent is excellent. 41 to 55 percent is roughly average. 56 to 70 percent is higher than a good bounce rate, but may not be cause for alarm depending on the website. Anything over 70 percent is disappointing for everything outside of blogs, news, events, etc.

But an average bounce rate for an eCommerce site might hover between 20-45%, while a landing page might be as much as 90%. Make sure that you’re comparing your site to other sites in your category.

With bounce rate information that Google Analytics provides, you can analyze the quality of user visits. In our example, the referral traffic has the lowest bounce rate of 22.09% which means visitors coming from this channel are responding well to our content. All Traffic report allows you to compare bounce rates for each source.

All pages report gives you details on bounce rates for individual pages. As an example, The Click-Through Rate is the percentage of people who click on your website title on the SERP compared to the Impressions. If your bounce rate is low, your open rate is low, but your click rate is high, and vise versa.

Why Do People Bounce?

Before we get into the specific steps to reduce your Bounce Rate, it’s important to understand the most common reasons that people bounce and lose user engagement.

When a user (e.g., customer, prospect, or reader) visits your site on any page known as an entrance page and leaves without visiting other pages on the same domain, that’s a bounce. These are reasons people are bouncing from your website to website and to improve them is a daunting task to many. To avoid single-page visits you must know the reasons why.

Here are some reasons why people bounce:

  1. It takes forever to load.
  2. Your Pop-Up game is too strong.
  3. Your Navigation is Confusing.
  4. Your Design is Straining Eyeballs.
  5. You’re Not Showcasing Enough.

Improve Your Content’s Readability

One of the best things you can do for readability is to use an analyzer. Check your readability score before publishing a blog post or any text. This is an easy-to-read format to take and makes a big impact. The common element of these tools is a focus on short sentences and simple words in writing in-depth content.

That’s what every site owner has to work towards is gradually increasing the time, not only the readability, that users spend reading this site content.

Here are Readability Tips You Can Put Into Practice Now:

There are a few tried and true tips to keep in mind that can help combat high bounce rates in these negative situations and improve readability.

Shorten your sentences

You can make significant improvements by shortening the longest sentences. If you have a long sentence, try to create two. A helpful rule is: “One idea, one sentence.”

Shorten your words

With a little thought, you will normally be able to exchange a long word for a short word or words. Shorten your words. Words like ‘proximity’ become ‘near’. ‘Furthermore’ may become ‘also’.

Use fewer syllables

Use one- and two-syllable words when you can. Avoid using longer words unless they are widely used and familiar.

Keep your paragraphs short

Trying to force too many words and too much information into one place will backfire. Stop and take a breath with a well-placed line break. You can also use subheaders and images to split up the text.

Avoid stiffness

To keep your content loose and natural-sounding, write as if you were speaking. Make your text more conversational than formal.

Speak the language of your readers

You need to keep your word choice easy to understand. Stay away from techno-babble. Anyone who wants to read your content should be able to do so. Know your target audience, therefore, and write for them.

Good text design

The design of your text can improve readability, too. The font makes a huge difference. Choose a headline font that contrasts with the body font. Make sure your fonts are large enough to read.

For example, we used a custom design for our guide to email marketing. And when you compare this page to a normal blog post or article, this design really stands out.

Pay Attention to Page Load Time

In its simplest terms, page load time is the average amount of time it takes for a page to show up on your screen. It’s calculated from initiation when you click on a page link or type in a web address to completion and when the page is fully loaded in the browser.

This parameter is also called “page speed” (speed of the page load). A fast-loading site also scores high on search rankings. Optimize your site speed even if you have a low bounce rate, a fast website can never hurt you.

According to Google, “Two seconds is the threshold for e-commerce website acceptability. At Google, we aim for under a half-second.” Fast matters, especially when it comes to customer service. Your site’s loading speed is more important than ever; users expect a page to load in 2 seconds or less. Otherwise, they’ll bounce and go to your competitor’s site.

You can also always hire a WordPress developer to assist you in making your site responsive.

Easy Navigation

If your visitors can’t navigate clearly and effectively around your website, they’re leaving. Nothing is more frustrating when you’re on a website totally liking what you’re reading and you go to click on another page, but you don’t even know where to click, or what to do, or where to look, or how to breathe because you’re so confused.

How To Improve Your Website Navigation:

1. Keep it consistent

Consistent navigation promotes ease of use and increases your visitors’ ability to find relevant information more quickly. If your navigation is constantly changing from page to page (except where necessary), visitors lose their on-site bearings and must reorient themselves constantly.

2. Divide categories clearly

If your navigation contains multiple sections, categories, or sub-categories, these categories must be clearly and visually defined. In other words, category headings must be separated visually from the sub-categories, even if the categories are links themselves.

Navigation menus on your site and CTAs are critical parts of bounce rate optimization. Menus will help users understand the structure of your site and where they are within that structure.

3. Make all navigation elements clickable links

When using multiple categorical divisions in your navigation, all heading elements should be clickable links. This is true even with drop-down menus where clicking a sub-category link may be the natural inclination of the visitor.

Set external links open in a new tab. If you’re using a WordPress plugin, there’s a plugin that will automatically open external links in a new tab. Many people advocate for including dozens of internal links in your content as a way to reduce your bounce rate, or you can install a free plugin like WP External Links.

However, don’t go overboard with the internal links. Resist the temptation to internally link to every article in your archive. This can confuse and overwhelm your visitors, and can also dissuade visitors from clicking the link internally connected in the first place, as well as broken links.

A large number of broken links will only create a poor user experience, leaving a visitor to a website dissatisfied and frustrated if they cannot locate the content that they want to find.

4. Use accurate navigation titles

Visitors should have a general idea of what they should find on a page even before clicking any navigational link. This is true whether it’s the main navigation link or an internal text link. Use accurate text to describe the linked page so visitors know what they’re going to get.

Cryptic or misleading navigation text confuses and annoys visitors, possibly to the point of site abandonment. Make sure all link verbiage, whether textual or in an image, accurately portrays the corresponding pages.

If you decide to go after a keyword and end up ranking for it, make sure the content of the page you serve is highly relevant to that query. Consider user intent when targeting keywords.

5. Ensure every clickable image has ALT text

This is true of every image, but even more important for images that link to other pages. Be sure to include the ALT attribute with descriptive text. This ensures that everybody knows what the link is, regardless of how they are viewing your site.

6. Ensure your search feature works

When using an in-site search feature, the search results page must always produce relevant results. It must compensate for misspellings, show related items and even produce results for products you don’t have while displaying similar products you offer. Never produce a search result as “no products found”.

At the very least offer a search box so users can look for other content on your site. Fix it at the top of the page so that visitors who scroll down the page never lose sight of it. Finally, target keywords where the user intent is not limited by the high-value keywords themselves.

Since a meta description is basically targeted at search users, make sure that the keyword they’re searching for is present in your description, but many websites still neglect to add a site search functionality.

Keep Mobile Top-of-Mind

First and foremost keep your mobile device the greatest concern or priority. Mobile users have even less patience than desktop users.

A website should have a responsive design to provide users on mobile devices with a solid user experience. It’s no longer enough to focus only on how your desktop site loads, but it certainly is an appropriate thing to make sure to test on both mobile and desktop.

If you see a high bounce rate on certain devices, that can be a clear indicator of poor user experience on that device.

In today’s landscape, smartphones dominate how people spend their media time. So, it’s important to keep mobile top-of-mind:

  • As of August 2017, there are over 3.5 billion unique mobile internet users.
  • Users spend on average 69% of their media time on smartphones.
  • Mobile devices will drive 80% of global internet usage.
  • 50% of the time individuals spend on digital media is on mobile apps.

Even Google’s in on the mobile search craze with its mobile-first indexing initiative. If you haven’t taken the time to optimize your pages for mobile, there’s a very good chance that’s contributing largely to your high percentage for this metric.

You should strongly consider making your site mobile-friendly, regardless of the time, effort, and expense involved, or the ulcers or sleepless nights you incur in the process.

Remember Readability

Content on a webpage should be clearly and effectively formatted. This is crucial from a user experience standpoint, as no visitor to a website wants to see large chunks of disorganized text. When this happens, users will usually skip over crucial content.

However, if that content was formatted into smaller blocks, including bullet points or also image or video content, a user will have a much easier time digesting that content and be more prone to read it in general. For example, a convincing call to action can convey the right message if done properly.


Nowadays many bloggers are getting high bounce rates on their blogs which is really a headache for them. Your site-wide bounce rate greatly affects your conversion and significantly decreases your revenue. To put your mind at ease, most of the best blogs in the world have a bounce rate of over 80%.

In other words, a user clicks a link and finds exactly what they’re looking for, has a positive user experience on your website, and still be counted as a bounce. When you understand what truly constitutes a ‘bounce’, it’s clear that a high bounce rate is not necessarily a bad thing but perfectly normal.

However, an unusually high bounce rate is also a signal of poor user experience, so it’s worth decreasing it to a point where you’re sure that your users are ‘good bounces’, not bad ones. For websites that rely on users viewing multiple pages or interacting with signup forms and other elements, a high bounce rate is bad.

If the page you’re serving isn’t directly relevant to a user’s query, you can almost guarantee that they’re going to bounce. Relevance such as making relevant content is the name of the game in Conversion Rate Optimization. For this reason, you must optimize for relevance above all other considerations. With a low bounce and high conversion rate, you’ll have on your hands one successful website.

Most people turn to Google Analytics for solutions. Google Analytics will give you each page’s bounce rate, which represents all one-page views.


1. What causes a high bounce rate?

If your site rambles, contains too many irrelevant images or contains other content elements that add more clutter than value, your bounce rate will likely rise because people aren’t sure what you want them to do next.

2. How do I reduce the bounce rate for my WordPress website?

One of the best ways to learn how to reduce it if you’re using WordPress plugins as your content management system (CMS) is to install a “related articles” plugin. You’ve probably seen that kind of plugin in action more than once on websites you’ve visited. Usually, “related articles” links appear at the bottom of the content. But, they can also appear in the sidebar and within the content itself.

Keep in mind that your WordPress theme might already include a “related articles” feature. If that’s the case, then all you need to do is activate it. If not, feel free to browse through the many related articles plugins and find the one that works best for your site.

3. How do I identify signs of a bounce?

Some signs of a bounce include:

  • Visitors click the browser back button
  • Visitors enter a new URL in the address bar
  • Visitors close the tab/window browser
  • Visitors stay inactive for a duration exceeding 30 minutes or until session times out
  • Visitors click an outbound link

4. Does a high bounce rate hurt SEO?

The key takeaway is this: while bounce rate doesn’t directly affect your page ranking, its bounce rate is still something you should understand and be able to improve upon. High bounce rates (when calculated correctly) are often symptoms of deeper problems like user experience issues or poor targeting.

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