What is “Bounce Rate”

Every blogger’s online statistics tool is Google Analytics, which gives a complete report of how your website is performing and who are your visitors and which part of the world has more audience to your site. It provides graphical as well as arithmetic figures to illustrate in an easy to understand manner. The Dashboard has a Visits graphs, a Site Usage section, Traffic-Content-Visitor overview which are all very well presented for even a start-up blogger to make sense and work towards improving those numbers.

However, there is one topic which was not so straight-forward for me when I first created by Analytics account, and that is ‘Bounce Rate for your Visitors‘. From my not so good background on website programming, all I could think of was maybe it means when your visitors are not able to access your website and the only reason for that could be that my hosting service was down for whatever reason. I didn’t pay much attention at the time as to whether it needed any attention from my end as a blogger.

Later on, after digging a little further into the subject, I realized it meant a lot of other things like how many visitors are “bouncing” off of your home page without navigating to any other page or section of your website. Now this will adversely affect the “Average Time” spent on your site by the visitor since he is not staying back for a while even though you have managed to draw his attention to your site somehow. What maybe the reasons for the bounce?

1. The visitor might have clicked on one of your ads which might have taken him away from your site.

2. The visitor might have closed his browser and ended his session.

3. The visitor might have clicked on one of your external links which might prove to be more informative for his purposes.

4. The visitor might have clicked the “Back” button on his browser.

5. The visitor might have clicked on one of his several bookmarks or even used the search option on his browser to navigate to a different site.

6. The visitor could have typed in a different URL and “bounced” away from your website.

All these could potentially make your lose him as a visitor and if he has done any of these before opening another page it would account for the “bounce rate”. Google has even provided a formula to calculate your bounce rate which is:

Bounce Rate = Visits that left after one page / Total number of visits

 For example, during a month you received 1000 visits and out of which 600 were counted as  bounces, then your bounce rate for that month will be 600 divided by 1000, which equals to 0.6%. Obviously, the lower the bounce rate on your site, the better your site performance since it would mean that visitors are finding your content useful and informative and are navigating to other pages to find similar articles.

In my next post, I will try to concentrate on “Ways to Improve your Bounce Rate“, if you have any suggestions, please do share in the comments section so that I can include them as well. Thanks and hope you found this information useful.

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Praveen Rajarao is an Entrepreneur and in his spare time blogs on his website –http://www.dailymorningcoffee.com and http://www.pbgeeks.com. His topics range from blogging to technology to affiliate programs and making money online and how-to guides. Daily Morning Coffee is also accepting Guest Posts from Professional Bloggers at this time, take a look at “Write For DMC” page for more details on the same.

6 comments

  1. Because blogs are set up with regular content where you read, you leave, and you come back the next day for more, a blogger’s bounce rate is traditionally higher than the bounce rate of an e-commerce site, for example.

    It’s still a very good idea to try to get people to keep viewing content on your blog, especially if you are trying to make a living with advertising. But new bloggers should not freak out if their bounce rate numbers are really high — it’s par for the course. 🙂

    I’ll be interested to read your tips in the next post!

    1. Emily – Thanks for the comment, I agree with you that bloggers should not worry too much, but if there are ways to keep your visitors interested and stay back on your site, I feel one should think of implementing those. Of course you have a good point on “living with advertising”, I concur.

  2. I have found on our stock photos website that we get a reliable amount of sales per “non-bouncing” visitor.  However I was able to make the predictor much more accurate by using Advanced Segments. 

    In our case, if we get >5 Page Views and >180 seconds spent on our site, we have a strong chance to make a sale.  Surely this will be different for each website, but it works really well for us.

    I’m able to take that data a step further by studying where these Advance Segment visitors come from, and how many we tend to get per day.  It really helps focus our efforts.

    1. Dan – Thanks for sharing your thoughts on the subject. It is nice to know you made considerable changes by using the Advanced Segments, do share your ideas and give us more information on the same. It maybe useful for the readers here.

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