By Derek Miller
You’ve got a new website up and running, everything looks good, and viewers are going through the pages. Then, you decide to take a look at the analytics for the page only to find that the bounce rate is through the roof. Why? you ask yourself.
There’s something wrong with your page that’s causing more people to leave within seconds of landing on your page than staying. It doesn’t make for a successful website, much less leave a good impression. Following are three ways to minimize your website bounce rate and make more people stick around.
Avoid Bad Design
When a user lands on your main page, then bounces, it may be due to bad design. Most website readers view from the center of the page, then move their eye outwards to the sides. It’s where the eye naturally moves to when a website loads. If you’re putting the information that they seek in a side column, they’re less likely to stick around as they don’t find it when the page loads. That’s one example of bad design.
Another example of bad design is using walls of text and little white space. Text is more difficult to read on a monitor, especially when it’s in a small font clumped together in large paragraphs. Break up the text, put in more white space, and use larger fonts. It does your viewers a favor and keeps them around longer to read. If the topic is complicated, use infographics to break it down into an easy-to-read format.
Stop Attracting the Wrong Kind of Customer
Say you’re running an ecommerce website that sells widgets. Widget A and it’s similar, but different, Widget B are two of your most popular products. If you haven’t done a great job differentiating the content on each product page, you may end up leading your customers to the wrong widget.
SEO is a critical tool for minimizing bounce rates because it ensures that customers who find you via Google or other search engines have clear expectations about what they are clicking through to. Without proper SEO techniques, you may be attracting the wrong customers or directing potential customers to the wrong products.
Take the time to go through the SEO keywords and make sure they’re directly related to the item you’re selling. Make sure the differences in similar products are properly attributed and that you’re providing a clear representation of that page through your keywords, page title, meta description, and other on-page content. Search engine crawlers then correct the information that’s getting sent to the databases. It stops the bounce rate by not showing your page to the wrong kind of customer.
Don’t Forget a Call to Action
One of the biggest mistakes websites make is neglecting the ‘next step’ that it wants the user to take. We are creatures that crave direction and this is especially true in new environments. If your users are uncertain as to what the next step for them is after landing on a page, they will likely leave the site.
If your site is an online store, what products are relevant to the page they landed on? Make sure you are clear and precise with directing them to the next most relevant page. If you run a blog, maybe they will want to learn more about you or see other similar articles. Whatever action you want a user to take, make sure you make it easy for them to follow it.
Popups, although annoying, are a great way to communicate to users about what action you want them to take. The popup could be a lead form to grow your email lists, a special product offer to encourage a sale, or simply a link to a page to learn more information about you or your website. By using creative ways to communicate to your visitors, you’ll see more activity on your pages and a lower bounce rate.
Turning bouncers into customers or repeat visitors is your ultimate goal. Go over your site with a fine-tooth comb to uncover what’s wrong and fix it. It takes time, but it’s time well spent if you can retain your visitors for longer than one page.
Derek Miller (@itismillertime) is a content marketing consultant for CopyPress. CopyPress is a leading digital content production company, specializing in articles, infographics, interactives, and videos. For content marketing advice and more information about our capabilities, visit CopyPress.