How to Diagnose And Reduce The Bounce Rate On Your Blog

How to diagnose and reduce the bounce rate on your blog
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You put in a lot of work to create and promote blog content that appeals to your target audience. A high bounce rate is the last thing you want to see.

Visitors land on your blog for a number of reasons. Maybe a branded or paid social media post directed traffic to a specific article. Or maybe someone visited your blog to get a better sense of your business’s character before buying your service.

Oftentimes, visitors come across your blog posts by way of organic SERPs. If they get the impression that your content relates to their search, they may be compelled to find out what you have to say.

For example, let’s say that you write a blog post about music licensing for film or video. With a quick Google search, anyone who wants to learn more about this topic can filter through the top-ranking articles to find the right information.

If the content you share is ranked highly and relevant to searchers, you’re far less likely to end up with excessive bounce rates. However, there are many other factors that also contribute to your blog’s bounce rate.

This post details the significance of bounce rate and provides pragmatic strategies to reduce it.

Is There A Golden Standard For Average Bounce Rate?

Before sharing tips on improving your blog’s bounce rate, we want to preface by saying that a high bounce rate isn’t inherently bad.

In fact, the average bounce rate will vary depending on the purpose of your website and blog.

Neil Patel offers helpful statistics on average bounce rates for different platforms:

  • Simple landing pages intended to convert visitors into customers have an average bounce rate of 70-90%
  • Service-driven websites have an average bounce rate of 10-30%
  • Content websites have an average bounce rate of 40-60%

These rates are important to consider, especially if your blog is housed on a service-driven or other type of website. However, the blog itself will typically have a bounce rate between 70-90%.

With this information in mind, where does your blog’s bounce rate currently stand?

Here’s how you find out:

Google Analytics provides a holistic overview of your website’s average bounce rate, but you’re also able to segment bounce rate to isolate your website’s landing pages.

From here, you can go a step further with the “secondary dimension” function to narrow the results and identify your blog’s average bounce rates.

Why Your Blog Might Have A High Bounce Rate

As you survey the bounce rates for each blog post, you may notice trends in your blog’s overall performance. While there might be a few outliers, the data from Google Analytics should give you a clearer picture of how visitors interact with your content.

Don’t panic if your blog’s bounce rate falls within the typical 70-90% range. Let it go, but still prioritize tactics that might help you improve those bounce rates either way.

Several factors contribute to your blog’s current bounce rate (i.e., the blog’s layout, formatting, page load time, relevance, etc.).

A high bounce rate might signal that visitors aren’t finding what they’re looking for on your blog. If Google RankBrain interprets high bounce rates as unsatisfied search intent, this can negatively impact your blog content’s ranking in SERPs.

Or maybe they ARE finding what they need, then bouncing because they only have interest in the content and not your product or service offering.

Regardless, higher rankings lead to more visibility for your content. It remains important to start implementing strategies for reducing bounce rate.

Strategies To Reduce Your Bounce Rate

Optimize Content To Rank Higher On SERPs

To ensure that your content attracts and retains new visitors, you need to optimize your blog for search engines.

The key here is relevance. One of the most effective ways to reduce bounce rate is to understand your target audience’s search intent and write blog content that piques their interest.

By targeting long-tail keywords with high search volumes — and low keyword competition — you will be able to take the guesswork out of producing content that visitors want to see.

Integrating backlinks into the copy is also a smart strategic move, but make sure that the links open in a new window. If you don’t, this can lead to higher rather than lower bounce rates.

SEO is a learned skill, which is why enlisting SEO professionals can set you on the right track to increase organic traffic to your blog and reduce bounce rates.

Ensure Fast Page Load Times

Bounce rate is closely linked to page load time. According to this study, 40% of people will abandon a website that takes more than 3 seconds to load.

As you can see from the infographic below, visitors will bounce from a web page on impulse if the content isn’t readily available to them.

How to Reduce Bounce Rate: PageSpeed Impact on Bounce Rate

Source URL:  https://think.storage.googleapis.com/docs/mobile-page-speed-new-industry-benchmarks.pdf

Your content might be well-researched and SEO-driven, but this is null and void if the page takes more than a couple of seconds to load.

To prevent this from happening, we recommend using plugins like Google PageSpeed Insights Extension, WP Fastest Cache, and WP Rocket. [EDITOR’S NOTE: We have a full post about optimizing web page load time with more suggestions.]

Give Your Blog’s Visitors A Reason To Return

Adopting an informed and strategic approach is critical when it comes to diagnosing and reducing your blog’s bounce rate.

If you discover that some blog posts have higher bounce rates than others, take the time to unearth the possible causes and implement changes so that the bounce rate will improve.

As you work toward an improved bounce rate, remember that a high bounce rate doesn’t necessarily indicate that you’ve gone off course.

Context is important, so make sure that you know how your bounce rate compares to other blogs and websites with a similar purpose.


Feature Image Credit:Okeyes (WMF), CC0, via Wikimedia Commons

Disclaimer: The views and opinions stated in this post are that of the author, and Return On Now may or may not agree with any or all of the commentary.

This guest post brought to you courtesy of Return On NowProfessional Austin SEO and PPC Services Company.

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Mackenzie Scott is a copywriter at Soundstripe, a royalty free music company that provides creators and businesses with radio-quality music for videos.

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