No webmaster wants high bounce rate on his/her blog. No matter on which niche you post, a high bouncing rate is not good for any of the niche. Some webmasters try their best to reduce it but they are not able to improve bounce rate. But if proper tricks are followed, you can not only decrease the bouncing rate (BR) but can also increase the user-experience as well.
We are listing here the reasons for the high Bounce Rate and the ways by which you can reduce bounce rate of your blog.
How to reduce Bounce Rate of a website
1. Text size too small
If your blog font-size is too small for anyone to read then obviously, no user wants to burn his eyes just for the sake of your site.
Consider increasing the font-size to some optimal size so that it is properly read by anyone visiting your pages.
2. Text size too large
If the font size of the text of your blog is too large then also it can be a problem in the reading. So decrease the size to some extent so that it does not create a problem while reading.
In the above 2 sections, I have denied you making the font size big and simultaneously, I am asking you to not to make the size as small too.
At this point, you might have got confused considering the text-size.
The general rule is that you judge your site by yourself that whether you can read the text properly with naked-eyes or not.
3. Lack of white spacing between lines
You might have noticed that on some blogs, their content is too cluttered to read. So just avoid this and wherever required, give proper spacing in between 2 lines.
4. All content within single paragraph
Consider the below 2 images and let me know which one your liked the most.
The first image has all the text written in same paragraph only, which makes it difficult for the user to read. While the second image has breaks in between various lines and is written in separate paragraphs.
So consider using different paragraphs, wherever required, if you want to improve high bounce rate.
5. No Internal Linking
If the page on which user has landed lacks any internal linking to the other pages of your blog then it is not a good sign as part of SEO is concerned. Whether you have provided the relevant information to the user or not but if he is unable to find any room on your blog then he has to close his browser and eventually, you will end up in high bounce rate.
In order to solve this problem, consider adding internal links to other pages of your blog, so that if user likes your content then he can check other pages too. Also make sure that you only link relevant articles to each other.
Suppose you have a post written on Lamborghini car, then it is worth linking any article on its old models or any other car such as Ferrari. But what if you link any article of any Hollywood movie. It will sound weird. Correct?
I hope you got the idea that how to do proper linking to improve bounce rate.
6. Too much Internal Linking
As someone has said, “Too much of anything is bad”. Same applies to online world also. Internal linking works but too much of it can hurt your user experience and as such, the overall readability of the article. So, link to old posts but do in a proper and well-defined way only so that you can reduce the bounce rate of your website.
7. Internal Links color is not so contrasting to text
Would you be able to differentiate between normal text and linked-text, if the color of link and text is almost similar? I know it is very difficult to differentiate in this case and the visitor is not going to bring any special lenses in order to find the links.
Consider below 2 images:
The text is same and the font-color text is also same but the only difference is in the color of normal text and the linked-text.
According to you, which image has better color-contrast? Obviously, the second one. The red color in second picture clearly indicates that this is something different from the normal content and the user might hover his mouse over these colored words.
I am not saying that you have to hyperlink only in red but the bottom-line is that there should be natural color-distinction between the hrefs and non-hrefs. So the color of linked words and normal text also plays a major role in improving the bounce-rate.
8. Fake Content
Do not try to fool your users by serving them fake content. Have you seen some websites that talk of technology but below the content, they put photos of Anne Hathaway? Actually those blogs want to sell some technology related stuff but in order to attract young crowd, they embed photos of female actresses. Why a person searching for Hollywood models will be interested in buying an iphone?
So, do not confuse your visitors. If you are talking of iphone then embed iphone pictures in your article and if you are talking of any actress then posting her images in that article makes sense.
9. No Related Posts
Give more and more options to the users to explore your blog. Add the related posts section beneath the content or in sidebar so that the users can click on the similar type stuff and can enjoy more time on your website.
Now-a-days many wordpress themes provide this functionality as built-in. If your theme does not provide the option to show the related posts then you can install any wordpress plugin such as Contextual Related Posts.If you are good in coding then you can show the related articles with custom code as well.
Continue reading below to know some more ways to improve the bounce rate.
I can’t say that how many people would agree to my statement that external links should be opened in new tab and not in same tab. But you should consider one thing for sure that if any user clicks on any external link on your website and if that new site opens in the same window then user leaves control of your site.
Why you want users to leave your own blog and go to any another website. So I would suggest you that you open all external links in new tab and all internal ones in same tab.
To open the external urls in new window, simply add target=”_blank” in your anchor tag.
12. Use Images
Adding images in your post makes the article appealing and helps the users to stay for more time on your website. If you are writing a tutorial on anything then you might need to add multiple images. Do this without any worries. Many people think that adding too many pictures in an article will increase the page-load time and thus, they defer adding multiple photos.
But images increase the overall user-experience. Along with well-written article, beautiful pictures will add more beauty to the article. For resolving page-loading time, you can use any cache and image compression plugins. But don’t shy from embedding pictures in the post.
Also in case of tutorials, pictures help a lot to users as they can visualize properly. This in turn will bring them again and again on your blog.
13. Use Videos
Can you believe that the videos can increase the user experience more than what images do. I would say the first thing for making the users to stay longer on your website is videos, then comes the flash, .gif images, simple images (.jpg,.png) and then the written-text.
Video –> Flash –> Gif picture –> Other image types (.jpeg/.jpg/.png) –> Text
Suppose you have a video of 4 minutes which you have embedded in the article. If the video is related to the content of your post then with the help of video, you can make the user stay on your blog for atleast 4 minutes. And if he watches your video with full concentration and in the end, he likes the video; then chances are that he will check your other articles too. Thus, video has helped you in reducing the bounce rate.
14. Page-loading time should be low
Suppose you visit a website and that site takes forever to load. Will you even think of visiting that site again in your life? I know that you can’t think of landing on that site even in your dreams too. But why? Because that site forced you to wait and it stole some minutes of your precious time.
Same holds true for your visitors too. No user will stay for minutes just to see what you have written for them, obviously the content on your blog is not a love-letter for your user from his (her) girlfriend (boyfriend).
If your pages are taking too much time in loading completely then work on reducing the loading time so that the user-experience can be improved.
If you are on wordpress then try using some cache plugins such as W3 Total cache. Caching plugins in wordpress plays a major role in improving the bounce rate of any blog.
15. Do not use irritating Popups
You landed on a page and instead of displaying the content; the site shows you a pop-up. Will you like that behavior? Obviously No.
Anyways, you have closed the popup and weird, that popup appears again. I can understand how you would be feeling at this stage. It stays there until you enter your emailId and click Submit. The webmaster has become successful in collecting your email here but what about user-experience?
Also, many users would not be willing to submit their email details. I know that collecting emails is one of the crucial factors for the success of any blog but can it be on the cost of user-experience?
Don’t you think that you should give more weightage to your users rather than in just grabbing their email information?
Remember that the customer is prince, king and everything. Grab his email id but only on his willingness. If you want to show popups then show but respect the user’s decision of closing it without entering his personal details.
If he wants to submit his details then welcome him and add his email in your database but if he does not want to submit his email then also welcome him. You should not have any concerns whether the user submits his details or not to you. If he doesn’t do then you need to improve your blog, whether the improvement is in terms of look and feel or whether it is in the form of your article-writing.
Remember, we cannot force anything on users. Infact, they are free to force us anything they want. If they do not want the popups then avoid that and if they want then throw the popups on them.
So in order to improve bounce rate, use popups only if user wants.
In today’s era, every person keeps social identity. When I say social identity, I mean to say that every person has his/her accounts on social media channels. I am a blogger and so, my language revolves around blogging itself and I hope you understand what I am speaking -:).
Do you share good articles, news and pictures on your social media channels such as facebook and twitter? If your answer is yes then you can expect the same answer from your readers as well.
So, if the reader likes your article then provide him a means to share that article onto his facebook and twitter accounts.
As of today, most of the themes provide social media buttons integrated into them but if your theme does not provide this functionality then you can head over to any wordpress plugin such as Social Warfare.
If visitor wants to search anything on your blog then in order to find that; either he can scan your all published posts and see if any relevant article fulfills his desire or he can do that through search button on your blog. But what if there is no search textbox on your blog?
Do you think that he will go with the first option and will scan your all articles? I don’t think that he has so much time to manually search each and every article. What if he sees a nice textbox that allows him to find anything on your blog? This will increase his user-experience and interactivity with your blog too.
So make sure that you include a search box. If your theme does not provide the search box then you can include Google-search functionality too on your site.
18. Use Responsive Theme
Check the wordpress theme that you are using. Is it SEO friendly and does it enhances the user-experience?
If you have a good theme then your theme itself will solve many basic problems such as Page-speed, header and footer sections, related articles on sidebar or beneath the article etc.
Paid themes are always best such as Elegant Divi. But you can also start with any free template. WordPress directory has many free themes, check out that. Some themes are provided by wordpress itself, so you can happily go with any of them. When you start getting traffic, you can anytime switch to any paid template.
19. Use Breadcrumbs
Breadcrumbs help a user to easily navigate your blog. It further tells him that currently where he is on your site. Breadcrumbs are basically for navigation only. I would suggest that you keep breadcrumbs name wisely. They prove useful in reducing the bounce rate but can be annoying on mobile versions. So I would suggest turning them off for mobile version of your blog.
20. Audio Files
I suggested you to use images and videos in your posts. There comes another option also for you that can force user to stay some more time on your pages. That option is audio files. Though audio has less impact than video but then also it’s a worth to try. If you are able to add video then its best but if video is not available and you can patch any audio file then do not hesitate to try that.
21. A/B Split Testing
Always be ready to try something new. I have listed several ways that can help you to improve bounce rate. These ways will definitely help you but then also you should do some Split Testing on your blog.
On one post, you can use some tricks that I have explained and on other, do not use those tricks. Then with the help of any analytical service that you are using such as Google Analytics, you can yourself see that whether using the above tactics is working for you or not.
Secondly, you can deploy some of the above ways on one post and on other post, you can use some other ways. Then you can compare that which one worked more for you.
Please note that the content and niche of both the articles can also be a factor. So while doing testing, choose the same niche.
22. Google Analytics
I would suggest that you must use Google Analytics, a free reporting service from google. It will help you in understanding your visitors and what they are looking on your blog. It will also help you in checking the landing and exit pages. It will also help you in A/B split testing. If used properly, google analytics can help you to reduce bounce rate of your website drastically.
I have mentioned multiple ways by which you can improve the bounce rate of your website.
Let me know which all tactics you are using and which one is working more for you.