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Google Analytics – Bounce back from a high bounce rate!

Bounce back from a high bounce rate!Anyone who has explored the Google Analytics data for their own websites (if you haven’t, get in touch today!) will know that a major metric shown is the bounce rate for the website. The term “bounce rate” may not mean very much to most people but it is vitally important to the success or failure of many websites.

The bounce-rate gives a percentage of those people who left a given page (generally the front page) on a website without viewing any other pages – i.e. they didn’t explore any further. It is totally different to another Analytics metric, exit rates, which tells the number of people who left from a particular page.

In most cases (not all), a high bounce-rate means that your site and its content are not doing the job properly. The information and the way it is displayed is not enticing site visitors to stick around and find out more about your business. A high bounce-rate is not good *.

Fortunately, there are a whole range of measures and tactics that the site owner and their website developer can deploy to reduce the bounce-rate and improve the effectiveness of a site.

#1 – Ensure that the first page loads quickly.

To do this, optimise all images on the page, right down to the minimum possible. Your web designer must use clean code and a caching plugin will be beneficial if you are using WordPress. Most importantly of all, be sure that your site is housed on a fast server (ask your business contacts for recommendations here).

#2 – Use a prominent Call To Action (CTA)

Your site visitor needs to find the CTA within a few seconds of arriving at the site. This means, if you are an online store, the SHOP NOW needs to stand out from the remainder of content on the page. If your site makes the visitor search for what to do next, you’ve lost them.

#3 – Get the Hook in

They’ve come to your site for a reason now entice them to stay. Offer value on that very first page and you’ll get the “hook” in. Think about what they want to see?  For ideas on what you could do for your site, check out the front page of BCF’s website – it has Instagram pictures, video clips, bargains in the store among various other items. In my opinion, BCF has a few too many on their front page but a couple on yours would work a treat!

#4 – Avoid Distractions

Link-baiting from other sites (these are commercial ads/articles with catching headlines that lead off-site) and pop-ups are a real turn-off for most site visitors. We’ve seen them all on other sites so why do we want to see more of them when we come to your site? Don’t use content that will distract from the real purpose of visiting your website – making connections and selling products.

#5 – Get an attractive, eye-catching site design from the word GO!

Do this step right from the beginning and you won’t have to redesign later on to fix a dodgy site. Be sure to choose a web designer that has created sites that will appeal to your industry. Ask them if they know about heat maps (these track visitors use of a page) and how to create sites that draw the visitor’s attention to the more desirable parts of the page. A good designer will make everything else so much easier.

By making a visit to the front page of your site worthwhile using the the above tips, you will dramatically improve the number of visitors who stay on-site and explore a bit further. Be sure to track the success of your changes through Google Analytics – you can watch as the bounce-rate begins to fall and your conversion rates begin to rise.

 

* Please note: While vitally important for multi-page sites, the bounce-rate is not an important measure for one-page websites and sites that have all the necessary details for customer conversion on the front page.

Don’t have the time to create FRESH content?

Don’t have the time to create FRESH content?Creating fresh content for your website audience is a great idea for a number of reasons – not the least of which is the importance that search giant Google places on it. Any website owner with experience will tell you that fresher content scores big “points” with the Google algorithm and this leads to better placement in search results.  

I can hear you now –  this sounds like an easy way to improve any site’s “search-ability”, but who has the time to sit down and create mountains of content when there is a business to be run?

Trish, from LUXE Fashion House in Bowen, had recently read about Google’s fresh content “policy” and she asked Rusty Mango Design whether she should have a blog on her new website to satisfy this requirement. I replied that a blog is a great place to start but it’s only one of many options and not really one that suits if you are a time-poor small business owner.

So – the big question – how do you keep Google happy if you don’t have the time to create content?

The answer – get onboard with some User-Generated Content (UGC) – created by your own customers and site visitors.

Instagram Feeds

An Instagram feed for your website is surprisingly easy to set up, depending on the framework used for building the site. The feed can be set up to display images from throughout the web and be further refined through the use of hashtags. For example, online store Kaleido Kollection uses the hashtag #kaleidok to run a small competition on their website. Any customer who uses the tag to display their recent purchases on Instagram gets almost instant recognition on the Kaleido Kollection site and automatically enters the draw to win store credit.

Forums

Once again, easy to set up depending on the framework, a forum allows for customers to log in and talk about their experiences with your business with others. They can “show off” their latest purchases, share ideas and even help each other with advice and support. A forum, however, must be moderated by someone to ensure that brand damaging information is not appearing otherwise the forum could be doing more harm than good.

Note: by default, most forums are set up to “no index” which means the GoogleBot cannot access the information inside. If you are using the forum as a means to drive up your Google ranking, this setting needs to be changed.

Selected product tests

Do you have a “favourite” return customer who is already an advocate for your brand? Why not reward them with a free product in return for website content? For the small cost of an item from your business, you could get them to take photos of the product in actual use, write a testimonial on the merits of your services or even ask them onboard for a guest blog entry detailing their experiences working with. I know this may seem like a “bribe” but, if it is done honestly, there is no-one better to talk about your goods and services than the person who uses them.

Competitions

Belkin, a manufacturer of after-market cords, chargers and cases for phones and tables, recently teamed up with LEGO and brought out an iPhone case with LEGO “bumps” on the rear of the case. As part of the launch of this particular product, Belkin ran a competition for its customers, challenging them to use their case and additional LEGO bricks to make marvellous creations. The response was tremendous and as a result, Belkin received loads of entries and content for their site.

Conclusion

As you can tell, some of these will still require a bit of your time to moderate and apply to your site. But in the end, regardless of which way you go, your business (and its website) will be the winner. Not only will you free yourself from creating all new content yourself but by using content created by your business’ community, you are endearing yourself to those who follow your brand.

 

 

Rusty Mango Design

Rusty Mango Design