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Ok so First for those who don't know:
What is bounce rate
Ok basically Bounce rate is an online marketing term often used when analyzing website traffic and drilling down the data to see where and how you can improve your blog or website and keep your visitors around for longer.
Having a high Bounce rate is not good and you should try and keep it as low as possible, so for example if you had around 2,000 visitors to your website or blog and a bounce rate of 50% basically means you only have around 1,000 “good” visitors the ones that stick around and view more than one page/s.
“Bounce rate and Exit rate are often misunderstood and get classed as the same”
Often Bounce rate and Exit rate are confused as being both the same, so now we know what Bounce rate is as outlined above let me explain a little about Exit rate.
Just what is Exit Rate?
Exit rates are simply pages where your visitors leave your site, so for example a visitor comes to your website or blog and enters through page A, goes to page B, and then to page C and then leaves your website or blog after page C and goes off somewhere else or to anther website.
Because this visitor left your website on page C the Exit rate would increase on this page as a result.
“Note: exit rates need to be studied in order to work out why people are leaving from certain pages.”
So as you can see Bounce rate and Exit rate are two different things and should not be confused as the same – good, glad we got that clear, shall we move on?
How Write an Article That Will Keep Your Readers Engaged
The problem with a vast majority of people who surf the internet nowadays is they have very short attention spans, if they can’t find what they are looking for they’re gone and off to another website – so as a result trying to keep your readers engaged and on your blog is becoming more and more difficult .
But don’t worry, there are a few ways you can help to keep your readers on your site for longer and below I’m going to outline a few of the basics that will definitely make a difference!
Using pictures or graphics in your posts on your blog or website is a great way to quickly grab the attention of your readers – it could be a simple illustration to complement your post or an infographic that easily displays information to your target audience.
2. Choose an Easy Simple Font
A bit of a no brainer, but I have come across websites that love to have fonts that make you squint, nauseous and basically just a struggle to read their content.
3. Dark Font on Light Background
As well as having an easy simple font the actual background and font color can play a big part in how your visitors engage on your site and also makes a huge difference with your bounce rate.
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve landed on a website or blog that has a black background with bright yellow or white text – even before the site has fully loaded I’m normally gone!
Is it just me or do you do the same?
I think the general consensus would be to have a light background with a darker font – what do you think?
4. Use Short Sentences
There’s nothing worse that staring at a huge block of text thinking to yourself how the hell am I going to get through all of that!
As I mentioned above people have short attention spans and what you‘ll find is if you have huge block of text on your website or blog your readers will not fully read and absorb it,
Now take a look at that same text and split it up into manageable pieces or chunks and you’ve:
- Made your text more digestible for your readers.
- Made your text easy on the eye.
- Made your text more scannable.
And this brings us onto point 5.
5. Use Short Paragraphs – 2-3 Sentences at Most
Now that you’ve broken down your text into manageable chunks just how big should these chunks be?
Well I tend to keep my paragraphs between 2 and 3 sentences at the most sometimes a little more if I get carried away, but generally this is my rule of thumb and it keeps the text flowing, easily digestible, and you will find your readers will flow from one paragraph to the next.
6. Use Numbers or Bullets Points
Using bullet points is a great way to break up your text and grab your readers attention basically you’re giving them the “meat without all the vegetables” – they can see easily without all of the clutter!
“the meat without all the vegetables”
When using bullet points, on the other hand, you cut down on the need to add more words, you’ll find your post will come together a lot quicker. Whether you’re sharing your top 10 favorite WordPress Plugins, or 5 reasons why these WordPress Plugins suck! – Bullet points will always save you time and will help to engage your readers.
7. Use Bold Headings
I’m sure you all do use bold headings throughout your posts and content but thought I would include this at the end of this list just in case there are a few who don’t – do you use headings?
Not only will bold headings help to differentiate the sections in your post content the bold headings will also draw the reader’s eye.
So if you have someone who is quickly scanning through your content the bold heading my just grab their attention long enough for them to stick around just that little bit longer.
How to Reduce Bounce Rate
1. Improve Loading Times
I can’t count how many times I have left a website after waiting for it to load. If you have a slow loading website I’m confident you’ll be losing a lot of traffic due to this. Google has also announced that the website loading time will now play a role in determining search engine rankings.
A few simple tweaks on your site will make all the difference:
- Reduce the number of images on your site.
- Compress the size of the images (if you’re using WordPress check this out).
- Specify image dimensions.
- Cache your web pages (if you’re using WordPress check this out).
- Reduce 301 redirects.
- Reduce the number of HTTP requests.
There are more ways to reduce load time but I will save that for another dedicated post.
Note on images:
- GIF is ideal for images with few colors like logos.
- JPEG is great for images with lots of colors and details like photographs.
- PNG is the choice when you need high quality transparent images.
Check out our recommend fast WordPress themes.
2. External Links
What is the problem with having external links on your website or blog?
It’s not so much of a problem it just means you have more chance of your visitors clicking on an external link and disappearing from your blog or website, basically including too many external links on your website or blog can increase your bounce rate simply by giving visitors additional avenues by which to leave your site.
3. Popups and Clutter
Gawd this is one of my BIG pet hates popups and clutter – it really annoys me when I have to fight to clear the screen so I can see what’s underneath. It was only the other day I landed on a webpage and I was clicking all over the screen to clear the popup ads that kept appearing, in the end I gave up and moved or “bounced” to another site.
The email optins are tolerable and I understand why they are being used – dam I even have one over on the main site.
If you have an overrun cluttered website, I’m sure you know who you are! – Maybe you like that kind of look – good luck to you!
4. Use Internal Linking
A great way to reduce your bounce rate is to use internal linking by this I mean linking to other content within your website or blog, some more benefits of internal linking include:
- Better user experience.
- Passing on the link-juice.
- Anchor text advantage.
- Decrease bounce rate.
- Exposure to old content.
And finally, …
“just mopping the sweat from my brow!”
5. Display Related Posts
You have probably seen the related post widgets or plugins at the bottom of a lot of the articles you read, I bet you’ve even clicked on a few – so you can you see what you’ve done you moved on over to anther post within the same blog – what does that mean? Yep you guessed it, you’ve reduced the bounce rate of your visit.
Although I don’t have a related post displayed on this blog I do on my other sites and I have noticed a lot of visitors are clicking though to other content within my sites, they do work!
What are your thoughts? drop me a message below – id love to hear from you!