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One of the most important, but sometimes overlooked, components of a web strategy for your business is the “bounce rate” on your site. It doesn’t help that bounce rate is an often misunderstood concept in a business SEO strategy that isn’t always clearly defined.

Bounce rate is a term used for analyzing visits to your business website. Google Analytics defines bounce rate as measure of quality visits to your website by measuring the percentage of single page visits to your site.

Doesn’t exactly clear things up, does it?

Bounce rate in simpler terms, is simply the percentage of visitors to your site who only look at the page they entered on and then click back to Google’s search page. If your bounce rate is 80 percent, that means four out of five visitors to your page only look at one page and then leave, whether it’s your homepage or an internal page.

Good use of search engine optimization and keywords may have ranked you high on search engine list and brought you initial hits to the site, but a high bounce rate means most of the people finding your site aren’t staying very long and are not looking around at your various pages and services.

That translates into a low quality visit.

Of course, whether a high bounce rate is really bad depends on the type of website. Many pages only need viewers to see one page. These are pages that are counting on visitors to click on ads or other platforms and not really interested in providing information on the page.

However, for most businesses, a lot of effort is made to provide information explaining the goods and services they offer on their websites and they carry a lot of internal links to other pages on the site. This can be especially true if you are using your website to allow customers to learn about your products and then place orders.

The goal of most business SEO strategies is the have potential customers stay awhile, look around, hit the various internal links, and ultimately decide to do business with the company. That’s a quality visit.

So there are obvious reasons to want to improve your bounce rate, which in this case, actually means you lower it. A lower bounce rate means potential customers are exploring your website.

When you first sign onto a service like Google Analytics, you’ll be given an average bounce rate. It’s important, but it’s really only the first step in understanding what visitors to your page are doing.

Analytics can tell you a lot about your site, including the bounce rate on different pages. For example, you may find the bounce rate on your homepage is actually low, but many visitors to your site are finding one of your internal pages that has less information about your business, but satisfies what they were looking for. That page may have a much higher bounce rate.

By checking each page bounce rate, you can determine which of your pages are leading more people to view other pages on your site, and which pages need to be improved to encourage them to look around more.

You can also determine which referrers (such as Google search) and social media are generating the longest visits. For example, you may find that people finding your page through Twitter have a high bounce rate, but visitors coming from Facebook stay longer and have a lower bounce rate. That could mean you’re doing something right on Facebook, but need to improve your Twitter feed.

In the end, the bounce rate of your site and its various pages is one of the most important parts of analyzing your website and its effectiveness. It’s a clear sign of what is, and isn’t selling your business on your website.

Clearbridge Branding Agency can help you fully analyze your site and develop strategies that will bring your bounce rates down and keep potential customers eyes on your site longer. You’ve spent a lot of time and effort to bring potential customers to your website. Now it’s time to take the steps needed to have them stay awhile and ultimately do business with you by contacting us to help.