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Since deploying Janrain Engage to our website, which includes a javascript snippet that is loaded from their servers, I've noticed about 10-15% increase in our bounce rate. I think this is artificial and does not represent a true 'bounce'; what sort of factors might have caused this?

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up vote 1 down vote accepted

This will ultimately be an issue for your script provider to debug, (would recommend you contact them directly) unless you have implemented any customizations to their scripts or the Google Analytics tracking code.

Look for:

  • Scripting errors which prevent the analysis of cookies after they are set
  • Variables in the Janrain script which conflict with Google Analytics variables (particularly variables named utm or _gaq)
  • Extensive use of cookies for storage which may overflow the allowed cookie size (and flush out the cookies set by Google Analytics)
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You're looking at the overall bounce rate, but you should drill down to see if there are any specific pages that are showing an increase in bounce rate.

  • Set up 2 comparison date spans - 1 from before the JS deployment and 1 after.
  • Go to Top Landing Pages and compare the bounce rates
  • Is one page showing a significant increase (above 15%) which is raising the average? If so, this is the troublesome page.
  • If not, and the increase is evenly spread across all pages, you'll have to do some more digging.
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