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I read a lot of blogs and tips articles on how to decrease bounce rate. I feel I write very good content (niche is science) and I setup a good design, with attractive features (like download as PDF etc.), increased site loading times (google page speed score is 80+) but even then my bounce rate is always above 90, sometimes 100 :(.

I get 42% traffic from the US and google analytics reports no visitor staying for more than 10-12 seconds. Please guide me.

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I removed your URL to prevent this from being closed as too localized. –  John Conde Jun 25 '11 at 16:10
    
thank you john :) –  Sam Jun 26 '11 at 2:38

3 Answers 3

up vote 2 down vote accepted

If you are experiencing high bounce rates that is a good sign your pages or content are either low in quality or poorly designed. Specifically it might be:

  • Poor content If your content isn't high quality users will know (by not finding what they are looking for or not feeling confident in your data) and go look for another website that offers better information.

  • Poor usability If your pages are hard to use because the content is cluttered, features are hard to find, colors are harsh on the eyes, etc, then users will leave and go look for another website to find what they are looking for.

  • Poor navigation If it is difficult to navigate your website then obviously users will find it hard to visit multiple pages.

  • Slow loading pages Google is pressing the idea of faster websites to webmasters for a reason. The evidence clearly shows faster pages mean higher conversions and slower pages mean lost conversions.

  • Users don't find what they are looking for If you try to optimize your pages for one thing, but the page really is about another, then users will be disappointed when they find the page doesn't have the content they were looking for.

So obviously what you want to do is:

  • Make sure your page is clean (not cluttered) and pleasing on the eyes.

  • Make sure your content is unique and high quality

  • Make sure the page titles, meta description (since it may be shown in Google's search results), headings, etc, all accurately describe what the page's content is about

  • Make sure things like logins and site navigation are easy to find and use.

  • Make sure your pages load quickly. Here are some tools and ideas for doing that.

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But now I have a page speed score of 91? That is not helping in any way. Anyway, thank you. I will try those methods and kepp trying. Thanks. –  Sam Jun 26 '11 at 2:40

The stats you gave make no sense. No visitor stays more then 10 seconds? Check if the GA tags are on every page of your website. Also, have you considered that the problem may be Google Analytics determination of what is a bounce which is 1 page view. Many blogs or news sites may consider 1pageview per visitor normal. If you present the user with a download PDF link, perhaps clicking that link is considered a bounce. If your bounce rate is 90% then page views per visitor should be just above 1. Is it?

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Yes, it is just 1. I suspect that these are bots. My traffic is around 50 unique visitors a day and GA reports that 95% are new visitors. Their Avg. time on site is around 10-12 seconds and page views per visitor is just 1 or 1.2 (rarely). This problem is frustrating me as I worked very hard to prepare notes and write blog posts. –  Sam Jun 26 '11 at 3:21
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@sam: Are you sure bots would trigger GA? I was under the impression that Javascript would need to be executed. I know I get lots of bot traffic that does not show up on GA. –  UpTheCreek Jun 27 '11 at 8:27
    
Did you check that the Google Analytics code is on every page of your website? If it's only on the home page then you will be seeing exactly the stats you described. –  donaldthe Jun 29 '11 at 15:58

The key to Bounce Rate is relevancy.

Where are your users coming from? If they were searching for something that was close enough to the content your offering to find it, but not close enough to find the information they are actually looking for, they will bounce.

For example, if I'm looking for "Source Code" The movie, and I reach a site that talks about "Source Code" (programming), I will enter, but I'll probably bounce within 15 seconds or less.

What is the topic of your site? If you write about different topics, it's possible that your users liked the content they were looking for but weren't interested in anything else in your site.

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My topic is Science and I write original articles with descriptive titles. I use linkdex.com SEO tools to make sure that I do not miss basic SEO and content relevancy. But bounce rate is what that bothers me and for a very long time. My site is just above 2 months old or even less probably. –  Sam Jun 27 '11 at 13:38

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