My web designer recently told me that I need to be careful not to Google for my business' website, click on its search result link, then quickly close the page (or click back) too many times.

He says "Google knows" that I didn't stay on the page, and could penalize my site for having a high bounce rate if it happens too much.

Apparently, it could look like the behavior of a visitor who was not interested in what they found (hence the supposed detrimental effect on the site's search ranking).

This sounds hard to believe to me because I would not have thought any information is transmitted which tells Google (or anyone, for that matter) whether or not a website is still open in a browser (in my case Firefox v25.0).

Could there possibly be any truth to this?

If not, why might he have come to this conclusion? Is there some click-tracking or similar technology employed by search engines which does something similar?

Looking forward to hearing everyone's thoughts.


4 Answers 4


Google does not use bounce rates in their Algorithm. However, they do use loading time. Many bounce attacks may simply slow down page loading speeds.

Try this link for more info. http://productforums.google.com/forum/#!topic/webmasters/ftyHR0e5HqM


It's my understanding that Google does use bounce rate as a ranking factor.

They wouldn't exactly know that you had closed the window, but they know if someone searches, clicks a link, visits a site, comes right back and continues the same search then goes to a different site.

However, this is not worth worrying about; if your traffic is so low that your own visits would significantly affect your bounce rate than you have much bigger problems to worry about.


Not directly but yes in a way. If a bounce rate is so high Google will consider your site does not have intended materiel for visitor. This is not good for your website reputation. If too many people visit your website through referral links and divert within seconds then bounce rate will high and google will suspect link backs. Then scrutiny will be tight. So try to put genuine content, unique in nature and informative and something which is related to your business.


It is my understanding that the bounce rate is not considered in Google's ranking algorithm. The case may be that it is in a sites nature to aim to have a high bounce rate (let me explain). A site such as Wikipedia for example might want to have all the information that one would need displayed in a easy to find manner. That said, if someone searched 'what is the capital of U.S.A.?' and Wikipedia immediately stated the answer, the user will just as quickly back out of the page, with minimal time on the site, despite getting exactly what they wanted.

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