A couple of seconds.
That’s all the time you have to make a first impression before your readers decide to stay or leave.
Potentially affecting your content’s discoverability within search engines.
This is why leaving your readers hooked is crucial in improving your bounce rate.
Wondering how to improve bounce rate?
Let’s take a look at these strategies.
Table of contents: How To Improve Bounce Rate: 12 Best Tips
- What is bounce rate?
- Strategies on how to improve your bounce rate
- It all starts at the headline
- Use a lightweight WordPress theme
- Quality content is key
- Annihilate your readers’ questions at an instant
- Promptly present your value proposition
- Internally link to other pages
- Externally link to other sites cautiously
- Optimize for responsiveness
- Create irresistible calls-to-action
- Content above the fold is crucial
- Use headings effectively
- Content length matters
- User-centered design matters
- Final thoughts on how to improve bounce rate
What is bounce rate?
Bounce rate is a metric used to analyze the percentage of single-page sessions of your visitors.
For example, when a visitor enters your website without navigating other internal pages.
Strategies on how to improve your bounce rate
1. It all starts at the headline
Your headline is the most important key to any element in copy that sells. A strong headline acts as bait to tempt readers to click on what your content is all about.
If your headline is relevant to your reader’s interests, you have done half of the work in bringing your readers in. What’s left of the equation is high-quality content to leave your readers engaged.
Look at your headline as a link between the reader’s interests and your solution for them.
2. Use a lightweight WordPress theme
The theme you use for your website matters. And not all themes are the same.
A theme convoluted with unnecessary components slows down the framework. Thus, website loading time has a direct correlation to visitors leaving at an instant.
There are many beautiful themes out in the market that people are using for their website. And the majority of those themes contain things you don’t need that slow your website down.
So you may want to rethink if choosing that theme with the beautiful designs is worth it.
Choosing a lightweight theme for your WordPress website ensures fast loading times. Helping the chances of keeping your visitors on your page longer as possible.
ScribPress runs on the lightweight WordPress theme using GeneratePress.
What’s great is GeneratePress is free!
The free version has all the necessary features you need to build a standard website. Whereas the premium version unlocks more lightweight features.
- It’s a lightning-fast theme to improve bounce rate.
- It’s extremely affordable.
- Over 1 million websites have the theme installed.
3. Quality content is key
One reason visitors leave your website is because your content doesn’t rub them the right way.
Quality copy is content that successfully achieves goals. Those goals lower bounce rates, drive user engagement, increase rankings, convert readers, and solve your user’s needs.
Imagine running a blog and you add content for the sake of having content. You need to have high-quality content that adds value to your visitors. You don’t add content because it looks pretty or sounds good. Or because you don’t know what else to add to fill in the gap.
You want quality content that performs to achieve getting your readers to the other side.
Word after word…
Sentence after sentence…
All the way to the end until your audience attains what they seek.
Because quality content is defined by its performance and success.
Factors that contribute to your content’s performance and success are:
If your content isn’t providing value to readers, why is it worth your readers’ time?
The best content is content that provides value. It takes into consideration your reader’s needs, problems, wants. And it gives your readers a solution they seek.
To write valuable content, consider:
- Who is my audience?
- What are their problems?
- What’s my solution to their problems?
- How does my solution benefit readers?
- What’s unique about my solution compared to other solutions?
Original content provides insight into unique information your readers have never seen before. This includes content that is not plagiarized. When search engines crawl your page and see duplicate content that sounds familiar, they will place less importance on it. This results to lower rankings and discoverability.
Let’s face it, relevant content is more likely to be read, as opposed to information that pertains to the past.
This also applies to content that is not regularly updated.
Content that is worthy if it resonates with your readers, which leads to more views and increased page times.
Quality content isn’t worthy if it can’t be found.
Content leaves a lasting impression when your readers gain takeaways.
If your content isn’t readable, your visitors will quickly run to the exit door. Elements that affect readability involve typography, color contrast, character lengths, paragraph lengths, to the overall visual aesthetics. See readability as the ability for your readers to quickly comprehend your content.
Find out what makes your users tick by implementing copywriting psychology. Humans act on emotions to prompt them to take action. Copywriting is an art and a science. Thus, writers must optimize copy in provoking readers in making their next action
Research and speak your audience’s language
Content can’t resonate with your readers if you don’t write in the language they speak. Knowing who you are writing for builds the foundation to get your message across to your readers. Understand your readers through comprehensive research.
Your research about your audience should include topics about:
- Your reader’s needs, desires, and goals.
- The problems and pain points your readers are experiencing.
- A viable solution.
- How your solution will benefit your readers.
4. Annihilate your readers’ questions at an instant
The first thing your readers do is determine if they are on the right page. If what they see is relevant, eye-catching, and valuable, then they will stay.
More than likely, your readers are on your page because they seek answers to their curiosity.
5. Promptly present your value proposition
In a sea of competition, there are tons of others who do the same thing as you do. This is why you have to establish what sets you apart from others.
You could have the best product in the world. But, if you don’t give your readers the reasons why you’re valuable, why should they stay on your page?
6. Internally link to other pages
Internal linking is adding hyperlinks that direct to another page within your website. The objective is to have readers stay on your site.
Your internal links need to be relevant to the context of the page you are linking from. Linking to content that is irrelevant increases the chances of your visitor exiting your page because it serves no purpose.
Remember, your users are searching for one thing. Distracting them won’t help.
Bonus tip: Make your links prominent. How can your readers click your links if they don’t see them? Your links won’t be clicked if they blend in with the rest of your copy. Make your links are distinguishable either by being a different color or are underlined.
7. Externally link to other sites cautiously
Similarly to internal linking, your external links that direct to other websites need to stay relevant. Use external links in moderation because the goal is to keep you
The less external links, the higher the chance of your bounce rate staying low.
Bonus tip: Make sure your external links open in a new window. You risk your readers never coming back if the hyperlink does not open in a new tab or window.
Imagine being sidetracked in your train of comprehending information when your window closes. This frustrating to your readers and it’s called back button fatigue when your readers have to click back. It results in your readers exiting your page and increasing your bounce rate.
The goal is to have your readers on your page for as long as possible.
8. Optimize for responsiveness
What good is your beautiful website with high-converting content if it can’t be accessed across various devices? Imagine entering a website on your smartphone and your content overlaps everything, rendering nothing readable. You would likely leave at an instant. Your website needs to be designed to be responsive to devices other than a traditional computer screen.
In the mobile-driven age we live in, almost everyone has a smart device with them.
In fact, search engines like Google account for mobile-friendliness as a ranking factor for your content to be discoverable. You can analyze your URL’s mobile-friendliness using free tools like Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test.
9. Create irresistible calls-to-action
Your calls-to-action is what leads your readers down your sales funnel process. In short, it’s what keeps them engaged. The goal is to have your readers go from hoop to the next in growing their interest.
An effective call-to-action prompts your readers to take action such as:
- Performing a purchase
- Submitting a contact form
- Navigating to another page
- Downloading a file
- Booking an appointment
- Subscribing to an email list
An effective call-to-action method to evoke emotion and action from your readers is creating a sense of urgency through power words.
Instill these urgency power words or phrases in your calls-to-action:
|Buy Now||Shop Now||Learn More|
|Get Started||Join||Book Now|
|Gain Now||Start||Activate Today|
|Add To Wishlist||Add To Cart||Get Your Free|
|Reserve Your Spot||Sign Up Free||View Demo|
|Get X% Off||Try For Free||Save|
10. Content above the fold is crucial
Where your content resides on your website is crucial.
Ask yourself, what are the first things your readers see when they land on your page?
That’s exactly what “above the fold” refers to. The visible portion of the page presented to your readers without them having to scroll or navigate.
This is where they make the judgment to leave or stay.
The goal of putting content in this area is to give one less reason to your readers to not leave.
11. Use headings effectively
Headings not only organize your content for search engines to crawl, but they also establish a structure for your readers. Imagine, entering a page with overwhelming lines of text you likely won’t read because it’s visually challenging to bear.
Headings help your readers scan your content in helping them find what they seek.
To create effective headings, structure your HTML header tags by importance.
- h1: your primary heading with a dominant typeface and larger size font.
- h2-h6: less dominant, secondary typeface, and smaller size font.
12. Content length matters
Think about it.
The longer your content, the stronger the correlation of your visitors staying longer on your page.
Imagine searching for a topic you need help to fix a problem of yours. And the length of the article is only 400 words. More than likely you will leave within seconds after skimming for your answer.
Think about the value you’re providing with long-form content. More words = more value, less words = less value.
Also, be wary of adding unnecessary words for the sake of having more words. Make sure to get straight to the point, as your readers won’t appreciate you wasting their time.
13. User-centered design matters
Your website’s visitors will leave when it’s not optimized for usability.
User-centered design is a design methodology that focuses on your user’s needs and goals.
What good is a page that can’t provide what your user seeks in the most efficient manner?
Good copywriting works in harmony with effective user-centered design in keeping your readers longer on the page.
To implement an effective user-centered design, these are the areas your website need to focus on:
In design, more does not necessarily equate to better. There is such thing as over designing, leading to confused visitors. Sometimes less is more, as long as you find the balance in what works for your visitors. If executed correctly, clean and minimal design can appeal to the eyes, but help your users find what they seek. By keeping your website design simple, you will ensure positive user experience.
Is your website accessible to all platforms and devices? What about your website being viewed by a user who is visually impaired? Make sure your website is accessible to all users.
How well can your text be comprehended by readers? Are you using technical jargon or complicated terms that confuse your readers? Poor readability is why users leave instantly.
Does your intended value resonate with your reader’s values? This is where researching your customers and understanding their pain points and needs matter.
By arranging your content based on the significance of content, allows your readers to gravitate to what matters most.
When all design elements behave in uniform, your users can predict what happens next. Inconsistency leaves your users doubtful. Create a palette with an established sense of uniformity of your typeface, color, font, and spacing guidelines.
Visitors stay longer on websites with easy navigation that is obvious to use.
Is your design something unfamiliar your users have never seen? If so, this leaves your visitors having to predict what will happen.
You could have the best content or design, but your typography is what matters more. Have you ever been to a website and encountered typography that is unreadable? Not only can unreadable text strain your user’s eyes, but they are also more likely to leave in a heartbeat. Consider typography and font color contrast that is easy on the eyes.
- Mobile compatibility
In the growing digital world we live in, almost everyone has a smart device. Forecasts predict by 2025, over 70% of the world will access the web with only their smartphones. That’s over 3.7 billion people. This means your theme and layout need to be responsive to all types of screens in reaching your audience.
Your bounce rate is more than just your compelling copy or product. And, user-centered design is an integral part of retaining visitors from leaving.
After all, copywriting is a form of communication focused on your readers.
Well… so is design.
Thus, all elements need to focus on your visitors in ensuring a positive user experience.
Final thoughts on how to improve bounce rate
When writing your copy, set the goal of engaging with your users.
It’s what keeps them on your page longer and lowers your bounce rate.
Remember, you only have a couple of seconds to establish your first impression.