Bounce Rate: What Is It And How To Improve?

December 18, 2023 | Advanced SEO

You often land on a web page from the search engine results pages and leave the page quickly without performing any action.

It is fine for you as the SERP offers many other relevant pages to satisfy your search intent. You can simply choose another web page from those options.

But, the scenario is just the opposite for the website on which you landed and left immediately.

It increases the bounce rate of the website, which deeply hurts its SEO. 

Yes, that’s what we are going to talk about today: Bounce Rates.

You will know all about bounce rates and how to lower your website bounce rate by the time you finish this article.

What Is A Bounce Rate?

Bounce Rate

The percentage of visitors who view only a single web page of a website and then leave without performing any actions like clicking a link, filling up a form, or buying a product measures the bounce rate.

A higher bounce rate indicates to search engines that your web page content is not engaging and does not provide valuable information to visitors.

That can deeply hamper your rankings. Hence, you must ensure a low bounce rate.

Why Is Bounce Rate Vital For SEO?

If you are worried about your high bounce rate because it can affect your rankings, then you need not be.

Google does not consider bounce rate as a direct ranking factor for the following reasons,

  1. Bounce rate cannot accurately measure a website’s quality.
  2. Every website does not use bounce rate in Google Analytics.
  3. Google confirmed that they do not use Google Analytics data in its ranking algorithm.

But hold on!

How important are bounce rates for SEO?

Bounce rate still plays a vital role in SEO due to the following facts,

  1. If visitors bounce back from your website, chances are zero that they can convert. Hence, a higher bounce rate significantly decreases your conversion rate.
  2. A higher bounce rate indicates your other SEO weaknesses, like slow page loading speed, poor content, unsatisfactory user experience, poor mobile optimization, etc.

And we know that you care about your website’s conversions and SEO weaknesses.

How Is Bounce Rate Calculated?

How to calculate bounce rate?

Bounce rate is measured by dividing the number of visitors who visit only a single web page by the total number of visitors. You will get the bounce rate percentage if you multiply that fraction by 100.

Suppose two visitors visit only a single web page, and there are a total of five visitors. Then your bounce rate is (? x 100 %), i.e. 40%.

What Is The Average Bounce Rate?

Generally speaking, the average bounce rate ranges between 41%-51%, as per the study.

Average bounce rate

But the fact is the average bounce rate widely varies depending on the industry.

Average bounce rate differs between website categories

For example, a bounce rate above 55% is considered high for lead generation websites, whereas the bounce rate is considered high if it is more than 90% for landing pages.

What Is A Good Bounce Rate?

As we explained above, there is no fixed number for the bounce rate that fits all. It depends on which industry your website belongs to.

Another factor that can drastically vary your average bounce rate is the source of your website traffic.

Average bounce rates by traffic source

Hence, there is no fixed answer to the question ‘What is a good bounce rate?’.

However, you can check the following to assess your website bounce rate,

  1. Where does your website bounce rate stand compared to your industry benchmarks?
  2. Compare the bounce rate of your different web pages.
  3. Compare the bounce rate of your various ongoing campaigns.
  4. Monitor the change in your bounce rates over time.

However, many get confused between exit and bounce rates due to their similarity. But they are different.

Exit Rate vs Bounce Rate

Bounce Rate vs Exit Rate

Suppose a searcher visits one of your blog pages, clicks on an internal link in the blog content and lands on another blog page. Then, after reading that second blog, it closes the browser.

That is not considered a bounce. 

However, as the visitor exits your website from the second blog page, the exit rate of that particular blog page will increase.

On the other hand, if a searcher lands on one of your blog pages and closes the browser after a few moments without taking any actions, it will increase the bounce rate of that blog page.

To make it simpler, all bounces are exits, but all exits are not bounces.

Bounce Rate In Google Analytics

Google Analytics presently offers two data collection technologies: Universal Analytics (UA) and Google Analytics 4 (GA4).

GA4 has replaced UA, and Google will stop providing access to the UA interface in July 2024.

GA4 has replaced UA

However, many websites still need to migrate to GA4 and prefer using UA while calculating their bounce rate using Google Analytics.

GA4 and UA measure website bounce rates considering different user engagement metrics. 

Google Analytics Bounce Rate In UA

UA defines bounce rate as “Bounce rate is single-page sessions divided by all sessions or the percentage of all sessions on your site in which users viewed only a single page and triggered only a single request to the Analytics server.”

Definition of bounce rate by Google UA

If a searcher visits one of your web pages, goes through your content for some time, and then leaves the page without taking action, Universal Analytics will consider the page session a bounce.

The UA dashboard displays the bounce rate metric in the following way,

Bounce rate metric in UA dashboard

Google Analytics Bounce Rate In GA4

Google Analytics 4 defines bounce rate as “The bounce rate is the percentage of sessions that were not engaged.”

Definition of bounce rate by Google GA4

GA4 considers a page session as an engaged session if any of the following criteria are met,

  1. The duration of the searcher’s visit to your web page is 10 seconds or more.
  2. The searcher takes one or more conversion actions during the session.
  3. The searcher visits two or more web pages on your site.

The GA4 dashboard displays the bounce rate metric in the following way,

Bounce rate metric in GA4 dashboard

How To Lower Website Bounce Rate?

We will discuss the six most effective ways to boost user engagement and lower your website bounce rate in this section,

Ensure A Faster Page Loading Speed

If your web pages take longer to load, searchers will not think twice about leaving your pages, which can drastically increase your bounce rate.

Google studied 11 million landing pages and confirmed that a slow page loading time can dramatically increase the bounce rate of your website.

Google’s study on increase in bounce rate due to slow page loading speed

Hence, it is essential to identify your web pages with slow page response times and work on them to lower your website bounce rate.

The RankWatch site auditor can make this task a breeze.

RankWatch site auditor

The tool shows the web page URLs having a slow page response time. You must rework them and improve your page loading speed.

Page response time distribution in RankWatch website auditor

You must also ensure that your web pages are within the permissible size limit for faster page loading time.

As per Google, ‘less is more’.

Google on page sizes

You can check your web page’s size using the RankWatch web page size checker tool.

RankWatch website page size checker tool

Optimize For Mobile Friendliness

Studies show that over half of the worldwide web traffic comes from mobile devices.

Share of mobile traffic

Moreover, while indexing and ranking, Google prioritizes mobile versions of web pages over desktop versions.

Hence, you must make your website mobile-friendly to ensure a lower bounce rate.

You must ensure that your web pages offer user-friendly navigation, clear fonts, and fast-loading images on mobile devices.

RankWatch mobile friendly checker tool

It would help if you chose a reliable tool like the RankWatch mobile friendliness checker for checking the mobile responsiveness of your web pages. 

Add Internal Links

An effective way of keeping your visitors hooked on your web page content is to add relevant internal links that will take them to your other pages.

That works well with blog posts, primarily.

Like we did just now with the anchor text ‘internal links’ above.

Internal link

Linking related posts to your blogs is beneficial in both ways.

  1. It provides an opportunity for readers to gather more in-depth information.
  2. It helps you reduce your website bounce rate.

Another effective way to keep engaging your readers is to provide a ‘Related Posts’ section at the end of each blog post.

‘Related Posts’ section at the end of the blog post.

Prioritize User’s Search Intent

Users type search queries as per the intent of their searches.

The prime goal of any search engine is to provide the most relevant results to the users matching their queries.

Most users type just the exact term they are looking for in their search queries, and only a few provide detailed search queries in search engines.

Curating content targeting those terms frequently used in search queries is essential. Those are effective organic and long-tail keywords.

You need to choose the best free keyword research tool to provide you with the most relevant organic and long-form keywords.

RankWatch keyword research tool

The RankWatch keyword research tool provides thousands of relevant organic and long-tail keywords in the blink of an eye, along with their search volume, cost per click, and competition.

Keyword suggestions in RankWatch keyword research tool

Once you finish developing your content targeting the suggested keywords, you can test your content using the RankWatch SEO IQ feature.

RankWatch SEO IQ content improvement ideas

The tool shows the usage of the main keyword in your content and suggests if any further action is required.

Make Your Content Easily Skimmable

Users only perform a search query when they do not know about it. That means they are in a hurry and looking for a fast solution.

They will bounce if your web page content can’t convince them quickly that this is what they were looking for.

Following are the best ways to make your content easily skimmable for your readers.

Create Easily Skimmable Web Page Layout 

It is essential to make your web page layout easily skimmable. That will attract readers even before going into depth about your content.

Easily skimmable web page layout

You must also ensure that you provide breathing space for your content by including enough white space and breaking your paragraphs into small sentences & bullet points.

Easily skimmable web page content

Write A Crisp And Clear Heading

Please ensure the moment readers land on your web page, they get a distinct idea of what to expect from your post.

Descriptive H1 tag

The moment readers read the title, they understand that the web page content will offer the best e-commerce marketing strategies for 2023.

Including your exact seed keyword in the initial part of your main heading is a must. That makes your heading friendly both for users and SEO.

A reliable tool like the RankWatch on-page SEO checker helps you check the keyword usage in your headings.

RankWatch SEO IQ feature

RankWatch SEO IQ provides you with the details of the usage of exact keywords in your title and also suggests if it requires any further improvements.

RankWatch SEO IQ H1 recommendation

Break Your Content Into Subheadings

Breaking your content into subheadings helps readers understand your content section-wise by simply scrolling down the page before diving into the content.

HTML header tags hierarchy

They can even choose to go through a particular section under a specific subheader as per their exact requirements instead of reading the entire post.

The RankWatch on-page SEO checker can help you with that again.

RankWatch SEO IQ H2 recommendation

RankWatch SEO IQ suggests the changes your sub-headers require.


The main goal of every website is to make a place on the search engine results pages.

But, it would help if you remembered that the purpose of SERP is to satisfy users’ search intent. 

Hence, unless you create content to provide valuable information to your readers, chances are remote that your content will rank.

If users visit your web pages and find your content is useless, they will leave the pages immediately, boosting your website’s bounce rate.

And the users who bounce back from your site can never convert. That, in turn, will hamper your conversion rate.

Moreover, a higher bounce rate indicates to search engines that your content is not worth ranking. That can drastically reduce your SERP rankings.

Hence, you must lower your bounce rate by ensuring a fast page loading speed, optimizing your web pages for mobile devices, using relevant internal links within your blog content, and creating easily skimmable high-quality content targeting the right keywords for your audiences.

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