Google Analytics users might already know what is "bounce rate". ÂIt is somewhat different from the "exit rate" which many web-masters get confused. According to Wikipedia, this is the definition of bounce rate.
Bounce rate (sometimes confused with exit rate) is an Internet marketing term used in web traffic analysis. It represents the percentage of visitors who enter the site and "bounce" (leave the site) rather than continue viewing other pages within the same site.
Bounce rate is a measure of the effectiveness of a website in encouraging visitors to continue with their visit. It is expressed as a percentage and represents the proportion of visits that end on the first page of the website that the visitor sees.
Quite contrary to belief, higher the bounce rate less likeable is your website. So it's always better to have a lower bounce rate and continue to put efforts in decreasing it to less than 60%. The above post in the article gave me much pleasure in writing as my bounce rate was considerably reduced and almost reached 0% at one-time.
Google also gives some guidelines on this bounce rate metric and the reasons for a high bounce rate. You may also be interested in reducing your bounce rate once you get an idea how it affects your website popularity.
But the core question is how bounce rate and google ranking are related? For majority of reasons many people think that once you decrease your bounce rate below the average metric of 60%, your site automatically starts ranking well in Google for different keywords.
But I'm going to walk you through a case-study which shows ample proof that bounce rate may not always have a positive affect on google rankings.
I'm taking the example of this very website to show my insight, thought and assumption regarding bounce rate and search engine rankings.
As you can see from the above screenshot, I listed my traffic from Jan 1, 2013 to July 22nd, 2014. I did a comparison of metrics - Sessions vs Bounce Rate. As you can see, my bounce rate almost came to 0% in Sep 2013, but the traffic didn't increase immediately following after that.
Even after 6 months, the traffic was less. If bounce rate affected Google rankings,then this screenshot should have been something different. Since traffic and rankings are inter-linked, we can say that bounce rate didn't have much affect on my website rankings in Google.
But after April 2014 the traffic increased which was totally due to a different reason. Then Penguin 4.0 and other updates were released, which had a positive influence on my website traffic.
Update: July 2014
I also forgot that I have some other good organicÂtraffic websites which can also be used for this case-study.
For my "Windows and Technology" blog, the bounce rate curve was flat from Jan 1, 2013 onwards. It was around 85% which was on the higher side. So you think that my site is un-popular? But this site gets 15000 sessions per month, several times higher than the current website.
Similarly, I have "Health Made Simple" blog, the bounce rate curve for which is also flat in the same duration. Though the bounce rate slightly decreased from 88% to 80% during Mar 2014, there was not significant increase in traffic.
So combining the above reasons, the conclusion I drawn on this post is purely for my personal nicheÂwebsites. If we can have data for several other web sites, than we can show how bounce rate percentage and Google rankings affect a particular website.
What did you observe from your bounce rates in Google Analytics? Do you agree with my assumption? Can you share your statistics with me? You can use my contact page to send a mail to add me to see your statistics and draw a bigger conclusion.