5 Website Fixes That Will Decrease Your Bounce Rate


There are countless ways to drive traffic to your website and engage an audience.

We're not going to focus on those today.

Before you focus on all of the ways to bring in more traffic you need to make sure that you're not scaring those people away.

There are 5 all too common website mistakes that everyone hates!



How to lower your bounce rate


1. Intrusive Pop Ups

I've personally used pop ups on websites I own to increase conversions close to 200%. It works, but it's something that annoys the hell out of me when I'm browsing.

For that reason alone it took me a long time to come around.

A case study by Nicki Mcgonigal showed that pop ups increased opt ins 1,375% over an 8 month period when compared to a static sidebar form. To accomplish this she used the default light box form on AWeber.


AWever light box form


So how do we implement pop ups to increase conversions while not scaring away visitors?

  • Don't use them excessively (a single pop up set to only appear once per visitor will do fine).
  • Use targeted material - only approach people with material they are likely to be interested in.
  • Set a timer. Delayed pop ups give your visitor time to digest the material on your site.
  • Analyze your data - use trial and error to fine tune the results of your pop up campaign.

Using a pop up is like closing a sale, don't ignore the process leading up to the close. Click To Tweet

If you don't present yourself in the right manner and qualify your audience, you're not going to make many sales. There's a delicate closing process in sales that must be followed to get the desired outcome.

The same logic can be applied to pop ups. If applied correctly, they can have a tremendous impact on conversions.



2. Broken Links

Links are the bread and butter of blogging, they allow you to source endless information from other sites.

Broken links show your visitors that you don't care.

Its a clear sign that your website is outdated and not well maintained.

You might as well be posting a closed sign.

Broken links increase bounce rate

Fortunately, there are tools for monitoring the links on our sites. Broken Link Checker is a WordPress plugin that does exactly that. It's a great way to simplify a potentially tedious process.

3. Slow Load Speed

First impressions matter. In order to make a solid first impression you need to present yourself in the appropriate manner.

A slow loading web page is like the guy who's late to every meeting. Click To Tweet

You kill all hope of making a good impression.

According to a case study conducted by KissMetrics, 40% of users abandon a website that takes over 3 seconds to load.

bounce rate due to page load speed

That's nearly half of your audience leaving before you have a chance to present anything of value to them!

You can use a free website speed test from UpTrends to monitor your load speed.



4. Poorly Formatted Content

Content is king.

And well designed content is going to have a much longer stay on the throne.

There are quite a few steps you can take to build epic content that keeps visitors engaged.

They key to highly effective content is formatting.

Well designed content

There are a lot of factors that go into formatting a blog post. If you're serious about blogging you should study all of them. Here are a few things to think about:

  • Catchy Title
  • Title Length
  • Breaking up content (sub headings, bullet points, numbers)
  • Images
  • Outbound links
  • Content Length

There's a great post from BufferApp that dives into the details of content and format of the perfect blog post, I highly recommend checking it out.



5. Outdated/Bad Web Design

Sorry folks, but looks do matter.

First impressions are very important, and the overall look and feel of your website goes a long way to making a good one.

If you design a functional, easy to use and attractive website people are more likely to trust you as a source.

Looks aside, simplicity and accessibility of important tools/info/resources are very important.

Here's a look at an award winning, beautifully designed website that educates people on the history of climate change:

attractive web design lowers bounce rate


The music, design and illustrations come together to tell a story that captures your attention. Let's take a look at the metrics brought to us by Alexa:

Ok, so it's nothing to write home about. That's because a majority of visitors come to this site are running searches for "ice and sky" - something that's not necessarily related to climate change.

For the visitor that is actually curious about climate change, this is an awesome resource.

So how do we keep pace with an ever changing environment of web design?

If you use WordPress to build out your websites (over 25% of websites do) you can use this tick to ensure the longevity of your theme:

1. Choose a theme that very simple and easy to use. There are tons of plugins to improve your theme's look and feel. Overly complicated themes become outdated and distract visitors

2. Look for a high number of positive reviews on a theme. If a lot of people are using a theme and upgrading to premium it's creators are more likely to continue to push updates well into the future.


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