The bounce rate. It’s one of those analytic statistics that businesses usually fail to understand. It’s also one of those statistics that interactive professionals like to skip over.
After all, if an advertisement is getting a remarkable click-through rate, who cares how many of those visitors bounce?
The bounce rate gets a lot of definitions. The easiest I’ve ever heard comes from Avinash Kaushik, a dynamic speaker and web analytics pro who defined bounce rate very simply:
“They came. They puked. They left.”
In other words, a visitor to the website isn’t finding what he or she needs or wants and leaves without engaging in any way. No clicks, no hovers.
To more accurately reflect engaging visitors, I reduce the visits by the percentage of the bounce rate. So if the website generates 100,000 visits and there’s a 53 percent bounce rate, that means only 47,000 visitors actually engaged in your website.
Why does this matter?
So imagine this: As a marketing professional, you begin working on reducing the bounce rate and increasing the engagement level of visitors. You’re successful in this endeavor. More than likely, the initial efforts will result in a reduction in visits. If reports only show the traditional results, one month with 100,000 visits and the next with 93,500 might reflect badly on you.
However, if the bounce rate also changed from 53 percent to 46 percent, the engaging visits actually increased from 47,000 to 50,490 — almost 7½ percent more visits.