June 2, 2022 – 10 minute read
How to Prevent Unnecessary Bounces & Exits
What exactly is a site bounce and how is it different than a site exit? A bounce is recorded when a user enters your site and leaves without an interaction on your page. Note: bounces can still happen even if a user reads your content. Even if users are spending minutes of their time reading a page, this is recorded as a bounce if they don’t interact with it. Meanwhile, an exit is recorded for the last page in every visitor’s session.
It is important to note:
Bounce = Exit
Exit ≠ Bounce
Exits can be a normal and desired outcome depending on the context of the page. For example, normal exits take place after the completion of an activity. This could mean a user has filled out and submitted a contact form, quote request, or received an order confirmation after placing an order. Once they’ve successfully finished their activity, they will exit the page.
Bad exits occur at the start or middle of an activity. This could mean leaving a category or product page without continuing to add to cart, leaving the cart and checkout pages without placing an order, or leaving your site without any interaction at all (a bounce).
Bounces can be prevented by guiding users into a conversion funnel. This means encouraging users to act when they visit your site. You may have extremely valuable content and information presented, but remember, bounces can still happen even if users read the entire page when they don’t interact with it. Make sure that your landing pages have conversion funnel entry points incorporated throughout the content.
Here are a few examples of actions you can take to reduce bounces:
1. Include catalog entry points on content pages.
- Showcase product and category links within longform content such as blog articles, educational pieces, and recipe pages to keep users engaged with your site and encourage transactions.
2. Make calls to action immediately available on page load.
- Whether your landing page is meant to capture leads or drive transactions, users should be able to find out what to do and how to do it without having to search for it.
3. Have good content.
- This may seem obvious, but quality, well-organized content is the most important factor in grabbing a user’s attention. Page content should meet users’ expectations on page load, answer their questions as they move down the page, and provide relevant next steps to keep them engaged.
In addition, removing unnecessary barriers is key to preventing bad exits. Avoid making site goals hard for the user to complete. Whenever users become frustrated throughout their buying journey, there is a high chance for them to leave and go to another competitor.
Here are a few examples of actions you can take to reduce bad exits:
1. Simplify the checkout process.
- Consider one-page and one-click checkout options. Integrate with widely used payment methods such as PayPal, Google Pay, and Apple Pay. If possible, allow for guest checkout or the ability to create an account post-checkout.
2. Have multiple browsing pathways with accurate search and filtering.
- Don’t make it complicated for users to find your products. If users need to spend more time than they can tolerate trying to get what they need, they will take their money elsewhere.
3. Optimize for mobile.
- Mobile shopping behaviors continue to be on the rise year after year. Make it easy for users to buy your products on their preferred devices wherever they are.