This post is a triumphant return to my How To style of blog posts. Along the same vein of bounce rate talk as yesterday’s post on why your website needs a primary purpose, I’m going to take you through how to check some of your bounce rate vitals in Google Analytics.
You are using Google Analytics, right?
Bounce Rates On Your Dashboard
The default view on your dashboard if you haven’t customized it too much will include a little panel showing some of your overall vitals. A little something like this:
This particular statistic is your averaged site wide bounce rate. It actually means less than you think, let’s dig a little deeper.
Finding Out Which Sites Send Visitors That Click Around
The next most important page you’ll want to check is your traffic sources page (All Traffic Sources) which will provide you with a table of all your traffic sources (the websites that send you people). By default this page shows you the total number of visitors per site sorted by visitor.
What we want to do is sort by bounce rate which will give us a much more meaningful statistic to work with. Clicking on the heading for bounce rate will allow you to change between ascending or descending order.
What you then want to do is find the best traffic sources – the ones that offer you the least bounces for the most traffic.
Scroll down the page to find those sites that send you simply great traffic. I have a few that send me traffic that click around, spend time reading my articles, and subscribe to my stuff. Those are the sites I want to work with and comment on the most.
The Weekly Bounce Rate Breakdown
Over time you’ll notice that your traffic will ebb and flow. Mine fluctuates weekly and depending on what niche you’re writing in, and when your visitors get the most time you’ll find yours does have some form of fluctuation.
To view which days offer the best change of getting visitors with time on their hands to have a look around your site check out the Bounce Rate page found under Visitors -> Visitor Trending. It will give you a breakdown of visitors over time and you can adjust the period as normal to get snapshots of weeks or days at a time.
More Bounce Rate Info To Be Found
There’s loads of bounce rate material coming on Code My Own Road, so stay tuned. This is a topic that we’re going to go deep on.
Google Analytics is seriously a must have tool for this kind of investigation. The WP-Stats plugin for WordPress is good, but it doesn’t give the extra detail you get from Google’s package. There’s heaps of plugins to help you install it in WordPress such as Ultimate GA, or Joost De Valk’s Google Analytics for WordPress (highly recommended).
Don’t forget to sign up for my newsletter because you’ll receive a free copy of my eBook on how to lower your website’s bounce rates. I take you through a case study of how I did it for one of my customers.
Go get control of those bounce rates, people!