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In the SEO (search engine optimisation) circles it’s common to think that if your website has a high bounce rate, the overall conversions on your site will also be poor. The bounce rate of your website and individual website is also a ranking factor determining the user experience of your website, but does it really tell you if the user has found what they are looking for and is pleased?

What is “bounce rate”? It’s the amount of visitors that arrives on your website and leaves without clicking on any other link on your website to browse to another page. It basically means a user has left on the page that they landed on. For ecommerce enabled websites the bounce rates are usually between 20-40% and informational websites 50%. Blogs hover around the 70-80% mark.

If your website has a high bounce rate, it doesn’t necessarily mean that your visitors are not happy with what they have found on your website. It might be that they have found exactly what they were looking for and they don’t have to browse deeper in your website or click through to the contact page because your contact details are prominently displayed on every page.

Blogs overall tend to have a higher bounce rate and this could be the case that the user has found the right information they have been looking for and they don’t have to look further.

If you have a high bounce rate, it could also be because your content is linking and directing your visitors to an external websites or your conversion sales funnel is connected to a 3rd party service such as Mailchimp.

To get past this by only looking at the bounce rate to determine the success of your website, rather look at the time spent on the pages/website to give you a good indication if the user has found what they are looking for. If your blog has a high bounce rate on the posts, but your visitors are spending a couple of minutes overall on the page they landed on, this isn’t a bad sign, because it shows that you have given them what they are looking for.