Why is the Bounce Rate so High on Your Landing Page?

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A landing page is the page on your site which people land on when they click on one of your paid ads – be they search ads, display ads, social ads, or others. And so, many marketers and the companies they represent expect that some percentage of people who land on those pages will end up leaving before the do anything else.

In analytics terms, we call that a bounce. And the page’s bounce rate is the percentage of visitors who expect your website before completing any additional action.

A high bounce rate is clearly not a good thing. But traditionally, marketers tend to be more tolerant of a high bounce rate on a landing page, where a visitor has come from an advertisement, than they would be on other pages of the site. And I am not here telling you that you should expect visitors you pay for to behave the same way as visitors who come to your site organically.

However, just because we expect higher bounce rates on our landing pages, doesn’t mean we should be okay with them. And it doesn’t mean we can’t work to lower them.

So make 2019 the year you refocus on landing pages, and cut those bounce rates in half.

How? Start by understanding why people are bouncing in the first place.

Here are five possible reasons:

  1. You are advertising to the wrong people.

  2. Your page doesn’t provide enough information.

  3. Your page is not optimized for mobile.

  4. You are not clear about what they should do next.

  5. You don’t give them any incentive to take action.

Let’s explore each of these possibilities and what you can do about them.

You are advertising to the wrong people.

If the wrong people are landing on the page, it’s no wonder that they are leaving. This may happen if your targeting is too broad, meaning that your ad is being shown to people who are not in the market for your offerings. It also can happen when you use the same landing page for multiple channels and audiences. It is a best practice to make sure your landing page is specific to each audience. To accomplish that, you may need to create multiple landing pages for each campaign.

Your page doesn’t provide enough information.

Many companies treat landing pages as teasers for a certain product or service. They provide just enough information to whet a customer’s appetite and get them to take the next step. But what you think is enough information to tease a product, may not answer the questions that most of your visitors have. And rather than take the required next step, they leave your site and go looking for alternative solutions.

Your page is not optimized for mobile.

We are living in a mobile-first world. More web activity is taking place on phones and tablets than ever before. And your landing pages absolutely must be geared toward the mobile visitor. This means focusing on load times, readability, and usability. Challenge your own perceptions of your landing pages by looking at the bounce rate for mobile users separate from desktop users. You may find that solving for mobile alone can cut your bounce rate in half.

You are not clear about what they should do next.

Some people will leave your site because they simply don’t know what else to do. A strong call-to-action is an important part of any landing page design. Once you have provided enough information to convince the visitor that they are in the right place, give them an action to take. It could be a phone call, a form to submit, a button to start the sales process, a web chat. And make it obvious. The more they have to search for it, the greater the likelihood that some will give up.

You don’t give them any incentive to take action.

Why do this now when I can do it later? That is the mentality of most consumers. It is up to you, as the marketer, to give them a reason to act now. Perhaps it’s the opportunity to claim a special offer, perhaps your offer is only good for a limited time, or perhaps they don’t want to have to wait in line. As a marketer, you are constantly fighting for attention. So don’t squander that attention when you get it by letting consumers leave without taking the next step.