So, you have made a world class website. It has all the jazzy images, videos, flash and outstanding content quality which the SEO gurus talk about. In addition to it, your SEO team has worked its ass off to get you in the top 10 results for most of your keywords. And that’s where the good news ends. Why? – Because you aren’t able to do much with the traffic that is coming your way. You are still stuck in the same revenue figures as you were before. The page views have increased. The unique visitor count has increased. Still your queries haven’t increased. Your sales haven’t increased. Your subscriptions or sign ups haven’t gone up. Wondering why? That is because all the traffic being generated is getting bounced. It’s coming your way and getting wasted.
Technically a bounce occurs when a website visitor only views a single page on a website, that is, the visitor leaves a site without visiting any other pages. Why does that happen? What is it, which prompts a visitor to click on that dreaded “back” button? Why doesn’t a visitor feel like interacting with your site and goes back to search results. Let’s try and examine it.
Whenever a user searches for a term, he has a question in mind. The moment he begins to type in a query he also starts having some expectations out of the search results. When he looks at the results, that further increases his expectation of moving towards his answer. That’s where his mind starts working 10 times faster. He starts pondering over few important questions. As per the experts – “These questions are not all related to their initial search query; they are related to the quality of your website and a searcher’s ability to extract information from the webpage”.
Let’s try and understand what goes inside the mind of a searcher the moment he clicks on a search result and lands on your page. What kind of questions his mind asks?
Question No. 1 – Have I landed On the Correct Page? Is this the page, I was promised to see? Have I been directed to the desired information page? They will look at your page for a second to two to judge if they have landed on the correct page.
Question No. 2 – Is This What I Expected? When they click on a search result they have certain expectations out of that page. The first thing that your page is expected to do – is to impress them. Show them what they want to see i.e. what they came to see, which depends on what kind of expectation you created with your title tag or description. Meet those expectations. Come what may, impress your visitors, either with layout/ images/content or all. Make no mistake; you have no more than 4 seconds to do that. Sometimes just 2 seconds. Make sure your page gets loaded before they yawn and decide to hit the back button.
Question No. 3 – Is This Site Trustworthy? A searcher need to know that whatever information you have provided is accurate, up to date and not any marketing gimmick. It needs to know how trust worthy your site is. Can they trust you to click on links provided on your site? Would they lead them to safe and more informational pages or would they install a malware on their system.
Question No. 4 – Where is My Answer and What am I Expected To Do? The searcher came looking for an answer. Your search result snippet said, you will give that answer. Either the answer is straight forward, right there on the page or you make them work for it like fill a query form or sign up for a subscription or download a copy etc. The searcher has an inbuilt reluctance to work for his answer. He will work for it only if your content is compelling enough and make him believe it is something worth the effort. In addition to it, many a times, a searcher may be willing to work, they need to know how long will that process take and how soon can they reach out to the solution for their original search. Specify the process. Keep is small, simple and quick. Focus only on grabbing vital information. Use that to build a relationship and use to convert a visitor as your customer. For obvious reasons, a website which gives straight forward accurate, high quality answers will have more returning visitors, more shares, more likes, than the one which make them work.
If you are able to satisfy your visitor on all four counts, you will not only lower your bounce rate , infact you will also improve your engagement time and eventually the conversions. Looking forward to your views on the same