If you’ve been blogging for a while, you might have heard the term “bounce rate” before. Your blog’s bounce rate is the percentage of visitors who check out your blog and then “bounce” rather than staying for a while and clicking on more posts. You can find out your blog’s bounce rate by viewing your stats on Google Analytics. The lower your bounce rate, the better. Why? A lower bounce rate means that when you get visitors to your blog, they are:
- Staying on your blog for longer
- Reading more on your content
- More likely to take action on your blog—such as subscribing to your email list or checking out a paid product that you offer
- More likely to come back to your blog
A “good” bounce rate is subjective, but a general rule of thumb is that you want your bounce rate to be lower than 70%. If you have currently have a high bounce rate, there are some easy tweaks you can make to your website to keep visitors clicking around for longer. Here are ten simple strategies you can implement immediately!
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1. Put Related Posts In The Article
Displaying related posts is a great way to encourage visitors to stay on your site and click through to your other blog posts. There are plenty of related posts widgets available for bloggers to install. Most of them display similar posts based on keywords at the bottom of the page. The problem with this is that not everyone is going to scroll all the way to the very end of your blog posts. That’s why it’s better to include related posts within your blog posts, where visitors are guaranteed to see them. My favorite way to do this is with the free Inline Related Posts WordPress plugin. It recommends some of your similar blog posts in line with the text of your post.
2. Always Interlink
Like displaying related posts, interlinking encourages visitors to stay on your blog and check out your other blog posts. Interlinking is simply linking to other blog posts you have written. You can go back to your old blog posts periodically and update them with links to related newer posts you have written as well. If I am reading a really great post and the blogger includes links to their other posts, I often find myself opening the links in new tabs to read after I finish the original post! This is also a great way to bring visitors to your older posts.
3. Add Popular Posts
Display your most popular or helpful blog posts in your sidebar. This will encourage readers to click around further on your blog and check out your top posts. The posts in your sidebar should be your cornerstone content, AKA the posts that really show off what your blog is about and provide value to your readers.
4. Put A “Start Here” Page
Adding a “Start Here” page to your blog in a prominent place (such as the top menu and sidebar) will help keep visitors on your page for longer by offering them a guided path of what to do on your blog. On the page, you can introduce yourself and give an overview of what your blog is about. Then you can direct readers towards your most popular posts, your service offerings, your paid product offerings, or your email opt-in. A “Start Here” page is a great asset for reducing your bounce rate because it draws visitors in and then gives them a map of what they should do on your blog.
5. Add Blog Categories
Including links to your blog’s different categories in a highly visible place, such as the top menu and sidebar, will help visitors navigate your page and find the exact content they want to read. The best places to include your blog categories are in the top menu and sidebar menu of your blog, right where people can see them.
6. User-Friendly Design
Having a professional, organized, and user-friendly design for your blog is critical to retaining visitors. Think about what you would do if you clicked on a website and were immediately overwhelmed with multiple pop-ups, a million ads, and a bright neon background and clashing font. You would probably close right out the page without hesitation. When it comes to your blog, simpler is better. This means lots of white space, no distracting fonts or colors, and minimal pop-ups and ads.
It also means having clear and intuitive navigation. Make sure that your blog’s top menu and sidebar menu contain links to all of the places you want visitors to go on your blog: Blog categories, you’re about me or “Start Here” page, your product or service offerings, your contact page, etc.
7. Write Quality Content
This might seem like a no-brainer, but having quality content on your blog will keep a visitor on your blog for much longer compared to a skim-worthy post filled with nothing but fluff.
Detailed, information-packed posts will entice visitors to stay on your blog for longer and click around to more posts. Posts that provide value such as how-to guides, list posts, and posts sharing tips or secrets are great ideas for quality contact that keeps people interested.
8. Have Easy-to-Read Content
As I just mentioned, it’s important to write quality, information-rich blog posts that provide value to your readers. Humans are visual creatures, and if they can’t scan your post for the main points, they’re more likely to click away from your blog without reading any other posts.
Some ways to make your content more readable are:
- Using subheadings to break down sections
- Keeping your paragraphs short (2-3 sentences)
- Using bulleted lists (like this!)
- Bolding important statements
Keeping your blog posts easy to read will encourage visitors to stick around and read more of your awesome posts.
9. Add A Search Bar
Search bars are small and often overlooked features, but they can help greatly in keeping visitors on your blog. Search bars allow visitors to search for specific topics and keywords on your blog. Similar to adding a blog categories menu, the best place to add a search bar is somewhere highly visible such as your top menu or sidebar.
10. Include a call to action
Finally, including a call to action in your blog posts can get your visitors clicking around and spending more time on your blog. A call to action can be anything that invites the reader to take some action on your blog: “Sign up for my email list to receive even more easy holiday recipes—I’ll send 20 straight to your inbox!” or “Check out my full guide to traveling South America on a budget for even more backpacker-friendly travel tips!” With a call to action, you can include one at the end of your blog posts, but you should also try to include one within the body of your blog post where relevant.
How do you keep visitors on your blog for longer? Have you tried and found success with any of these 10 tips yet?
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Coco Dale is a blogger who helps girls turn their blog into a business and chase their dreams. She writes about blogging, social media, and monetization strategies at BlogDarling!
very good tips. a few of them I can implement in my future posts or when I update my whole site. Thank you for sharing them!
Sam | Away She Went says
These are great tips! I need to update my popular posts/favorite posts section. I should do a better job categorizing my posts too.
Emily - The Southern Belle Blogs says
Great tips! I actually turned off the “related posts” feature on my blog for a while but when I really thought about it – I wondered if I had lost my mind!
Becky Hadaway says
I hate the “bounce rate.” Thanks for these great tips!
these are great tips. It took me a while to understand the value of keeping readers on your blog longer. I find that using lots of pictures can help with this as well. Especially for food posts.
Love the design of this blog! It’s beautiful!
Thanks for this! I’m interlinking, using CTAs and putting related posts at the bottom of my posts, but I’m still having a hard time keeping visitors moving throughout my blog. Maybe I’ll try the related posts plugin and add some widgets to my side bar. Thanks for the suggestions!
Latasha Peterson says
You’re so welcome!
These are some really good tips! I’m gonna try and use some of these for my own blog! Thanks! 🙂
I’m learning to include internal links in my posts; I have the search function; and I also have blog categories. I like to think my blog has easy to read quality content and a user friendly design. I’ll have to look into including the related posts function! Thanks for breaking down bounce rate…this post was super helpful!
Thank you for sharing these tips. My bounce rate is high at the moment, so I’ll definitely look into implementing these.
This is something I’m sort of struggling with right now and so I really appreciated all the ideas i can implement! Thanks x
Very good recommendations. I will try to implement as much of these as I can and hope for the best.
Ioanna | A Beauty Lover’s Stories
Great tips! I need to be better about using subheadings and bullet points.
Marcella Kenny says
This article gave me a better idea of my bounce rate I thought that was reader that bounce in and out by accident. I will have to pay closer attention to my bounce rate.
Great tips! I didn’t know about the related posts plugin, I was just putting them in manually. 🙂 I have to remind myself to do this on every post, though.
Vidya Tiru says
awesome tips.. and i know i can use them..thanks
Mariah Klee says
There are some great tips here that I hadn’t thought of yet! I recently changed my blog’s layout and template and noticed a decrease in bounce rate, and I think it may be due to the more user-friendly design and related posts slider!
Nadalie Bardowell says
Your info graphics are stunning, the colours all go so well with each other! It is very consistent. I like the idea of start here pages, especially when a blog has a lot to offer + needs to be easy to read!
Erica @ Coming up Roses says
Lovelovelove these tips! I’m a big fan of a “start here” page!
Doma- domalama.com says
Start here is a good option and having categories on the sidebar. I need to update those two on my blog. Thanks for sharing your tips.
Prosecco and Projects says
Thank you so much for the tips!!
kerri @ holly muffin says
This is SO what I needed today. Thank you so much!
you have great tips here and very invaluable and straight to the point. am already trying out a few.
Very solid tips. I’m still working on keeping visitors on my page right now. Its tough! Thank you!
Mary Hill says
Great tips. I use most of these, but I am trying to add a landing page to improve my bounce rate. Thanks for sharing.
These are great tips!!!! Thanks for sharing these with us. I definitely want to implement your suggestion for using the Related Posts WordPress plugin. Keep on being awesome!
Laura aka The "SpunkyDiva" says
Great article! Really loved some of the tips you gave… I’ll have to double check and implement them.
Nicole | Glamorously You says
great tips! I’ve been trying to improve my bounce rate so I will be referring back to this 🙂
Thanks for this one! I’ve found that also using related post links in the body of my posts helps too. I really need to create a start here page, hoping it will be up by the end of the year!
Sarah McLarkey says
Great tips, some of these I really need to start doing!
Cybergenic Associates Int’l says
I love reading your blog and thanks a lot for the great tips. Can’t wait to try and apply these tips to our own blogs too, soon. We are still working on creating one and this definitely helps 🙂
T I Antor says
Thank you, Latasha and nnCoco for giving a chance to read a very useful post.
You have nailed up all the best reasons and strategies for keeping a visitor on a page for a long time.
All these 10 steps really rocking and useful too. Also, if we place a back to top button in the footer area after the post, it will be very helpful for visitors to go to the top section easily.
These are really great steps for decreasing a website bounce rate and increasing traffic. Btw, thanks a lot for sharing these useful steps. Have a great weekend.
Angela @ Stray Curls says
These are some really good tips! I’ve recently started blogging again so I was looking for some tips to decrease the bounce rate. Thanks a ton. 😀
John Mulindi says
I totally agree with your points. If visitors spend more time on your site, they will probably buy some products on your blog if you are selling, and also staying there reduces the bounce rate increasing the rank of your site. Thanks for sharing these useful tips.
Papaga Bless says
These are great tips. I’ve implemented some of them on my blog especially the Popular posts and related plugin. Thanks so much. I’ll practice the rest and see the results i’ll get.
Found new tips and cannot wait to apply these techniques to my blog. Adding popular posts on the side bar is a great tip.
Thank you for sharing! Will be adding a couple things to my blog calendar and content calendar with these techniques. Looking forward to lowering that bounce rate!
Sandy | Beauty, Bliss & Chaos
Latasha Peterson says
Thanks so much for stopping by. It’s super cool that you have a blog and content calendar. That’s an amazing idea. 🙂
Keep me posted on your blog progress. I am excited for you!