What is a bounce rate?

If a website user only visits one page and then exits, they can be said to have ‘bounced’ out of the site.

Bounce rate is the Google Analytics metric which captures this element of visitor behaviour. It is the percentage of visits that only include one page (or a single request to the Analytics server).

Are bounces always bad?

Short and shallow visit are generally held to be ‘a bad thing’, occurring because of negative reasons such as a visitor realising very quickly that the website will not meet their requirements. For this reason webmasters will aspire to achieve a low bounce rate.

The big picture

However if the visitor immediately finds the information they require, for instance a phone number or address, a high bounce rate could arguably be seen as a positive thing.

This apparent contradiction demonstrates why a bounce rate must always be viewed alongside all other website data and not taken in isolation.

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