Optimizing a website : Minimizing your Bounce Rate

What is the bounce rate for a website?
If you are one who goes through your website, you would have noticed the Column Bounce Rate. Bounce Rate is the percentage of your visitors leaving your site after a single page visit. And most likely these visitors would have come from a search engine, looking for a specific piece of information. And if they are leaving either they could be disappointed in the content or they found the answer. Typically a  Bounce Rate  of less than 50% is good. And for new sites with very few visitors bounce rate could be upto 75%.

How to minimize your bounce rate?
If you are using Google Analytics, you would be able to see the site’s entire bounce rate and individual pages Bounce Rate. If a individual page is getting higher percentage of visitors and also having higher bounce rate then you need to fix those pages in particular, before going for a entire site overhaul.

Typically a higher bounce rate would indicate the following :
1. Content is poor.
2. Misleading title/SEO optimization.
3. Poor Navigations like Similar posts/Recent Posts etc.

If the content is poor then you might need to get more in depth content for the page without removing existing article completely. If you believe your content is not related to the title, then you might want to add relevant information as it help you in earning the trust of your visitors. Google eventually will reduce your rank in the search index if the bounce rate is higher, as a high bounce rate shows less relevant information.

And if the link structure or Related Posts/Recent Posts organisation is not correct then you might as well go for a complete site overhaul to place these links in highly visible areas of your site.

Also adding a page navigation, Collapsible archives in your site could help. Adding other page links just below or near your content/main entrance of your sites will help in leaving your visitors.

Does it help in SEO if you host same content in two domains ?

This post answers the following questions

  • Does it help in SEO to host the same content in two domains?
  • Is it a good idea to host two copies of your site?
  • Can I use two domain names?

Well the answer is no, and absolutely not. If you host duplicate content the end result might send both your domains to bottom of the search results. This creates a duplicate content issue, so Google will think at least one of the site is copying or mirroring the content. And you will never get double the traffic. And your new domain will never see the top of the search rankings.

So if you are planning to migrate to a new domain, then set a permanent 301 redirect in the old domain for at least 3 months before retiring the old domain. If your audience come mainly through Search engines this should be fine, but if they come through other site links, then you might need to change those links or keep the old site’s redirect on.

You can find how to set up a permanent 301 redirect here

Article on 301 Redirect

Which ads have higher eCPM in Adsense – Text ads or Image ads ?

This post answers the following questions –
Which Ad type in Adsense is good in eCPM ?
Which Ad type in Adsense is good in CTR ?

When I joined the program I was of the opinion that the Text ads get better earnings than the image ads. The main reason of my opinion was that text ads were attracting more clicks from the user. Image ads had lower Click Through Rates (CTR), so after a bit of experimenting I settled down for Text Only Ads.

At a later point, I read through Adsense optimization tips which suggested that a mix of Image and Text was the best solution. Though I was not very sure I still went ahead and changed the ads setting for one of my major site and the CTR went down by eCPM went up. Basically the Clicks went down but the effective Money we make for same page views increased. Let me explain with an example

Say if I have 1000 page views and my clicks are 70 and my earning is $ 3.0 with Text only ads.
Page Views – 1000
Clicks – 70
CTR – 7%
eCPM – $ 3.0

After I changed to a mix of Text and Image the equation changed

Page Views – 1000
Clicks – 50
CTR – 5%
eCPM – $ 3.5

Basically the image ads have more CPC, cost per click say than the Text ads, this could be because typically image ads take space of four different Text links and hence the higher CPC. Also Google Adsense Blog says that Google tries to give either Image or Text based on whichever is more profitable to publisher.

So you can also do a bit of experiment and adjust your ads, according to the following is the order of performance

Text and Image Ads – Best
Text Only Ads – Good
Image Only Ads – Bad (many ads wont have image version and u will end up showing blank spaces instead of ads)