The title says it all here. Trying to reduce my sites overall bounce rate this month I found working on the homepage could be one of the biggest helpers. What did I do? I reduced the size of my introduction message, which brought the blog posts up. The end result? A 11.25% decrease in bounced visitors.
There has been a couple of other factors helping this out. I added the Read More links a while back, and I also recently added the thumbnails with posts that had images in them. Looking at my stats and journal though, bringing up the content was undoubtedly the biggest influence of the three items.
Previously the introduction message was about 400 pixels high, on a 1024 pixel setting. Combining that with about 150 more pixels in the header it meant many visitors didn’t even see the first post below it, and that meant many new visitors were not even grasping the idea I was blogging on a regular basis. Ouch!
By reducing my introduction message size, I put more focus on the primary objective, and also made it more obvious I was posting. Larger monitors can now even see two posts titles without scrolling. This has gotten me to thinking about even reducing my logo height a little.
General Stats Comparing the Previous Month
Here are some figures to give you an overall picture of the stats for the home page since I made the change.
- Page Views – Up 14% (I doubt this was a result of the change, just traffic continues to go up for this site)
- Unique Views – Up 8% (Probably for the same reason as page views)
- Time on Page – Down 5% (This is the result of the previous change I made adding the Read More Link. Time on the page is down because readers are clicking the links and going to the post page instead of reading it on the home page.)
- Bounce Rate – Down 12% (This was a direct result of the change I made. Change in bounce rate for return visitors was hardly influenced at all. The change was a big influencer for new visitors, and since 80% of my traffic is new visitors…a big deal.)
- % Exit – Down 10% (Another plus, indicating the home page is becoming more of a resource, not an end source)
I’m sure those of you trying to make money with ads on your site know to keep them high. Well the same goes for you killer content!