PDA

View Full Version : Bounce Rates - anyone else?



GGG
06-20-2012, 06:11 AM
For nearly 5 days, our bounce rates have been 10 to 20% higher than usual. In fact, never this high since we opened for business. I can't seem to find a cause/page/search term/browser...common denominator and few site changes. The rate is outrageously high whether direct, referral, or search.

Our site speed has actually improved, so I don't think this is the reason.

Anyone else seeing these kind of stats? Any suggestions as to how I should troubleshoot? Current rate is unacceptable.

Thanks

kajo13
06-20-2012, 09:22 PM
For nearly 5 days, our bounce rates have been 10 to 20% higher than usual. In fact, never this high since we opened for business. I can't seem to find a cause/page/search term/browser...common denominator and few site changes. The rate is outrageously high whether direct, referral, or search.

Our site speed has actually improved, so I don't think this is the reason.

Anyone else seeing these kind of stats? Any suggestions as to how I should troubleshoot? Current rate is unacceptable.

Thanks

Did you search by location? Any anomalies there?

eellsworth
06-20-2012, 09:50 PM
Triple G...do you have a conversion funnel and how does it look lately compared to the past?

GGG
06-21-2012, 04:12 AM
Hi Erik,

No, I didn't search by location yet. That's my project today. No, I don't have a conversion funnel set up yet, but our overall conversion rate is way down from usual. We generally only see low conversions immediately prior to a holiday when people are browsing prior to returning to purchase...and never a high bounce rate. I also plan to do a browser check today to see if there's a site problem that I'm unaware of. I just can't seem to find a common denominator.

When compared to same time last year every single # is up, up, up...except time on site and bounce rate. High bounce rates are most definitely #s that we don't typically see and I'm perplexed. In some cases 28% higher...say what?! Ditto time on site. No massive changes to site design, keywords, etc. Spent time yesterday reading up on bounce rate, but couldn't find anything that might explain it.

Unless a combo of things like Pinterest bounces -given nature of pinning, keyword not provided from Google, mobile visits, location visits...however, we've been dealing with those factors for awhile now and never seen anything like this. Ever.

Whatever it is I need to figure it out stat. This is entirely unacceptable.

Quadica
06-21-2012, 08:28 AM
Just had a look at our stats and our bounce rate has not changed at all. Been at the same level we have seen for the past 6 months.

GGG
06-21-2012, 09:00 AM
Just had a look at our stats and our bounce rate has not changed at all. Been at the same level we have seen for the past 6 months.

Ouch! Now I'm really concerned.

Thanks for checking Quad.

GGG
06-22-2012, 07:11 AM
Quad...just noticed your signature. LOL.

Spent last night checking location vs. bounce rate stats. I checked for anything over a 50% bounce & there was a large proportion of bounces that came from countries outside US. Not sure there's anyway to prevent this? Our GWT settings are set to U.S....and yes, the majority of those foreign visits came from Google.

I also did a test for all browsers. May be a problem with Chrome and warnings, but since I can't read French I have no idea what it's saying! Plus, I've asked members before to test for me in Chrome and I've always received a "looks ok to me" response. When I've tested on Chrome has come back fine. Beats the heck out of me.

On a side note, I found a thread that I posted in TOF - the old forum - sorry, I'm getting tired of typing it out all the time. It appears that I posted in August 2011 of a similar occurrence that lasted nearly a week...followed by a return to our usual bounce rate/time on site. Hoping like heck that's what's happening this time because I'm truly mystified. I can't fix what I can't figure out as a problem.

Quadica
06-22-2012, 12:24 PM
I had a look at our overall bounce rate stats for the top 50 countries by visits since Jan 1 and this is how it is currently breaking down:

USA - 35.9%
Canada - 38.9%
Average All Other Countries - 46.1%

These levels have been pretty stable going back 18 months. So for us at least it would appear that a 10% higher bounce rate is typical for international visitors.

By browser it breaks down like this:

Firefox - 42.6%
Internet Explorer - 38.3%
Chrome - 40.0%
Safari - 51.3%

So not a lot of difference between the top 3 browsers. Not sure what is up with Safari. Will need to look into that.

Kitty
07-08-2012, 08:13 AM
Could it be a knock on effect of the problems we had when volusion was down. I know on the 1st and 2nd my traffic died, google couldn't access any of my URLS and banned my products, and for about 3 days afterwards my site speed which is slow anyway was horrific which would increase bounces.

It really worries me that these performance issues happen and the effect this has on the quality perception google has of our sites.

In a recent vid google states that they don't use data like bounce rate from your google analytics to rank search results. I must be an old cynic as I am not convinced........

GGG
07-08-2012, 08:32 AM
I'm definitely an old cynic...ha!

The 3rd week of June was the killer for us in terms of bounce rates. Still not quite back to 'normal' rate, but at least falling. Never did figure out why it happened and can't think of anything else to troubleshoot...

Would like to reach Quad's averages:)

danglus
07-10-2012, 07:41 AM
I am suffering from bounce rate issues as well. Something changed about 10 days ago, and now I am seeing the worst sales ever.
I have not been able to track the problem down, would love some advice if anyone else has seen it.

I have made the decision to jump ship and move to 3D cart, I can't take these issues with V any more.

GGG
07-10-2012, 10:45 AM
Hey danglus,

Our bounce rates were returning to normal, but then started to skew again.

However, there's so much going on with Google right now that I don't know if I can blame Volusion for this. For customers used to seeing Google shopping I'm wondering if perhaps clicking on our links and not finding what they want? Or browsing more? If so, perhaps my bad...and not Volusion's. Or general search issues. Would love to know if others experiencing.

Odd that bounce rates are way up for pages that don't typically have a high bounce rate. I can't seem to get a handle on it.

Not that I'm ready to give V a free pass, of course!! :)

Kitty
07-10-2012, 02:38 PM
Hey danglus,

Our bounce rates were returning to normal, but then started to skew again.

However, there's so much going on with Google right now that I don't know if I can blame Volusion for this. For customers used to seeing Google shopping I'm wondering if perhaps clicking on our links and not finding what they want? Or browsing more? If so, perhaps my bad...and not Volusion's. Or general search issues. Would love to know if others experiencing.

Odd that bounce rates are way up for pages that don't typically have a high bounce rate. I can't seem to get a handle on it.

Not that I'm ready to give V a free pass, of course!! :)

Its weird isn't it I wonder if the whole world is getting so conditioned to information overload on sites like pinterest where they skim thousands of images and products in minutes that people are just turning into goldfish with 3 second attention spans....I jest not this is evolution....

AWCthreads
07-10-2012, 06:21 PM
Go to GA and look at the number of people visiting your site using the various browsers. Then go to GWT and look at the page load times for the different browsers. Our data is inversely proportional. The browsers taking longer times to load a page are the browsers more frequently used on our site.

Pages are loading slowly and people are bouncing.

Kitty
07-11-2012, 02:04 AM
Go to GA and look at the number of people visiting your site using the various browsers. Then go to GWT and look at the page load times for the different browsers. Our data is inversely proportional. The browsers taking longer times to load a page are the browsers more frequently used on our site.

Pages are loading slowly and people are bouncing.'

Yes, I have got sick of worrying about it. Yesterday I was using GWT and testing various things although my site appeared to be 'up' Google Webmaster tools was having difficulty accessing my site to produce in page analytics. I fear it was timing out.

I am seeing bizarre site page speed differentials in GWT ranging from 1.5 seconds to over 1 minute. I went to various independent on line site speed checkers and got a range of similar bizarre results with no consistency. It is not like one page consistently takes a minute to load in one test it may be 1.5 secs in another 1 min.

I do not know if this is some freak of V's CDN as I am based in UK?? Perhaps they have got things up and running but are just using a minimal amount of servers which is impacting page load time I do not profess to understand what is causing this I just understand it is not good and I agree with AWC that this will be impacting bounce rate.

AWCthreads
07-11-2012, 04:52 AM
When I get to the office I will post the various speeds in different browsers. Google puts such emphasis on speed, that poor page load times is as bad or worse as a poor checkout experience.

If you've got slow speed times, customers won't see your product>no cart load>no sales.

AWCthreads
07-11-2012, 04:55 AM
I remember a post somewhere here that said their sales improved 20% (or something) after moving to another cart. There is a possibility that improved page load times either attributed or contributed to that increase.

Kitty
07-11-2012, 05:25 AM
I remember a post somewhere here that said their sales improved 20% (or something) after moving to another cart. There is a possibility that improved page load times either attributed or contributed to that increase.

I have tried looking at all the page speed tools and their recommendations and got demoralised as it seems a lot of the stuff they recommend like creating CSS sprites for all v images and setting image parameters and caching and rearranging V's script are things that are beyond a basic service subscribers control without paying for a developer to access stuff that we don't get easy access too.

It would be good if V got their content in their basic templates optimised to enable their customers to have a chance with decent page speed time.

In my opinion when we start with one of V's templates that should come to us out of the box fully optimised in every way including page speed. If we stuff it up after that point that is our hard cheddar but we pay for a service and should be given a good basic foundation to work on.

It is such an important KPI that I wouldn't be surprised if Google don't even have some kind of cut off point these days for page speed that if sites lag dramatically they just bin them. I know they don't mention it that brutally but I think it is a strong possibility that search engines may blacklist sites now below a certain level of speed. I imagine a bot may well have a time limit on attempting to crawl a page and will time out and go away if it can't crawl the data within a certain time limit, and then I am sure they will give a big thumbs down to that site.

Phil
07-11-2012, 06:48 AM
I saw somewhere a SEO specialist with lots of experience estimated that Google's new alogorithm probably assigns 10% of its ranking to page speed.

AWCthreads
07-11-2012, 07:31 AM
Here's a snapshot of our site's browser stats and load times for browsers:

87

The Safari data is missing today. It was available yesterday, but for some reason not today. Safari is the second most used browser by our customers and if I remember correctly, it was slower than Firefox.

Ironically, twice in the past week I received contact from customers who could not see all of their shipping options in the drop-down on the checkout page and they were using Safari. So, not only is it slow but it does not deliver all of our site content. This is bad.

Also, not shown is Android Browser 1,789 pageviews in the particular snapshot used above and the page load time averaged 15.28 seconds. Wouldn't you bounce?

Kitty
07-11-2012, 07:51 AM
Here's a snapshot of our site's browser stats and load times for browsers:

87

The Safari data is missing today. It was available yesterday, but for some reason not today. Safari is the second most used browser by our customers and if I remember correctly, it was slower than Firefox.

Ironically, twice in the past week I received contact from customers who could not see all of their shipping options in the drop-down on the checkout page and they were using Safari. So, not only is it slow but it does not deliver all of our site content. This is bad.

Also, not shown is Android Browser 1,789 pageviews in the particular snapshot used above and the page load time averaged 15.28 seconds. Wouldn't you bounce?

Yep that is the kind of numbers I am seeing in the 15s sometimes not doing us any good is it. I can only hope this is a temporary glitch with Volusion as previously my average page speed was much higher and a knock on effect of the issues they have had recently that will get sorted when they get their act together again.

I am trying to keep stuff in perspective and not sound demoralising to everyone I can't decide whether 10% importance is a lot or not really but basically most of my sales at the moment come from repeat customers it seems impossible to rank sometimes and being a small business it is not viable to spend five figures and upwards on SEO/CO/Advertising.

Because if that was the case in relation I would have spent tens of thousands on my website rather than used V ;)

So Ok, v falls in a certain budget but it is a bit worrying when colleagues on free platforms on shared servers seem to manage better speeds........

AWCthreads
07-11-2012, 08:06 AM
Google is obsessed with speed because it affects the quality of user experience. Thankfully, we have good load times for Google's browser. Unfortunately, a lesser percentage of our customers use it.

The upside is that the majority of our customers use IE and 2.16 is acceptable. I'd like to see it below 2sec as is Chrome, but still I'll take 2.16.

GGG
07-11-2012, 09:19 AM
Here's a snapshot of our site's browser stats and load times for browsers:

87

The Safari data is missing today. It was available yesterday, but for some reason not today. Safari is the second most used browser by our customers and if I remember correctly, it was slower than Firefox.

Ironically, twice in the past week I received contact from customers who could not see all of their shipping options in the drop-down on the checkout page and they were using Safari. So, not only is it slow but it does not deliver all of our site content. This is bad.

Also, not shown is Android Browser 1,789 pageviews in the particular snapshot used above and the page load time averaged 15.28 seconds. Wouldn't you bounce?

awc, paybacks are a gripe:) I need a click by click replay of how you obtained this snapshot...

Where are you pulling this data from? I tried in GA and must be missing some metrics.

AWCthreads
07-11-2012, 09:36 AM
awc, paybacks are a gripe:)

Darn tootin'! Here ya go: In GA>Standard Reporting>Audience>Technology>Browser & OS. This will give you customer browser usage volumes.

Then, go to GA>Standard Reporting>Site Speed>Overview. This will give you the average page load per second by browser. You can also drill down to individual page load times in the left nav choices.

The graph I posted is an edited combination of the two pages.

GGG
07-11-2012, 12:02 PM
The graph I posted is an edited combination of the two pages.

wall <-- Head. Well, duh..no wonder I couldn't find it! I was looking for a compilation report. Ha!

Thanks :p

Kitty
07-12-2012, 04:45 AM
I have just noticed another really bizarre thing. In google analytics my browser report shows that suddenly on 23rd June all visits from IE ceased and flatlined ever since to present date.

I have checked V's browser stats and they illustrate that I am still getting IE visits which I know is correct.

I have not changed any GA report settings anyone any clue what may be causing this???

Kitty
07-12-2012, 05:44 AM
Ignore me ;) It was an error in my script hope to have fixed it now :o

cooperm
03-14-2013, 08:49 AM
Conversion Rate Optimization consultant here.

Whenever your bounce rate goes up suddenly, it usually means you have started receiving more traffic from a traffic source that tends to bounce high. Segment your data in GA by traffic source and look for correlations. Most likely due to changes in the way your site ranks in google for certain terms. Most likely if you look at overall revenue it'll be the same.