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Taking The Bounce Out of Your Home Based Business Website

2007 - Stephen Wright

Unless you are talking about which brand name of laundry dryer sheets are the best, when it comes to managing a home based business website – “bounce” is not a good thing. Sadly, in the world of online internet marketing it happens more times than not.

If you have one of the mega-websites with tons of traffic, revenue and sales, perhaps you will not care as much. Likewise, if you have a quick hit single page website for marketing and sales of a single product, bounce does not affect you. But for the rest of us, bounce is a critical flaw in home business activities.

Bounce occurs when someone finds their way to a page on our website and leaves immediately from the “landing page” without going anywhere else on our website. Internet marketing trends clearly show an ever increasing rise in the amount of traffic which falls into this pattern.

The common or typical term for indicating this is “bounce rate”. And as you might have guessed - it is not a good thing. Bounce rate is shown as a percentage amount. For example a bounce rate on a website home page of 80%-90% (which is quite common) is not good.

On the other hand a bounce rate of 30%-40% (or lower) is a good thing. In this case the lower the better. Personally, I use 35% as a realistic goal for the majority of websites I manage.

Unfortunately, this can happen due to a number of factors and situations. The search engines for example continually review (crawl) web pages for content and relevant keywords. Those keywords are reported back and used to send people searching the web to your site. Problem is -- this does not mean that traffic landing on your website is looking for what you have to sell.

Say you are selling jelly beans. If I am searching for “pinto beans” the search engines pick up “beans” from your website content. My search sends me to your website. You can bet I’ll be leaving your business website in seconds. Your bounce rate just went up! If you paid for my “click”, you lose. My visiting your website with no chance of a sale, you lose again.

For a home based business entrepreneur this even worse. This can be especially hard if you paid for traffic with the pay-per-click search engines (such as Google, MSN, or Yahoo). Or if you have worked hard like many of us to keep current content through articles and popular products flowing through your website. Either way, high bounce rates can have a devastating impact on you home business. 

Fortunately, there are some things that you can do about the problem. First up, make sure you are tracking and carefully monitoring your bounce rates. Most web hosts now include statistical information on websites hosted on their servers. If you are not using their reports, you need to start.

Another good source of stat data (if you use pay-per-click advertising such as Google Adwords) is the “analytics” and reports provided as a part of these programs. They are a wealth of information, including bounce rates (even down to the individual keyword level). 

And finally, there are a whole host of software and online applications that give you traffic and statistical information on your web traffic. Do a few searches, you will find lots of possibilities. 

Once you have a method in place to track and monitor your progress, you need to establish specific goals and activities for reducing your bounce rates. No matter how good, or bad your current bounce rate is you should seek to improve it. It is an area of improvement that potentially can and will drive up revenues and profits. Tracking, monitoring, taking action, then tracking and monitoring all over again should be an ongoing practice.

A future article will cover specifics about actions and activities you might undertake to reduce bounce to your business websites. This article was intended to be a primer to make you aware of the issue and hopefully compelled to do something about it!

We can not make this problem go away. It takes awareness and proactive actions to carefully manage. What is important to note is that keeping your bounce (bounce rate) as low as possible is an ongoing battle.

You must closely and continually monitor the stats for your website and take appropriate action as necessary. You will be glad you did. The reward for your efforts will be increased revenues and profits!


Stephen Wright is President & CEO of
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