What is a good bounce rate for a website?

Google Analytics 4 has changed a lot, but many people still ask us what a good Bounce Rate is. Here we look at the Bounce Rate metric and what figure you should be targeting for success and Engagement in Google Analytics 4.

What is a good bounce rate for a website?

What is a good bounce rate for a website?

We get asked this a lot, but it actually doesn't really matter anymore. Here is a short article on why Bounce Rates should be ignored moving forward.

When Google released Google Analytics 4, a lot changed, and Bounce Rate was dropped. Their new version of analytics released in October 2020 gives you different metrics to follow. But if you are still using Google Analytics 3, the Bounce Rate is still there. In Google Analytics 4, they concentrate on Engagement, which we'll cover later, but let's look at the Bounce Rate and a good target for a website.

What is Bounce Rate?

The Bounce Rate is used to track how many people visit just one page of your website before exiting. Here are the triggers for a Bounce:

  • 1 Page View
  • < 10 Seconds on-page, or
  • No Conversion Event

However, the downside of using Bounce Rate to track visitor behaviour is that it covers these metrics too:

  • 1 Page View
  • >= 10 Seconds on that page, or
  • Conversion Event

Yep, if you read that last part correctly, it doesn't make sense. You got a Conversion Event, but Google tracked the visitor as a Bounce. We've always been critical of using Bounce Rate, but new clients use it until we show them why it's a flawed metric. If you are using Google Analytics 3, it can offer you some information that could be helpful but doesn't really portray what is actually happening on your website.

So what is a good Bounce Rate?

You want excellent user engagement with your website and its content. Therefore, the obvious answer is the lower, the better. But let's get into some statistics.

We've taken a look at analytics data for a decent sample of clients that we have worked with over the years. On average, we can see Bounce Rates between 26% and 72%, with an average Bounce Rate of 48%.

Here's a practical example of a Bounce Rate and why we don't like using it as a metric

Although our clients' website had an overall Bounce Rate of 72%, it was a high converting website. The Bounce Rate doesn't do its performance justice. If we solely relied on that statistic without doing tons of more profound analysis, the client wouldn't be happy and think the website was underperforming and losing visitors.

The clients' website has many landing pages, not just front-end web pages. We used Social Media Marketing and Pay-Per-Click Ads to drive traffic and then Email Marketing Funnels to re-engage for high conversions. The website's overall Bounce Rate of 72% includes traffic arriving on Landing Pages, not the website itself. Luckily, we set up a Google Analytics View to ignore landing pages. The actual Bounce Rate for the entire website, excluding Landing Pages, was only 49%.

Google changed Bounce Rate to Engagement in Google Analytics 4 because millions of websites are just one page, including landing pages. Therefore, the metric didn't really work anymore.

In addition, if you had Goals set up on your website and that Goal was to visit a single page, do something (e.g. fill in a form), which was then processed with Javascript with a JSON response, you achieved your Goal, but Google Analytics could process that as a Bounce. Clearly, this would give you confusing data that wouldn't make sense.

Top Tip: Setup Google Analytics Views now! Sadly, you can't set up a Google Analytics View to look at historical data. Views will only look at data from the date the View was created. Get in there early, and plan the Views you want to see.

Should you upgrade to Google Analytics 4?

The simple answer is "Yes"!

This is all about User Engagement, and Google actually wants you to upgrade, so it's critical. That is why Google has deprecated the Bounce Rate metric and replaced it with Engagement. This focus means we can track the users' interaction more deeply and focus on increasing that metric to improve their satisfaction with your website and subsequently boost your conversion rate.

If you are using Landing Pages or have a one-page website, this method really helps you understand what's going on.

If you like help upgrading to Google Analytics 4, let us know. We can deploy this for you in around an hour, so it's really cost-effective, quick to do and gives you a ton of valuable data moving forward...we'll even include some Views you wouldn't have thought of!

Ready to kickstart your PPC Campaign?