Bounce rate: one of the most dreaded metrics to analyze as a content marketer.
Your bounce rate measures engagement — a reader arrives at a page on your website and “bounces” right off without visiting any other pages. Although this isn’t the most fun metric to look at if your numbers are high, it’s an important one to track.
Blogs that publish dense content — in large paragraphs, lacking headers, with low-quality images and ads squeezed into every crevice of the page — are driving readers away and, in turn, increasing their bounce rate.
Brands are already fighting for exposure in the noisy marketing world, so there’s no time for rookie mistakes like formatting issues. Your company has to publish high-quality, easy-to-read content in an appealing format or risk disappearing into the noise.
According to a Nielsen Norman Group study, on average, users only have time to read 28 percent of the words on a webpage per visit.
So if you produce a high-quality, engaging article that’s 800 words, your consumers are only reading 224 of them and moving on.
You need to format for user readability.
Blogs such as Medium, for example, do a great job of offering content using a simple, clean format. Your eyes aren’t distracted by any advertisements or bulky paragraphs, and at the top of each article page, there’s an estimate of how long it will take to read it. I personally love its design and read new posts out of appreciation (and because it has comics about corgis).
If your bounce rates are flying through the roof, formatting is probably an issue. Lucky for you, it’s a pretty easy fix. Ask yourself these five questions while reading your content, and tweak as needed:
High-quality content will cease to reach readers if poor formatting gets in the way. Go through your blog posts and any other published articles, and make sure your layout entices the reader to keep reading, not exit before you get a chance to deliver your message. If you format with solid headlines, paragraph breaks, high-quality images, and calls to action, your bounce rate just might start showing you some love.
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Post by Maya Szydlowski