There’s a direct correlation between the loading time of your website and bounce rate; which is the term used to describe when people visit your site but leave straight away without engaging in the content or products on offer.
There can be a number of reasons for this from poor navigation to content hierarchy and a lack of apparent relevance to the end users needs. However, in today’s impatient world, particularly when it comes to online activities, people will click off your website if it hasn’t loaded within a couple of seconds… oh, and to make this even more of an issue, sometimes it’s not your fault… if someone has really slow internet, their end, the bounce rate theory will still apply.
We, therefore, need to look at ways to optimize the loading time of your website and reduce bounce rate.
To better explain ‘bounce rate’ you might want to think of a busy high street where there are many shops vying for your attention. You, like most customers, will naturally browse a few different stores many times walking in and walking straight back out, because the store doesn’t capture your attention or interest in the merchandise.
Now, as the store owner, your job is to engage visitors so they spend a reasonable amount of time in your store; as the more time they spend in your store the greater the probability they’ll spend money, which is why big brands invest so much in visual merchandising.
Now, picture a frustrated store owner that has lots of customers walking in but then turning around and leaving straight away. This means that whilst they would have high traffic, they have very low engagement, and therefore people simply aren’t buying anything.
In the digital world, this would translate as a high bounce rate.
Having a high bounce rate will cripple your online success, and whilst a high bounce rate can be attributed to other factors such as a lack of engaging content, lack of relevance, lack of a clear user benefit, or difficult navigation… it has been found that 40% of potential customers will leave your website if the site takes more than 3 seconds to load.
In an increasingly impatient world, particularly online, where people are bombarded with content choices and overwhelmed with options from a multitude of service providers ensuring an optimum load speed of your website is equally as important as branding.
User Experience (UX) design is equally critical as is the need to ensure people are able to find you through search engine optimization, social media, and content marketing. Indeed, today, this is such a core area of e-commerce that many people are choosing to have this managed for them by a company such as ignitedigital.com. In many ways, it pays dividends to outsource this, at least at a strategic level, to a specialist company as it’s so important you have visibility online.
In summary, getting found in the first place is your first challenge then ensuring they are engaged with your website by the use of relevant content and clear architecture; all the while making sure your web pages load at lightning speed.