What Discourages Customers of Online Shops – How to Reduce Bounce Rate?

What Discourages Customers of Online Shops – How to Reduce Bounce Rate?

The number of online stores is increasing year by year. More and more often people prefer to shop with the use of the Internet. But what influences their decision which store to choose? Which website elements can discourage customers from shopping? In today’s article we’re going to spill the beans and explain to you what aspects of your online store may effectively daunt users.

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Bounce rate – what is it?

Let’s start from the very beginning. What’s bounce rate? Well, it’s the percentage of users who visited your website and left it before entering another subpage. It’s calculated by dividing the number of people who entered only one subpage of the site by the number of all visits to the website. It’s shown in the graphics below.

The bounce rate equation

How to interpret your bounce rate?

You can expect a few scenarios which caused visitors to leave the site.

  1. Internet users didn’t find what they were looking for on your website and decided to leave it by closing the tab or going back to the search results.
  2. Users already found what they were looking for on the first subpage and didn’t need to go any further.
  3. There is also the possibility that users clicked other URL on your website and were automatically redirected to another site.
  4. To consider all possible scenarios, you should also take into account the fact that users might have spent so much time on one subpage of your website that the session time exceeded 30 minutes, without any interaction, and this situation was counted to bounce rate.
  5. And last but not least, maybe your website has only a homepage and users aren’t able to enter another subpage. Bounce rate for one-page websites will always be relatively high.

Bounce rate and its “acceptable” and “unacceptable” levels – when do you need to worry?

Let’s take a closer look at the scale below that will allow you to evaluate whether your bounce rate is at an unacceptable level and whether you should introduce changes to the website:

  • 80% + – unacceptable level
  • 70 – 80% – bad level
  • 50-70% – average level
  • 30-50% – desirable level
  • 20% or less – there is probably a tracking error that can result from e.g. code duplication or incorrect tracking implementation.

However, this is a very general classification and everything depends on the industry and the type of the website. This scale works well for all classic shops. Nevertheless, in the case of landing pages, this indicator needs to be interpreted completely differently. The infographic below shows proper bounce rate level in various industries:

bounce rate by industry

How to decrease your bounce rate?

What to do if your bounce rate is too high? Do you wonder how to decrease it? Below you can see a list of few tips that you should start with:

1. Improve the layout of your website and take care of user experience

The layout of your website matters more than you think. Is everything clear and easy to comprehend? Is your menu intuitive enough? This aspect incorporates many elements such as consistent and user friendly colors or font that shouldn’t be too big or unclear.

2. Ensure that your website has responsive web design and mobile version

Today, mobile devices are eagerly used by people all over the world. Very often we browse the Internet sitting on the bus on our way to work or university. We’re also more willing to buy with the use of our mobile devices. Therefore, you should ensure that your website adapts to various types of resolution.

3. Place Call to Action on the most frequently visited subpage on your website

Use various tools (e.g. HotJar) that will show you which items on the website are visited and clicked on most frequently. Thanks to that you’ll be able to find out where to place your Call to Action.

4. Ensure short loading time of your website

If your website loads more than 5 seconds, users probably won’t wait. Instead, they’ll enter another site that loads faster. It’s a good idea to compress your pictures and graphics so that the website loads as quickly as possible.

The most harmful practices of online shops – how do you shoot yourself in the foot?

Just to put you in the picture, below we’ll show you exemplary websites on which making a purchase may turn out to be a bit challenging and whose designs aren’t the most notable in the world:

  • Arngren.net

At first glance you can see… almost everything and nothing 😉 The author of this website certainly forgot about the elements and rules that user experience is governed by. Random arrangement of photos and texts, too many graphics and information in one place. All of this makes the website rather overwhelming.

Arngren User Experience
source: http://www.arngren.net/
  • Pennyjuice.com

This website offers juices made especially for children. However, browsing the website itself is a challenge. The number of colors used in the design of the site makes it chaotic and draws attention to too many elements at the same time. Using brighter colors only in such important places on the site as Call to Action could be much more effective.

Pennyjuice User Experience
source: https://www.pennyjuice.com/

For the sake of comparison, now we’ll give you some examples of website designs that are definitely worth following:

  • x-kom.pl 

The x-kom.pl online store website is very user-friendly. There aren’t too many bright colors. The names, prices and photos of products are very important information that needs to be clearly visible for the customer.

X-Kom user experience
source: https://www.x-kom.pl/
  • Reserved

This is another example of a great online store created in accordance with the rules of user experience. Clear and attractive photos, minimalism or properly exposed names and prices of the products are the very basics of a properly structured online shop.

Reserved online store
source: https://www.reserved.com/gb/en/

The above examples are just a few of the problems that can be encountered when visiting today’s online stores. Other elements that negatively influence your e-commerce include:

1. The lack of detailed product description

It’s crucial to optimize product subpages. A comprehensive, factual and unique product description is a must.

2. The lack of customer reviews

Reviews and star ratings can be very helpful and they can affect the decision making process of your new potential customers.

3. Call to Action that is unclear

The “call to action” button is a very important element. Its size should be adequately adjusted to the whole site. The color is also relevant.

4. The content doesn’t match the target group

Segmentation and personalization of your marketing activities is a key to success. Identifying groups of your consumers and specifying the advertising media according to their needs and preferences is the only way to ensure that your marketing is effective. Sending emails or offering special discounts that will attract new customers is something that should bring desirable results.

5. Too long purchasing process

The fewer steps needed to complete the purchase, the better. Users don’t want to wait, they love to have everything ready at their disposal.

6. No possibility to buy a product without setting up an account

Make it possible to shop without creating an account. Ensure that all your instructions are clear and understandable. It can significantly improve your shopping cart abandonment rate.

7. Hidden costs

Be fair and provide all costs such as the product or delivery price in a clear and understandable way. Customers hate when just before ordering the product it turns out that the final price is much higher than the amount they assumed previously.

8. No preferable delivery method

Today’s market is full of various delivery options. Make sure that your online store offers all of them and give your customers the chance to select their preferable delivery method.

9. Too many pop-up ads

It’s a good idea to introduce pop-ups which give your customers an extra discount before they decide to leave the site and this way encourage them to make a purchase. However, don’t gild the lily as too many pop-up ads can be for your customers like a red rag to a bull.

10. The website isn’t mobile friendly

Today, a lot of people use mobile devices to browse the net or even to shop online. A website without a responsive design can effectively discourage smartphone or tablet users.

Tips thanks to which your customers will fall in love with your business

When doing SEO for your online store, you need to analyze elements that might be problematic and  think like a consumer who wants to buy something. In order to ensure that your online shop operates properly, you must remember about some important issues:

  • Make sure that your menu is clear and user-friendly, don’t create too many categories and arrange the existing ones in a logical way;
  • Check whether your product search engine works properly;
  • Create unique product descriptions. Apart from influencing the SEO process, valuable content will encourage users to make a purchase;
  • Ensure that reviews of your store and products are available on the most popular ranking portals;
  • Spend a part of your budget on online marketing, take care of your SEO strategy and content marketing (blogging and being active in social media), ensure that your website is displayed on the top positions in the search results. A Google ads campaign is another way of advertising your products and services online, moreover, it can bring really satisfactory results.

To conclude, if you decide to apply all of the abovementioned methods and tips, then you’re bound not only to decrease your bounce rate but also to improve your sales. Remember about building customer trust when introducing changes to your website. Obviously, none of us wants to be tricked, therefore the more trust you inspire, the more Internet users will be willing to buy in your online store. Sometimes it turns out that the price or quality aren’t the most important factors – people want to be sure that they receive a product that is in line with its description and promises of the manufacturer. Remember that consumer trust is priceless and definitely affects the decision making process.

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Author
Junior SEO Specialist - Karolina

Junior SEO Specialist

Marketing and Market Communication student at the University of Economics. She started her SEO adventure in March 2019 in Delante. Addicted to traveling adventures and meeting inspiring people. She enjoys buying plane tickets the most. She loves running and hiking in. She cannot imagine life without sushi and white wine. In love with Spanish and Latin American culture.

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