Blog Tip Thursday: Metrics That Don’t Matter (Much) – Bounce Rate and Time on Site

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BlogTipsBadge2Every week, we share one of our favorite ‘how-to’ posts about blogging, social media, and the community we LOVE to love. Our desire is you consider HLB a resource in your efforts to blog BETTER – we want to be stronger bloggers ourselves, and we see the desire for stronger posts and cleaner designs. We understand wanting to know the BEST plug-ins, aps, programs, and resources to keep your site in tip top shape. And nothing makes us nerd-out more than getting super meta about all things blog-world. We’re not experts, we’re simply bloggers ourselves – sharing our own experiences, tips and tricks of the trade each Thursday with a BTT post. We welcome your questions, your suggestions for future topics, and your ‘how-to’ post recommendations to Emily at relishments@gmail.com!

This week’s post is from Katy, who writes about healthy living in a hectic world at katywidrick.com


Analytics and metrics matter. They’re not the end-all, be-all measure of success (I think you’re better off asking yourself these two questions) but they count, especially if you’re making money from your blog.

Contrary to popular belief, page views, unique visitors and social media followers don’t always tell the whole story about your engagement or how well you can deliver a message but they should be on your media kit.

What should not be there? Two stats that I see time and again on media kits that people submit to me for review.

Two Metrics That Really Don't Matter (Much): Bounce Rate and Time on Site

What are they?

Bounce Rate

According to Google, this is defined as:

…the percentage of single-page sessions (i.e. sessions in which the person left your site from the entrance page without interacting with the page).

There are a number of factors that contribute to a high bounce rate. For example, users might leave your site from the entrance page if there are site design or usability issues. 

High bounce rate=bad, right? Not necessarily. Sure, it’s always worth taking a look at your user’s experience. If your design sucks, if it’s not mobile optimized and you have a lot of mobile traffic, if your site is cluttered with ads or bad formatting, it will certainly send people away.

But let’s look at the rest of Google’s definition:

Alternatively, users might also leave the site after viewing a single page if they’ve found the information they need on that one page, and had no need or interest in going to other pages.

If you’re a food blogger whose traffic comes primary from search engines or Pinterest, you’re likely getting people to one particular post, not the homepage, and they find everything they need on your post then scurry off to make your delicious recipe, that’s a win. (If they had to hunt around to separate pages to find the ingredients, the specific steps, instructions on serving sizes, cooking times, etc., you’d have a lower bounce rate but probably a pretty annoyed reader who wouldn’t share or pin your content for others to see).

If you’re a technology blogger who perfectly lays out the steps to setting up a new blog, and your reader is able to take all of the information and put it into action without having to go to other sections of your website, you’ve probably written a pretty amazing post.

Click here to read about what makes a good bounce rate and what “time on site” is all about in Katy’s original post!

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