A Look at Bounce Rate for Car Dealer Websites
Bounce rate is a significant concern for many car dealers, and rightfully so. It plays a significantly part in indicating your websiteís ability to satisfy the needs of itís users, and to some degree could even affect rankings. But in many cases, what may be considered a troublesome bounce rate could indicate that your website is actually driving leads.
Bounce is the percentage of visitors that visit a page of your website for only a few seconds before immediately leaving. The bounce rate of visitors from both organic and paid search can help to measure the quality of traffic your website or marketing efforts are bringing in. High quality traffic, such as those who are actively looking for a nearby car dealership, are less likely to bounce than someone who lives two states away that accidentally clicked on your ad or organic listing.
Ideally, the lower the bounce rate the better. As mentioned above, it means more qualified traffic is being sent to your site. But a low bounce rate is also an indicator of the quality of content you provide on your site. For example, if you were searching for used cars Nashville, you most likely would want to see a page with used car inventory, rather than a page about financing or some other unrelated topic.
Google defines bounce rate as follows from the Google Analytics product documentation:
Bounce rate is the percentage of single-page visits (i.e. visits in which the person left your site from the entrance page). Bounce rate is a measure of visit quality and a high bounce rate generally indicates that site entrance (landing) pages arenít relevant to your visitors.
While there are numerous rankings factors taken into account both on-site and off-site, itís also likely that ranking factors are also present from within the SERPs. Google is able to assess data from within their own results, and itís likely that this includes bounce rate. Bounce rate can also easily be assessed from Googleís popular products, such as the Google toolbar or Google Analytics. This metric can also be measured by how many times the same user visits the search engine.
How can my dealershipís bounce rate be lowered?
As already mentioned, a high bounce rate is generally a sign of two things. First, the quality of the webpage may be low, meaning the usability is poor or thereís simply a lack of quality, engaging content. Secondly, bounce rate may be a sign of unqualified traffic being delivered to the site, such as from a PPC campaign that needs more refined targeting.
Tailoring landing pages to a specific purpose or keyword will also be crucial for reducing bounce rate and improving conversion. For example, if someone is searching for new floor mats for their Toyota Tundra, why not send them to a designated Toyota accessories webpage rather than a generic Service page?
Refining your content and landing pages will not only reduce bounce rate in most cases, but you can also expect more organic search traffic, especially for low-volume, high-converting long-tail search terms.
Although bounce rate may play a very minor role in rankings, and generally can indicate low user engagement, the metric can often be misleading. While quality content remains crucial for any website, a car dealerís website serves a very utilitarian purpose. To that effect, many bounces can result from users immediately finding your dealershipís phone number to schedule a service appointment. Others may perform a search for Detroit Chevrolet dealers simply to get the address of the nearest Chevy dealer in order to check out their new car inventory in person. Although those two scenarios may result in bounces in your statistics, those users may have converted and become customers anyway.While bounce rate is an important metric, it can often be perceived as a bigger red flag than it should be as a certain amount of bounces are simply inevitable. When it comes to the car business, leads and sales are everything, and sometimes having what looks to be a high bounce rate may be an indication of your website doing exactly what itís supposed to be doing - driving people to your dealership.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Joe Kent is a writer for TK Carsites, an automotive website design and marketing firm in Orange, CA, that specializes in working with car dealers nationwide.