Creating a tighter fit between your page keywords and your content


Tired of Making Chump Change Online?

I’m sure every guy would freak out if girls they thought were hot all of a sudden take off dentures or peel away make up to reveal nasty acne.  Nobody likes getting fooled and no one likes the feeling they got deceived.  The same goes for your site’s visitors.  The number one cause of HIGH BOUNCE RATES is the bad fit between keywords used to land on your pages and the actual content of your pages.  As we wrote earlier, there is increasing speculation that Google’s SERP rankings are factoring in bounce rate in determining content quality.

Here are some easy steps on how to reduce bounce rate by creating a tighter fit between page keywords and content:

Step #1:  Install Google Analytics

Google Analytics is probably the best analytic tool out there.  Bar none.  While some haters say they’d prefer a realtime solution, in light of the feature density and power of the existing Analytics configuration, we think these haters are expecting too much.  Be thankful for the Godsend Google’s already given us.  Analytics gives a blow by blow page by page, fully segmentable, and easy to export report of the data you need to optimize your site.  Install Google Analytics by first getting a GMAIL account then install Analytics.

Step #2:  Install the Analytics code on your site and Wait at least a week

Using analytics effectively isn’t like ordering a pizza.  You have to wait.  Why?  It takes 24 hours for the code to gather information.  Don’t go crazy analyzing the info of a 24 hour period either.  Give it at least 7 days to get a realistic snapshot of your site’s performance.  Focusing on just one day might not give you a representative sample of your site’s traffic blend.  A week should flush out all the juicy  keyword variations used by your site’s visitors to navigate to your site.

Step #3:  Get a full report on the Content Overview Section

Go to the Content overview section and get a full list.  This page shows you which page gets the most visits.  Fully list it out by setting row display to 500.

Step #4:  Pick a page and click ENTRANCE KEYWORDS

Click on a page and there will be a link to Entrance keywords.  Click on that.  You need to see which keywords are being used to find a particular page

Step #5:  Filter your Keywords by Relevance

Once you have a full list (again, you can get the full list by showing 500 rows), click the EXPORT command and export to CSV.  Open the CSV with Excel or Open Office.  Filter out keywords that are OBVIOUSLY not related.  Think THEMES.  Are the words all thematically related?

Step #6:  Load the relevant keywords into a Keyword Analyzer

Using Market Samurai or other keyword analyzer, find out the following information:

  • SEO traffic – How much organic search volume does the keyword generate?  Market Samurai allows you to search based on daily  or monthly traffic
  • SEO competition –  This is very important.  This metric shows how many existing pages are out there that target or rank for this keyword

WARNING:  Make sure your settings are set to “EXACT” since partially matched keywords might give you a wrong impression and you end up chasing “ghost traffic”.

HINT:  Don’t get too excited about keywords that have a high search volume.  Most of the time, they have a high competing page value as well.  Look for the right mix of LOW COMPETITION and DECENT search volume.

Step #7:  Once you have a list of  keywords you want to target, cross reference with bounce rate

Now that you know the potential value of the keywords on your page, check their bounce rate.  Analytics shows you the bounce rate for each keyword.   Analyze why they are bouncing.

Common causes:

  • The page doesn’t talk about the keyword in depth
  • There’s no thematic coherence
  • Shallow content
  • Badly formatted/confusing page
  • Intimidating formatting

Analyze the cause and look for patterns by looking at past weeks’ bounce rate and page view path.  For additional help on this stage,  click here

Step #8:  Once you have a list of  keywords you want to bounce less, pick a strategy

The list above shows common causes of high bounce rate.  Now, fix the issues they raise through the following

  • Adding more graphic breaks to your page layout so the content is easier to find and digest
  • SEO copywriting:  Write more detailed but easy to follow materials on high value keywords
  • Make your themes easier to find by adding an introductory section that lists out the themes of the page

Step #9:  Make a Notation on Analytics regarding your page optimization

Analytics lets you make an annotation on a date.  This sets up a marker where you can compare the results of your optimization with prior results.

Step #10:  Keep tweaking

Sometimes the best way to fix bounce rate is to create new pages the visitor can click to instead of just bouncing out.  Pay careful attention to your stats and keep experimenting until you keep bounce rate down to a level you are comfortable with.

Remember this:  Use every downturn or “crisis” to your advantage.  Instead of getting worried needlessly by any hiccup in traffic, use  the emotional energy to create a sense of urgency to motivate you to do what you need to be doing all along–tweaking and experimenting with your site to produce optimal results.

Photo Credits:  Jurvetson

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