does Avg. time on site and bounce rate affect rankings ?

24 replies
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Dose google uses data from google analytics such as avg time on site and bounce rate in the process of ranking websites ?

what is the decent avg. time on site and bounce rate ?
#affect #avg #bounce #rankings #rate #site #time
  • Profile picture of the author simonbuzz
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    Yes they do...
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  • Profile picture of the author mahmoud747
    ok guys
    but i just watched this video from google webmaster team but it's over a year ago
    what do you think ?

    And if things are changed now are avg. time on site and bounce rate a primary factors which have a great effect on rankings or just a limited effect ?
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  • Profile picture of the author StoneWilson
    I will give a yes, but just like other enements which can influence rank, nobody knows how much weight they have. But of course, comparingly low bounce rate it better.
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  • Profile picture of the author Natlex
    Originally Posted by mahmoud747 View Post

    Dose google uses data from google analytics such as avg time on site and bounce rate in the process of ranking websites ?

    what is the decent avg. time on site and bounce rate ?
    That depends on a search query, all you can do is try to make sure you have the best possible out of the top 10. Either way, if it's not a factor right now it will be in the future for sure.
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  • Profile picture of the author amritrr
    Yes, it is important. If you have a higher bounce rate than it means that the people visiting your site are not finding it helpful enough and finding the content irrelevant. You may get dropped for those keywords or search terms.
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  • Profile picture of the author NestZone
    one of our site had a high percentage of bounce rate for a certain month, and in that same month the site had a PR1 for certain keywords, in the coming month it was pushed to page 2 for the same keyword, so i think google does punish for bounce rates.
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  • Profile picture of the author goodmast3r
    Forum has low bounce rate, so they tend to rank higher?
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  • Profile picture of the author Incoan
    Probably does. However, you can still rank with backlinks having 80 bounce rate and less than 1 minute on the website. Then, you can change your website a bit.

    I'll say jokingly that decreasing my bounce rate from 88 to 82 didn't affect my rankings at all . I'll later try to get it to 60.

    In any case, this can be done later.
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  • Profile picture of the author jpizzle
    Oh wow, I never considered bounce rate to be a factor in rankings but it makes sense. Google looks to provide the most relevant information to its users. So a site with a high bounce rate is likely a site that isn't relevant to the search or visitor.
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  • Profile picture of the author timpears
    So out of all the posts, I think we had one that said it does not affect it, and that was Matt Cutts that said it. But everyone still claims that it does affect it.

    I guess you just can't convince some people, no matter what proof you have. Pretty pathetic. It is no wonder we have so many wives tales in the SEO arena. I don't know what to believe any more. If Matt Cutts can't convince you they don't use it, then who the hell can.

    Is Google lying for some reason?
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    Tim Pears

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    • Profile picture of the author BlakeM
      Originally Posted by timpears View Post

      So out of all the posts, I think we had one that said it does not affect it, and that was Matt Cutts that said it. But everyone still claims that it does affect it.

      I guess you just can't convince some people, no matter what proof you have. Pretty pathetic. It is no wonder we have so many wives tales in the SEO arena. I don't know what to believe any more. If Matt Cutts can't convince you they don't use it, then who the hell can.

      Is Google lying for some reason?
      Hate to break it to you, but not everything Matt Cutts says is infallible.

      That said, I'm not sure G knows your bounce rate if you dont have analytics installed, but I could be wrng on that one.
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    • Profile picture of the author Kurt
      Originally Posted by timpears View Post

      So out of all the posts, I think we had one that said it does not affect it, and that was Matt Cutts that said it. But everyone still claims that it does affect it.

      I guess you just can't convince some people, no matter what proof you have. Pretty pathetic. It is no wonder we have so many wives tales in the SEO arena. I don't know what to believe any more. If Matt Cutts can't convince you they don't use it, then who the hell can.

      Is Google lying for some reason?
      I think the better question is, if Google can determine bounce rate, why WOULDN'T they include it as part of their rankings? Seems like a pretty good metric for measuring relevancy to me.

      Google (and Matt Cutts) claims they now use over 200 onpage criteria to rank pages. Bounce Rate may as well be one of them.

      Why would Cutts lie? It's possible they want to protect their algo. It's also possible that Cutts isn't lying, but he either doesn't know the truth or he is mistaken.
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  • Profile picture of the author Jenny4u1
    I will enjoy high bounce rate; if bounce rate is high unique visitors will be more. So, I will concentrate on only traffic. More traffic more money. That's all.
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  • Profile picture of the author Sohel Parvez
    "Bounce Rate", according to Google Analytics, is "the percentage of single-page visits . Bounce Rate is a measure of visit quality and a high Bounce Rate generally indicates that site entrance (landing) pages aren't relevant to your visitors.
    So, Avg. bounce rate is good i prefer.
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  • Profile picture of the author timpears
    You know, I was concerned about my bounce rate at one time. It was hovering around 90%. But I was bringing in $100 to $200 or more per day in AdSense. So should I have been concerned? Were my visitors coming to my site and seeing an ad they liked and clicked on it before being on my site for more than a few seconds? If that was the case, then GOOD! The point of my site was to generate advertising income, and it was doing that pretty well.
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  • Profile picture of the author Nero Arcnumé
    Since there is no actual proof out there, you'll have to experiment, rely on other people's findings or go with your intuition.

    Personally, I don't see why bounce rate should matter. Bounce rates depend on what kind of site it is. If I'm running an informational site with various articles surrounding a main niche, I hope that I can provide my visitors with the information they need with an article (and consequently provide them with interesting Adsense for them to click on). That means the bounce rate might be high but doesn't mean the content is not relevant.

    Perhaps a combination of bounce rate, time spent on site, the keywords the visitor used and the keywords Google links with your page, sure. But still that doesn't really provide a conclusive result. Maybe a high bounce rate and time spent on site less than 5 seconds and even then automated calculations might not be correct.

    So, while many might say it matters, I can also see why Matt Cutts says it doesn't matter and can accept why it's not included in the criteria (if it's not).
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  • Profile picture of the author sputnik
    The Bounce rate definitely has an effect on rankings!

    I have seen this effect myself on one of my sites. By just changing the content to achieve a much lower bounce rate I moved from page 2 to page 1 for that keyword. (without any additional link building)

    They used it before but I found since the Panda Update the bounce rate and the time a users spends on the site has a much higher impact on rankings than it did before.

    It all makes sense: It is best to let the visitors decide if they like what they see or not. If 85% of visitors bounce it simply means they don't like what they see on your page and didn't find what they are looking for.

    However, what you need to keep in mind that for rankings not the bounce rate of one page is relevant but for a keyword-page combination in a particular country:

    What that means is one particular page may have a high bounce rate for one keyword. Visitors coming to the page from a different keyword may like it better.
    Also I noticed that bounce rate for certain pages can differ substantially from country to country. When comparing these to Google rankings I also found that the very same page tends to rank higher in countries where its bounce rate is lower!!!
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  • Profile picture of the author eurekapsycrille
    According to Matt Cutts in Google Webmaster guidelines, it does not affect the ranking of a website. That's all.
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    • Profile picture of the author Stephen Crooks
      Okay, this debate rumbles on.. Mr. Cutts states categorically that Google Analytics data is not used as a ranking factor. I have no reason to disbelieve that and surely he wouldn't lie. However, if you are Google, you do not have to have access to Analytics data to know bounce rates and other such metrics for a web page, it is readily available to them through other tools and measurements they can utilize.. Therefore it doesn't mean that these things are not used as ranking factors in the big mix of other factors.
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      • Profile picture of the author Whataguan
        I think that most of the folks on this string have it totally wrong. Google does not use GA data. If they were out-ed for lying on that it would be a catastrophe and a PR nightmare for them. It would also mean that they would lose a lot of GA customers.

        What they do have access to is search data. Duh you might say, but I am referring to a very specific kind of search data.

        If a user searches for something, visits an organic listing, and then appear back at Google 15 seconds later conducting the same search then Google can tell that they probably did not find engaging content. That is how they can measure bounce rate and time on site.

        Google already uses this kind of data in its paid search programs. There is no reason why they would not use it for SEO...
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