If you are working a web page do not publish it before it is ready. We were recently doing SEO analysis on one of our client blogs, Super Parent Mom , and found an interesting scenario with page drop off.
She had created a few pages, not blog posts, but she was not ready for the public to see them yet. She went ahead and published the pages, though. She wanted to be able to easily review the pages; which is why she published them. She thought that because they were not added to the nav bar that no one would find them and all would be fine.
However, considering that she has really great SEO built into her site people were finding those pages. When they happened across the page, excited and ready to read; they would find blank pages or pages that were incomplete. This would confuse the reader, and the reader would promptly leave the site. As a result, her bounce rate started to increase and those readers are likely not going to return.
So the moral of this story is to leave pages and posts in draft mode until you are really ready for the public to see them. These may cause a bit of inconvenience for you but that is far better than losing readers.
Bounce Rate: Bounce rate is when a visitor to your website leaves after only visiting one page. If someone does not click on another page of your site then they are bouncing away.
Why is this bad?
You want visitors to be engaged and spend more time on your site. If you are a blogger you want them to read more than one posts. The goal is to engage the reader and bounce rate is a great way to measure engagement.
Website Bounce Rate Notes:
Bounce rates with a website is a bit more tricky so you must keep the goals in mind. If your main call to action and your goal is for a potential client to call you for service then you may be happy with a higher bounce rate. So imagine that you are a plumber and your goal is for people to find your website, see your phone number and call you for immediate service then you would measure your success by phone calls.
In this scenario keep in mind that you want to provide plenty of resources for people to learn more about your company and services and while some people may click thru to read more it will likely not be the norm. In the end the additional pages may just provide more SEO opportunities and more entry points for people to find your phone number. We always explain to clients that a website with more quality pages will bring you greater success.
So what has been your experience with SEO? Do you have any tips that you can share?