Aug 23, 2011

Web analytics trends: more focused, less bouncing

A recently published study, reported on the KissMetrics Bl, is The 2011 Web Analytics Review. The source of the data is traffic trends from hundreds of thousands of websites across the globe, which have participated in Google’s ongoing study of web browsing behavior.

The study shows year over year differences of a three month time period: Nov. 1 2010 to Feb. 1 2011, versus the same time period a year before. The findings generally show:

* lower bounce rates (leaving from the first page) at 47% on average now
* shorter time on website, at 4:50 average now,
* and fewer pages viewed, down to 4.5 on average.

These figures make good benchmarks for judging engagement of one's own website, although realize that results will differ by country, category, and media mix.

Yet, the trends above hold true worldwide, and also in the USA. There are results for other countries in the report as well.

What might explain these trends, over such a large sample? It can well be the benefit of targeted advertising, combined with improvement of website navigation to be more goal oriented. With this combination, a website has more qualified leads, people with interest and intent, who come to visit. Those interested visits are quickly led to a goal page, or to the information they need.

There are also results broken out by source of website traffic. The most efficient source of all? Cost Per Click paid search, with the lowest bounce rate, the shortest time on websites, yet the highest page totals consumed. This is consistent with the interest of a search initiated customer.