High Bounce Rates? Your site stinks in 50 milliseconds or less

How fast do people say “your site sucks”?

Anyone? Bueller? Bueller……  Bueller?

50 Milliseconds.  That’s right, if someone thinks your site stinks really bad, they’re gone nearly instantaneously. No over/under the fold issues, no figuring out which color submit button works best. None of that will matter, as you’ve got 50 milliseconds to whet their appetite or “see ya!”

Research done at Carleton University by Dr. Gitte Lindgaard, shows that people make very quick judgments, and can decide to leave a site in just a fraction of a second (1/20th to be exact). You better have some of the basic aesthetics at least partially right, or you’re going to lose them fast.

You can read the 2005 article here.

To sum up: The article suggests that people immediately react to how they feel when the website first comes up. That feeling essentially helps them to quickly get a understanding for what the rest of the website is going to be like.  If they don’t immediately get a sense of “love” in the first 50 milliseconds, they are gone.

Get your site stats out and take a look at bounce rates for your main landing pages. If it is high (will vary for every site and for traffic sources), then you need to make some changes, and make them fast.

Here are a few quick areas to focus on:

  • Site colors – Make sure your site don’t have offensive or shocking colors. (Unless you’ve radically tested)
  • Header – It is important to test headers that draw people in to your site. Give them a sense of understanding through a small graphic representation that tells a quick story of what you can do for them. (The Bait)
  • Headline – Make a very interesting headline that that will grab their attention, and keep it. (Set the Hook)
  • Copy and Page Layout – Work on building a simple layout that is easy to follow. (Reel them in!)

Make sure you’re constantly checking your stats, and running solid tests.

If you have a high traffic site, and are interested in knocking your profit increase  out of the park, sign-up for a free landing page comprehensive site analysis. Conversion Voodoo specializes in landing page optimization for high traffic websites.

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