Reduce Your Bounce Rate In One Second: Font Size

dukeo.com

Agonizing over your bounce rate wondering what you can do to keep readers on your blog? Pulling your hair out trying to find the right colors, the best images, the perfect theme? Killing yourself trying to create the best “killer content” on the Web? Relax… Take a deep breath… And change your font size.

What Is Bounce Rate?

If you have Google Analytics installed on your blog (and you should) then you’ve probably seen that little number for bounce rate. To explain it in rough terms: it’s the percentage of visits made of a single page views versus visits made of several page views. In other words, every time someone enters your blog and leaves from the same page your bounce rate increases. The lower the number, the better.

Your bounce rate is definitely important but it’s not your most critical metric. People leave your site for all sorts of reasons, and the amount of traffic you have also skews the number. For example, let’s take a look at what happens with a brand new blog.

Let’s say your blog is just three days old with only two posts. Yesterday two people visited your blog. If one person read the one post he landed on and then left your blog and the other person read both of your posts then you’d have a bounce rate of approximately 50 percent.

That’s not a great bounce rate and you might be tempted to try to improve it, but it’s also not realistic to worry about it at this point. That first reader may have left your blog because his phone rang or his boss peeped over his shoulder – reasons that are beyond your control. Until you have lots more traffic you don’t have enough information to make it worth your time to worry about it.

As your daily traffic grows it becomes easier to see where people are entering and exiting your blog. You’ll be able to see the posts that are attracting attention and those that are causing people to click away. Again, it’s important to remember that you can’t always control your readers. Don’t fret over day-to-day figures. Instead, look at the big picture.

What Does Font Size Have To Do With It?

People leave blogs for all sorts of reasons, but if your content is consistently stellar then it’s time to take a look at the over-all appearance of your blog. One of the things that drives me away is the color scheme. I spend a lot of time every day working on my computer and these old eyes just can’t take bright, flashing, neon colors. And I’m sure there are plenty of others out there just like me. I don’t care how great your article is, if it hurts my eyes to be on the page, I leave.

Which brings us to font size. If you’ve tried everything else you can think of to improve your bounce rate, take a second and increase your font size. It may be that your content is just too tiny to read. You’d be surprised at the difference between a size 12 font and a size 13.

But don’t just change it and run. Take a few minutes to adjust font sizes on headings and sub-headings, if necessary, and maybe look at widening your content box or re-sizing your images. Now that your font is bigger it may throw other page elements off balance.

You and I spend all day long working on our computers and we’re familiar with using that ctrl + function to increase font size, but most of our readers don’t have a clue. Take one second and increase your font size and you’ll see an immediate improvement in your bounce rate.

Stéphane Kerwer
Article written by Stéphane Kerwer (1995 Posts)
Bonjour from a french guy. My name is Stéphane Kerwer and Dukeo is my blog. I do most of the heavy lifting in here but from time to time, you may see some guest posts. To receive updates from Dukeo, follow us on Twitter or like us on Facebook.
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14 Comments (Add one)

  1. Dom
    Dom

    Don’t know about this, but it is worth a try.Adding a topic relevant video is also a great way to reduce bounce rate.

    1. Sté Kerwer

      Let me know how this works for you Dom

  2. Ann Marie van den Hurk
    Ann Marie van den Hurk

    This is the best advice I’ve read in a long time for website. Something as simple as font size can make a huge difference. Now I need to go figure out how to do that in my WP temple… My font needs to be bigger.

    1. Sté Kerwer

      Thanks for your comment Ann Marie.

  3. Jennifer
    Jennifer

    Thank you! I hate small text. I hate that my car’s controls are hard to read. I hate the 5pt text on shampoo bottles. I hate having to pull out my glasses for every teensy thing. And I’m only 50!! But I never thought of increasing the text size of my own blog. Thanks for the advice.

    1. Sté Kerwer

      Thanks you Jennifer. For some reason, a lot of people do not apply common sense to blogging. I think it’s always good to remind them :)

  4. Kyle
    Kyle

    Interesting! I just jumped onto my blog and did a ctrl+ and I liked it! I use wordpress and always just post with the “paragraph” font size for body text. WordPress is a little whack because you have to mess with your template css to change the actual font size, but I switched to 13 so we’ll see if what happens!

    1. Sté Kerwer

      Kyle, your font size looks good. Let me know the results you’re seeing.

  5. Tufail Shahzad
    Tufail Shahzad

    Which is best font size?

    1. Sté Kerwer

      Tufail, I know that people are always looking for exact answers, but it really depends. Try different font sizes and see what fits your blog and makes your visitors happy.

  6. Carolyn

    Excellent point, Ste. Often I am reading websites on my iPhone so a small font size can be unreadable. Also, I have seen blogs with light gray typeface that I just can’t read on a smaller screen.

    Clear, dark type is definitely the way to go!

    1. Sté Kerwer

      Thanks for sharing your personal experience Carolyn!

  7. @osoocio
    @osoocio

    Ill look into this. i have a similar reaction to colored type on a colored background . It sometimes works with dark type on a pastel background. I am presently using a red on black scheme but my font

    1. Sté Kerwer

      Same goes with white text in black background. For me it makes really painful to read because of the contrasts in creates.