Most people who click don’t read your webpages ​

SUMMARY: Your homepage is arguably the most important page of your website. It’s estimated that visitors take only 3-5 seconds to decide if they are going to go deeper in your website. Here are the mistakes that brands make with their website homepage.

According to Time magazineIf you’re an average reader, I’ve got your attention for 15 seconds, so here goes: We are getting a lot wrong about the web these days. We confuse what people have clicked on for what they’ve read. We mistake sharing for reading. We race towards new trends like native advertising without fixing what was wrong with the old ones and make the same mistakes all over again.

Chartbeat looked at deep user behavior across 2 billion visits across the web over the course of a month and found that most people who click don’t read. In fact, a stunning 55% spent fewer than 15 seconds actively on a page. The stats get a little better if you filter purely for article pages, but even then one in every three visitors spend less than 15 seconds reading articles they land on.

As pageviews have begun to fail, brands and publishers have embraced social shares such as Facebook likes or Twitter retweets as a new currency. Social sharing is public and suggests that someone has not only read the content but is actively recommending it to other people. There’s a whole industry dedicated to promoting the social share as the sine qua non of analytics.

But the people who share content are a small fraction of the people who visit that content. Among articles we tracked with social activity, there were only one tweet and eight Facebook likes for every 100 visitorsThe temptation to infer behavior from those few people sharing can often lead media sites to jump to conclusions that the data does not support.

When our company looks at web metrics one of the first things we do is look at website bounce rates. Most are way too high and marketing people don’t understand why. Here are the reasons we have found for high bounce rates:

1ne: You’re trying to do too much on your homepage. Your homepage is not a billboard to communicate every brand message. It should be designed to “talk” to your website visitors.

2wo: Your homepage looks like a TV ad. Marketers love eye candy, but website visitors don’t.

3hree: Too many Links/Choices. Providing too many choices to the users is not advised since it can confuse them and make them leave your website. Make your users navigate easier on your site and increase the odds of focusing them on the Call to Action by keeping the number of choices short. This applies especially when the visitor lands on the page from an Adwords or PPC advertisement.

4our: Not optimizing your Landing Pages. Redesigning the Landing Pages of the website by taking into account the results that A/B testing and the feedback from the users is absolutely necessary in order to improve the conversion rates. You should also have multiple landing pages based on your keywords as one message doesn’t fit all market segments.

According to recent data marketers are planning to spend more on content marketing, but they ignore the fact that today’s consumers are overwhelmed with content and just don’t have the time to read all your content.

About richmeyer

Rich is a passionate marketer who is able to quickly understand what turns a prospect into a customer. He challenges the status quo and always asks "what can we do better"? He knows how to take analytics and turn them into opportunities and he is a great communicator.

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