Ugh…this is one of those things that you’d think would be in some kind of manual, or that Google would make some kind of effort to tell you up front.
But Nooooooo. That’s just too damn easy.
Here’s the deal; I built this blog, installed all of my plugins, and I’m good to go. I also installed the Google Analytics code to the blog header (as instructed), and all was good.
Fast forward about a week, and I notice upon checking my analytics that my bounce rate is something insane like 1.9%! (For those who find that confusing, that means that 98.1% of my traffic visited more than one page of my blog.)
At first, I don’t think too much of it, because I wasn’t in the mood for the mental gymnastics of dealing with it at the time, so I let it go.
A few days later, I decide to check on my analytics again, and STILL the bounce rate is a stupid 1.9%! In addition, my page views were through the roof! Because this blog was new at the time, I was freaking out. (The crazy traffic numbers can be a false shot in the arm let me tell ya’.)
So I started researching “low bounce rate”, and was happy to find that I’m not the only person with this issue, and found variations of the answer in forum groups, but most were so over my head, that I should have hired a ‘tech translator’ to speed up my understanding of the issue, and I know that I’m not alone, so here it is in ‘plain speak’;
If your bounce rate is ridiculously low (a rock star bounce rate sits somewhere in the neighborhood of 30% – 50%. If yours is lower than that, you should do some checking), the issue is more than likely that you have more than one plugin tracking your analytics, and each one of them is sending Google your traffic numbers, which causes duplication on Google’s end. So it looks in your analytics like you have thousands of visits a day, when you really don’t.
The problem lies in the fact that we’re not generally aware of the plugins that are also tracking our analytics. Even the ones that are supposed to be tracking analytics (because that’s their main function), sends duplicate numbers to Google.
So…your Google tracking code is sending information to Google, if you’ve installed Social Warfare (for instance) it’s not just providing you with tracking information, but it’s sending tracking information to Google, IN ADDITION to what your Google tracking code is sending to Google. Thereby causing Google to double your numbers (or triple if you have more than one additional tracking vehicle), which also drastically increases the appearance of blog visits, AND reduces your bounce rate.
Once I figured out which plugins came with tracking capabilities, and removed those, my bounce rate and my traffic numbers went back to normal. Yours will too.
I hope that made sense 🙂
*Note to Google; Can you put a note somewhere in your analytics instructions, that tells us about duplicate tracking vehicles? It would save a lot of people a TON of headache. Thanks 🙂