Difference between bounce rate & exit rate

I have been asked on a number of occasions what the difference is between bounce rate & exit rate, especially now that Google Analytics is so widespread. Indeed many people I have spoken to believe both exit rate and Bounce Rate mean exits from your page / site. Well that is true to a certain extent the difference being that the exit rate differers slightly in that the exiting visitor may have visited other pages on your site before leaving.

Bounce Rate is the percentage of visitors that visit a page on your website and don’t visit any other pages. For example someone may come in to a page via a search engine and then go to another site without visiting any of your other pages :-(

The Exit Rate on the other hand is the percentage of people who have left the page but would have previously visited other pages. The figure is worked out by the percentage of visitors that leave your website from a page based on the number of visits to that page.

If your Bounce Rate is high and the average time spent on the page is very low then perhaps it is time to worry. Users are more than likely scanning the page and haven’t found what they are looking for.

5 replies
    • Robert Dicks
      Robert Dicks says:

      Hi Christina this can be quite confusing and it baffled me for a while. There is a very good explanation of this on this page – http://groups.google.com/group/analytics-help-basics/browse_thread/thread/e52053806dd717e0

      The 2nd response on that page is quite interesting in that a page may have been viewed twice in a single session. Analytics has a single session time of 25 minutes I believe so if a person came on to your site viewed the page went to another page then went away but 20 minutes later revisited the original page and exited straight away it would count as one session! The your exit rate for that page would be 50%.

      You do want to get your bounce rate down but at the same time look at your analytics are they spending lots of time on the page reading content? Perhaps visitors are getting the content they need then leaving? What is the ultimate goal of your site if visitors are not reaching this goal then you may want to look into how you can move them through the site to your ultimate goal!

  1. Max Ivak
    Max Ivak says:

    Imagine you have 600 visits to the page.
    Group 1 – 100 visits are from google search engine, that means this page is a landing page in this case.
    Group 2 – 500 visits from visitors who visited this page after visiting other pages of your site.
    These two groups are totally different groups of visitors.

    Then, all 100 visitors form the first group exited your site after visiting the page. So bounce rate is 100%.
    But only 50 visitors from the second group (500 visits) exited your site from this page.
    Doing some math, we get exit rate = (100+50) / 600 * 100% = 25%.

    Read more definitions and diferences between bounce and exit rates here:

  2. Tech Leaks
    Tech Leaks says:

    According to my understanding, I think a 40-50 % bounce rate is acceptably a good bounce rate for a site. Have below 40 % and that’s excellent! and even the 60-70 % interval is, although not good, it’s not “the end of the World”, but above 75 %, above 80 % is terrible.Anything above 80-85 % leaves a terribly negative footprint and is a bad signal in the SERPs.


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