What is Website Retention Rate and Why Does it Matter?

There are numerous metrics used to determine the performance of a website and user or website retention rate is simply one of them. 

It’s important that you understand all the metrics pertaining to your site so you can determine how your content, information, and site performance is being received by your audience. 

In this guide, I’m talking specifically about website retention rate, why you need to understand it, and how you can improve it. 

What is Retention Rate?

Website retention rate is a metric that determines the effectiveness of your website as a whole. The retention rate represents a percentage of users who stay and return to your website after their initial visit. 

So, a high retention rate can be a sign of loyalty or satisfaction from your users. A low retention rate indicates that you might need to make certain improvements in your customer experience process to make them want to stay longer and come back more often. 

Why is Retention Rate Important?

Retention rate is pivotal in all aspects of business because it directly impacts the sustainability of your site over time. 

There are four main reasons why website retention is important:

User Satisfaction – A high retention rate tells you that people are interested and attracted to the content on your website. Whatever you’re doing is providing them with a pleasurable experience and likely the information they want to receive. 

Cost Efficiency – If you’ve spent any amount of time in business, you know that the cost of acquiring a new customer is much higher than retaining an existing one. 

Brand Loyalty – Loyal customers will spend more money and tell their friends about you. If you retain customers, it’s a sign that they are loyal to your brand and those are the customers you want. 

Conversion Rate Optimization – Higher retention often correlates with higher conversion rates. Engaged users are more likely to take desired actions, such as making a purchase, subscribing to a service, or signing up for a newsletter.

How to Improve Website Retention?

This is all great but useless if you don’t know how to apply it. User retention will vary based on your industry by 30% is generally considered “good.”

Here are some ways to get that number up:

User-Friendly Design

Not everyone is super tech-savvy so you want to keep your website simple but designed for your industry. If you’re an ecommerce store that sells custom walking canes, you wouldn’t design the site the same as you would for an audience of computer programmers. 

user friendly design

Clear CTAs 

Conversion optimization is a great way to capitalize on the audience you already have. Use compelling calls to action with loud buttons and trust signals to make it super clear to your audience what they need to do to convert. 

High-Quality and Relevant Content

You want to make absolutely certain that every person who lands on your website intends on being there. You can do this by publishing relevant content that targets keywords your audience searches for. 

customer service options

Improve Customer Service Experience 

Offer responsive and effective customer support when people need help. If someone can’t figure out how to buy something or what to do on your site – and you’re not right there to help them, they’re going to leave and never come back. 

Final Thoughts

If you’re struggling to retain customers on your site, don’t stress it too much. Making only a handful of changes can help you convert more of your existing audience and this not only looks good in your wallet but it can help your visibility with the almighty Google as well. A/B test different changes and see what works for you! 

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