It might seem farfetched to characterize a metric as sexy, but by the time you are done reading this article you'll be more than attracted to the metric and will mentally associate all sorts of possibilities between you and bounce rate!
It is quite likely that the biggest challenge for you is that you are spending tons of time, energy, and budget on Web marketing efforts, yet conversion rates (or ROI) are stuck in the 2-4% range.
You are trying really hard to figure out how to improve the performance, but you are stymied by the fact that there is ton of data and you have no idea where to start.
Ms. Bounce Rate to the rescue.
Bounce rate is a beautiful way to measure the quality of traffic coming to your Web site. It is almost instantly accessible in any Web analytics tool. It is easy to understand and hard to misunderstand, and it can be applied to any of your efforts.
So what is this mysterious metric? In a nutshell, bounce rate measures the percentage of people who come to your Web site—and leave "instantly."
Thought about from a customer perspective, rather than "I came, I saw, I conquered," the action is "I came, I saw, Yuck, I am out of here."
Your marketing efforts should yield more customers who are able to conquer (accomplish the task they are there to accomplish) and fewer who say yuck and leave.
Avinash Kaushik is an independent consultant who helps organizations unlock the power of web research and web analytics to create data-driven organizations. He is the author of Web Analytics: An Hour A Day (Wiley) and the Analytics Evangelist for Google. He blogs at Occam's Razor (www.kaushik.net/avinash/).