Bounce rate: Mobile and desktop e-commerce

The impact of 4G and internet have had a huge impact on the retail market. As the photo shows, the numbers have been constantly rising (Telegraph, 2014). Online sales and mobile sales have been rising as can also be seen in the rising levels of  investment in advertising. This shows how important and effective online sales are.


The photos below compare mobile vs desktop e-commerce spending. As seen from the photos, mobile spending is lacking behind desktop and laptop PCs e-commerce spending. Mobile e-commerce can be expected to surpass desktops in a few years



E-Commerce and Bounce Rate

Bounce rate is the percentage of a single visit on a page or web sessions (Optimize Smart, 2017). Bounce rate is the number of visits in which a person leaves your website from the landing page without browsing any further. 

Photo 1 shows the metrics of mobile shoppers in tablets, desktops and smartphones. Mobile shoppers accounted for 75.9% of all US digital shopper (EMarketer, 2015). MarketLive also found that nearly 56% of traffic to retail sites came from nonmobile sources. In addition, so did three-quarters of their revenue. Tablets are typically associated with having  a digital shopping use case closer to that of PCs than smartphones. Tablet accounted for almost as much revenue share as traffic, which can be seen in Photo 1. But smartphones only accounted for about one-third as much revenues as traffic, supporting the position that smartphones are more commonly used for browsing and research activities than for actually completing a purchase.

US Retail Ecommerce Metrics, by Device, Q4 2014

Photo 1.

Photo 2.















By looking at the other metrics, such as bounce rate, tablets and smartphones had higher rates. This could be a possibility for companies to work more on the bounce rates of their smartphones.



The average bounce rate for a website is around 40-60% (Innermedia, 2015). According to this, around half of the web visitors are likely to leave the site straight after entering. High bounce rate suggests that you’re not attracting the right site visitor or the user experience is not satisfactory (Patel, 2015). Improving this figure is easier than trying to get new traffic (Innermedia, 2015). The importance of reducing bounce rate also means more engaged visitors and a greater chance of conversion (Eubanks, 2013). Improving bounce rate doesn’t have a solution, it’s a combination of actions (Innermedia, 2015). It can anything from your site speed, your design, or even your main traffic sources.

When comparing bounce rates on devices, bounce rates are almost 10% higher on mobiles than desktops. This can be affected by  the go’ behaviour, interruptions, to poor 3/4g/wifi signal and slow load times on mobile phones. Because mobile e-commerce has been on the rise in the past years, companies need to make sure they are catering to mobile users and offering them the best possible experience when people are using tablets or phones to access the sites.

Google Analytics is a great and effective tool to help reduce bounce rate therefore increase conversion and sales (Optimize Sales, 2017). For more information on how Google Analytics metrics can help you: CLICK HERE!


How to improve the mobile bounce rate?

Companies need to put more emphasis into optimization.‘Optimised’ means that you provide a responsive template. Reducing the mobile bounce rate should start with checking your mobile load speeds and looking at how user friendly your mobile version really is. You can look at user journey and popular entry pages to find out what people are really looking for when they visit your site on mobile, and make sure that you make it as easy as possible to access popular information. This means offering totally different menus on mobile and desktop versions of your site. If people are trying to buy online but your site doesn’t offer the best experience for them, it may be worth building an app to cater to their needs in a more convenient format.


Bounce rate in mobile apps

Bounce rate in a mobile apps is more difficult to calculate. The application and meaning of a bounce rate can differ from the traditional web application. Firstly, there are different ways to calculate a bounce in an app. A bounce on an app could mean that a user initiates one server call (usually, an app requires two server calls to succesfully ‘launch’ the app).  E.g. when you open an e-commerce application, a launch event is recorded, and then the first page page is loaded.

First way to count a bounce in when someone opens the app, lets it load to the homepage, but then does not go any further.  If someone opens the app, does not wait for the homepage to load (could be caused by high load time), and then closes the app, could also be counted as a bounce. This also depends on what kind of behaviour is wanted to be measured: app performance vs. content.  A bounce is effectively looking to measure if a user is provided with the right content at the right level upon first load (just like a website!). If a user bounces, that will tell you 1 of 2 things. 1 – the content that you’ve provided is not the right content for your audience. 2 – your app load time is too long and causes users to quit.




Marketing Charts (2015) Breaking Down Mobile vs. Desktop E-Commerce Spending, by Retail Category [Online] <>(Accessed 17th of April 2017)

Emarketer (2015) Mobile’s Still Far Behind Desktop for Retail Ecommerce Revenues [Online] <>(Accessed 17th of April 2017)

Eubanks, N. (2013) Reduce Bounce Rate: 20 things to consider [Online] <> (Accessed 17th of April 2017)

OptimizeSmart (2017) 11 powerful methods to reduce bounce rate in Google Analytics [Online] <> (Accessed 17th of April 2017)

Innermedia (2015) 20 Common Digital Marketing Problems [Online] <>(Accessed 17th of April 2017)

Patel, N. (2015) 13 Ways to Reduce Bounce Rate and Increase Your Conversions [Online] <> (Accessed 17th of April 2017)

Telegraph (2014) Infographic: online shopping goes mobile [Online] <>(Accessed 17th of April 2017)


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