Bounce rate as I defined in what is bounce rate in Google Analytics is the percentage of your website’s visitors who leave your website after only visiting one page. It doesn’t matter how much or little time which they spend on that one page which they first arrive at; if they do not click on an internal link to visit another page on your site then that counts as a bounce. This begs the question about SEO bounce rate and whether or not does it affect how a page ranks in Google if say the bounce rate is too high. The answer is yes but mostly no.
SEO Bounce Rate
At first glance, SEO bounce rate could be a very effective metric for determining the value of a web page or website. Most webmasters strive to get their bounce rate as low as possible as I explain in how to lower bounce rate, because a high rate suggests that your site isn’t offering a lot of quality content, hence people are leaving your site without visiting more than one page.
The larger answer is no, SEO bounce rate is not a significant ranking factor. The reason is that there are too many reasons a good and quality website can have a high bounce rate. If someone visits a web page and finds exactly what they wanted to learn on that first page, there is little reason for them to visit another page. In that case, you can have a very high bounce rate while having a very satisfied visitor-base.
Alternatively, say that you have a website which ranks so well in the SERPs that you not only rank atop Google for the keywords which you are targeting, but you’re also ranking well for keywords which you never intended to target and aren’t 100% relevant to the content of your site. This happens frequently for well ranking sites and consequently those sites will receive a lot of untargeted traffic which will undoubtedly exit that website just as quickly as they arrived there after not finding what they want.
This is of course not that webmaster’s fault, so SEO bounce rate cannot be given a great deal of credibility in terms of negatively affecting a website’s ranking.
Just the same, for your own purposes you want to get your bounce rate as low as possible to ensure people spend as much time on your site as possible, so check out this post on how to lower bounce rate.