Map bounce rate

The bounce Rate of a web page is a simple calculation and a useful metric. In essence it is the percentage of sessions where a particular page is loaded first and then subsequently exited from, potentially with other pages navigated through in between.

This concept is well understood and provides a level of insight into how a user enters and exists your web presence:

  • If you have a fashionable one-page website, your bounce rate will likely be quite high. But you can also account for this.

  • If you have a particular blog post which gets a lots of traffic, but it has a high bounce rate, there is likely a problem with how you encourage your users to enjoy the rest of your website.

  • If you find that your pricing page has a high bounce rate and minimal conversions, maybe you are not describing your value well enough, or are wildly expensive?

At Sparkgeo.com we have started talking about the idea of bounce rate with regard to web maps. We were wondering how many times a map is loaded but never touched. In many cases that may be fine, such as on the maptiks front page where the map is purely an indication of context and in fact all interaction methods are locked. But, if you are trying to use the interactivity of the map to tell your story or sell a product, then you have a huge problem. A problem that you may never know you have!

We've now built map bounce rate directly into the Maptiks dashboard:

Our interpretation of this idea is that:

map bounce rate is the percentage of map sessions where there are no user activities (pans, zooms, clicks) detected.

This is a simple metric which tells you an essential truth about your map:

beyond the page being loaded, is your map actually being used, or is it being ignored?