How to Setup Adjusted Bounce Rate for Google Analytics in CAOS

Having a high Bounce Rate in Google Analytics could mean one of two things: either you have a really boring website or people found what they’re looking for and leave. It depends per website and you can’t just assume one or the other. To find out what’s going on, you can use an Adjusted Bounce Rate.

What is Adjusted Bounce Rate?

Adjusting your Bounce Rate in Google Analytics is done by sending a second event after a certain period of time. The first event being the pageview itself.

By sending the Adjusted Bounce Rate (ABR) event you’re basically telling Google Analytics: “Hey Google! This user has been on this page longer than X seconds/minutes. Which means that technically it shouldn’t be counted as a bounce, am I right!?

Why use it?

That’s easy: more accurate statistics!

A user that ‘bounces’ is not taken into consideration for stats, such as:

  • Session duration,
  • Sessions, and
  • Pages/session.

In other words, a visitor might take a few minutes to read your post, leave, come back a few days later, but you’d be none the wiser. You’d just have a few hits, not providing you with any useful information.

Setting Up an Adjusted Bounce Rate in CAOS for WordPress

If you’re not convinced yet, perhaps Rob Beirne from Moz can, but if you’re ready for action, you’ll want to know how to set it up. Right?

Lucky for you, it’s easy to setup Adjusted Bounce Rate in CAOS. Here’s how:

  1. The Advanced Settings section of CAOS' option screen with adjusted bounce rate highlighted.Assuming you have CAOS installed (if not, get it from or Github), go to Settings > Optimize Analytics.
  2. Close to the bottom of the Advanced Settings section you’ll notice the ‘Use adjusted bounce rate?‘ option.
  3. Set a value (in seconds) and click ‘save changes‘.

What value to set?

Now you must be wondering: what value should I set?

Well, think of it this way.

How much time do you think it takes for one of your visitors to decide whether he/she found what he/she was looking for?

A website sharing coupon codes could decide on 15 seconds. A visitor would enter, scan the page for the coupon code with the highest discount, copy it and leave.

As an opposite, a personal blogger could expect a visitor to carefully read the full post before leaving. In that case e.g. 120 seconds (two minutes) would be considered reasonable.

I decided on 45 seconds for, because I write informative, yet scannable, easy to summarize posts.


Today I’ve shown you how to configure an Adjusted Bounce Rate for Google Analytics using CAOS for WordPress. I’ve helped you to decide on a value in seconds and why you should use it. Do you use it? And if not, why not? Let me know in the comments!



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5 thoughts on “How to Setup Adjusted Bounce Rate for Google Analytics in CAOS”

  1. Hi there, I am using your CAOS together with the MonsterInsights plugin. Is there a way to use the adjusted bounce rate option? Thanks in advance

    1. Yes! As a matter of fact there is.

      Navigate to Insights » Settings » Tracking » Advanced » Custom Code, and add the following:

      setTimeout("__gaTracker('send','event','adjusted bounce rate','page visit 20 seconds or more')",20000);

      The 20 and 20000 (milliseconds) are examples.

  2. Hey there, this is great, thank you! I’ve set it up in CAOS and it seems to be working great. What has me puzzled now is that I’m seeing far more users than page views in the new stats. I see events under “Tracking” and “Adjusted Bounce Rate”. How do I interpret these correctly in terms of users and page views? Is each event an additional user, for which no page view is recorded? Other stats don’t seem to make sense anymore either, e.g. negative sessions per user, pages per session or average session duration. Have I missed something I was supposed to set up in GA? I’ve checked the help section but not found this info. Any tips would be much appreciated! Thanks in advance!

    1. Hi Cheryl,

      Thanks for notifying me of this issue. I’d have to check into this to make sure it’s not a bug.

      Could you share your settings with me and send them to me using my contact form?

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