High bounce rates can hurt your search engine rankings. A bounce is a visitor that takes a quick look and then returns to the search engine to try the next search result. A high bounce rate is an indication that tweaks need to be made in order to more effectively engage the visitor. Google and other search engines take bounce rates into consideration in their algorithms. Why include a website into the top 10 search results when the visitors come right back to try again? The relevance of the site for the keyword search terms comes into question when that happens.
Your ultimate goal is to convert a visitor into a loyal visitor or customer. A loyal visitor or customer is someone who visited your website, likes it and found the information they were looking for. They then returned more than once, probably bookmarking the site in their Favorites. After a few visits they made a purchase, requested information or clicked through on an affiliate link, and they will probably do so again in the future. To accomplish this the site must be user friendly. It must be easy to navigate, easy to search and demonstrate to the visitor that they will find what they are looking for from the home page forward.
Real customers are already actively searching for what you sell on search engines. They are looking for information to help them make a quality purchase decision. They need to be converted into a customer. Effective analytics can provide the conversion ratio information needed to tweak your web site for improved results you can see on the bottom line.