searcher intent

Why Is Search Intent Crucial for SEO?

Search engine optimization (SEO) is a technique for attracting more people to your website. Higher visibility in search engine results drives more traffic, which in turn increases conversions and encourages repeat business. Using the proper keywords in your article will bring more visitors to your website. However, considering search intent can improve your site’s rankings, conversion rates (i.e., the number of people who buy your products or sign up for your newsletter), and even repeat visitors. You’ll learn what search intent is and how to optimise your content for search intent in this post.

What Is Search Intent?

The phrase “search intent” is used to explain the motivation behind a web search (also known as “user intent” or “audience intent”). A search’s intent is the driving force behind the inquiry. After all, anyone conducting an internet search is probably looking for specific information. Maybe someone has a query, though; maybe they want to know if it has been answered. Specifically, do they want to go to a certain website? Or, they may be looking for anything specific to buy, hence their web search. These queries are all common in the online user experience, but they often correspond to various points in the process.

Google has put in a lot of time and effort over the years to perfect its algorithm’s ability to understand people’s intended purposes when conducting searches. Google’s goal is to provide searchers with the most relevant search results based on their query’s specific terms and the user’s stated intent. To ensure your post or page is seen, it must correspond to the user’s search query.

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4 Types of Search Intent

Intents to search can be broken down into a few categories. We’ll discuss the four that see the most action:

1. Informational intent

Example of informational search intent: screenshot of Google's results for search term tomato sauce

First, let’s talk about the value of information. People who are interested in learning more about a topic conduct many internet searches. This data can be on anything; from the weather to teaching kids to search engine optimization techniques. Persons with an informational intent are looking for answers to specific questions or additional details on a certain subject.

Understand that Google’s ability to interpret intent extends much beyond the presentation of search results that only answer questions about a given term. It understands that, for instance, people who search for “tomato sauce” are more interested in finding recipes than learning about the sauce’s historical significance in the kitchen. It is smart enough to know that when most people type [Mercury], they actually mean the planet, not the element. Google is aware that it is helpful to include videos and images for some search phrases, such as [how to make a bird feeder].

2. Navigational intent

Example of navigational search intent: screenshot of Google's results for search term Yoast

In contrast to informational intent, navigational intent refers to the purpose of the search itself. Individuals that have this goal have chosen to visit a certain website. If you type [Facebook] into a search engine, for instance, chances are good that you’ll end up at the Facebook homepage. The goal is to have your website turn up in results for a Google search for your company’s name.

To reiterate, it is important to remember that if your site is the site people are seeking for, then having a high ranking for a navigational phrase will be useful. A Google Analytics plugin helped us get high search engine rankings for that topic a few years back. However, that did nothing to increase visits to our website. Users who conducted a search for “Google Analytics” were mostly not interested in our plugin but rather the Google Analytics website.

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3. Transactional intent

Example of transactional search intent: screenshot of Google's search results for IKEA PS 2014 lamp

In the third place, we have transactional intent, which is to buy something. Many people today prefer to shop for goods and services online and use search engines to locate the greatest deals. When a person goes online with the express intention of making a purchase, they have “transactional intent” in their search. This usually indicates that the shopper has narrowed down their options and is ready to make a purchase decision.

 4. Commercial investigation

Example of commercial investigation intent: screenshot of Google's results for search term best washing machines 2021

Some people use the internet to prepare for a purchase in the (not-so-distant) future. Which washer do you recommend and why? Which search engine optimization plugin do you find to be most useful? These people also intend to make a purchase, but you’ll need to work a little more to convince them. Commercial investigating intents is the common name for these kind of searches.

Keyword intent

We can deduce user intent from the words they use in their search queries. The converse is likewise true of this situation. You can improve your chances of being discovered by folks with relevant search intent by crafting keywords that include intent-specific words.

Intent-specific terminology: what does it mean? Transactional keywords, on the other hand, typically include terms like:

  • buy
  • deal
  • discount
  • product names

To give another example, informational searches can (but don’t necessarily have to) contain words like:

  • information
  • how to
  • best way to
  • why

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How to Optimize Your Content for Search Intent

If we don’t want you to know this, why are we telling you? For the obvious reason that you want to cater to your visitors’ needs when they arrive at your site. You shouldn’t direct individuals looking for info to a product page. Not right away, at any rate. They’ll probably run away from you. In contrast, you can lose a customer who is interested in purchasing your product but instead finds one of your more in-depth blog pieces. Here, you want to direct them to your store’s webpage for the specified item.

It’s smart to optimise your product pages for economically motivated keywords. If, say, you run a pet supply store that also sells vitamin supplements for dogs, you may optimise a product (category) page for the query “purchase dog vitamins” to attract customers. It’s possible that you’ve written another piece on the topic of vitamin administration. You might target users who are looking for information by making the article more relevant to their search for “how to feed vitamins to my dog.”

Research Your Audience’s Search Intent

Understanding a user’s motivation when conducting a search might be challenging at times. And it’s possible that two people searching for the same thing will have (somewhat) different intentions. Fortunately, search engine result pages (SERPs) provide a clear source for determining which purpose is most appropriate for your terms. Learn how to leverage intent-based search results pages to your advantage when writing content.

You can also directly query your target audience to learn more about their search intent. You might create a brief poll with questions about people’s search habits and have it automatically display on your site. That should help you learn more about your target demographic and what they hope to gain from your content. It’s important to strike a balance between providing useful information and being annoying when using pop-up windows.

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Make sure the material you’re publishing is relevant to your audience’s search phrases and their search intent. Keep in mind that people will be reading your post or visiting your website for certain reasons, so make sure that material they find there is useful. Gain the top spot in Google’s search results for your company’s name. When consumers are still considering their alternatives, you should give them content that will assist them make a good choice. However, direct potential customers to your product’s sales site.


Parvesh Rana

Parvesh is the Content Editor for Bulletin XP. Here at Bulletin XP, she covers news about trending topics in the television and entertainment industries. Moreover, Parvesh likes to dance and listen to music. She also finds time in her hectic schedule to relax and spend time with loved ones.

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