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Acing user search intent
Why did the Beatles break up? Why did the chicken cross the road? Why did the world pandemic system fail? What came first; the chicken or the egg? What happened to the dinosaurs? While some questions, we are most certain about, others we will likely never find out. Search Engine Optimization isn’t rocket science.
Search engines increasingly focus on finding out the intention of the user which basically translates to search engines trying to give you what you want by first understanding. Organizations want to succeed and ensure that they have a firm understanding of what customers search for. As the best practices for SEO continues to evolve and mature ostensibly at the speed of light. Hence, understanding and creating content with search intent in mind is critical.
What is search intent?
Search intent or keyword intent is the primary motive behind people conducting a specific search. The key is to figure out the answer to a simple question: “Do they want to reach a specific website?”
The user intent or search intent determines the goal or intention of an internet user. With every passing year, search engine giant, Google, has evolved significantly in understanding the search intent of internet users. Google can now recognize the semantic meaning, the context, and the user intent of a search query.
Search intent means answering the why following a search query.
Why did the internet user perform a search?
This could indicate if the users want to find something or go somewhere or buy a product or service or simply learn something. The plan is to present users with the most relevant result for their query.
Understanding the user search intent
The development of good and holistic content satisfies user search intentions. High-quality content tailored to the expectations of internet users measurably influences the users’ purchase decisions. Search intent can be primarily classified into four categories:
The informational search intent is displayed when an internet search user is looking for information. Traditionally, informational searches did not include product search but with the right kind of keyword integrations, users can be diverted towards making a purchase by creating value for a product in the information.
With the navigational search intent, the internet user is looking for a specific page on a specific website. The users already know where they want to go. It’s presumably quicker and easier for them to search for the page than to type the entire URL into the address bar.
For a marketer, the transactional search is a kind of sweet spot where the internet user is looking to make a purchase. Internet users are already in purchasing mode. In a lot of cases, internet users already know what they want to buy but do not know where to buy from. Cashing on such internet users is the key.
The commercial investigation is the best kind of internet user search intent out there. The internet search user is in the open market, looking for a specific product or service but is yet to make a final decision.
This is the perfect opportunity for providing them with the right information at the right time for the right products. The users are more likely to look for product information, reviews, and comparisons. This is not just the perfect opportunity to introduce them to your product but also try an upsell.
Concocting the user search intent
Search intent is often apparent from the words of the query itself.
For example, if the user enters the keyword “buy Macbook.” It becomes obvious that the internet search user is in the market to buy a computer (transactional). Contrarily, if someone searching for “how to eat with the help of chopsticks” is looking for an answer (informational), this is where the keyword “modifiers” come into play.
Using a keyword research tool like Ahrefs Keywords Explorer, marketers can use modifiers to filter for keywords accompanying a specific user search intent when doing keyword research. The same can be done when looking for commercial investigation, or navigational keywords. Find relevant information about products and associate with the product to optimize your product search results to show up every time a user searches for your product.
On the foot-note
Behind every internet search, there is an intention. With machine learning becoming more effective over time, coupled with internet search engine algorithms, it has become more evident to figure out the user intention for your business, to be discovered by users on the web. Best practices and technology appear to evolve at a very fast pace. Yet, continuing to advance towards a mutual aim – understanding what the user wants to see.
Check out our blog for more information on the topic.