There are many things in the digital marketing landscape that need to be in order for your content strategy to become a resounding success. Search intent in simple words is the primary goal a user has while searching for a query on any search engine. For instance, when a user looks for a query, he/she enters a specific keyword on google and clicks on the information that the user was looking for and finds relevant. This means that the search intent was satisfied and successful. Satisfying a search intent is the primary goal for google which automatically makes it one of the bases of any SEO strategy. In this article, we will discuss the link between search intent and SEO, and further, shed light on how you can optimize your SEO strategy using search intent as a tool.
The Importance of Search Intent:
As we all know that it is the priority of any SEO strategist to rank its content in the top results of Google. Yes, we are talking about the coveted page 1 of the Google SERP’s (Search engine result pages) that shows the users the top results. It is very common in the digital marketing world that sometimes even well-planned and articulately designed content fails to live up to its expectations and does not receive the traffic that we all thought it would. This is where the concept of search intent plays a crucial part. As it may happen sometimes that although your content is indeed top-notch it may not fall under the intent that the user has searched for and therefore it does not appear in the results.
Expand your reach:
A better understanding of the relationship between search intent and SEO can also do wonders for your content marketing strategy. We all know while running a business how difficult it is to reach and get a message across to your potential customers. However, in this digital age and with the invention of the internet reaching new customers even if they are in the other corner of the world has become very easy. Your search for any type of business query on google and it provides you with a list of enterprises and personals related to that business. It has now become a kind of an online marketplace allowing us to expand our reach to phenomenal levels. The only thing left for us to do now is to make sure that our content is specific to various search intents. Focusing on matching search intents should be the utmost priority if we are looking to increase our chances of being more visible.
Google’s rankings are mostly based upon three factors which include, relevance, authority and user satisfaction. The understanding of these factors can help you better utilize your keywords to satisfy the search intents being posted by the users while also improving your overall rankings. These factors include Relevance, Authority and User Satisfaction.
The “Relevance” factor relates to the behavior of the users, if they find the information on your page relevant, they are less likely to return to Google in order to explore a different result. This will impact the click-through rate and bounce rate of your webpage to go higher. Hence, increasing the relevance of your page.
The second factor is “Authority”, most of the site’s authority is connected to the backlinks or the internal links of other webpages related to the site. However, having a strong linking strategy is also important in letting Google know that you have almost all the topics covered and that it can help satisfy the user’s intent.
The third factor, “User-Satisfaction”, is pretty self-explanatory actually. It is about determining whether or not the content you are using provides value? and will it be enough to satisfy the user’s intent? If your content falls short in either of the two parameters, RETREAT!
Types of search intents:
Now there may be an infinite list of things that you can search about on the internet, these searches primarily fall into four categories.
These are the type of searches that are seeking to extract information regarding any subject. This could be in the form of a how-to guide, a recipe or a detailed explanation about anything. It is one of the most common search intents out there. As there are a billion things in this world that need explaining and for each query a trillion answers.
Transactional searches as it goes by the name are looking to make a purchase of any product, service or subscription. In this case, the users mostly know what they are looking for and they are past the phases of initial research. The user directly writes the name of the brand or the products such as “buy supreme accessories” or “shop Armani suits”.
It is a very common practice that whenever we intend to make a purchase, we thoroughly analyze the variety of options that are available to us on the table before making the final decision. These analyses include investigations and comparisons of the other options available such as their prices, user reviews, and other specifications. For example, these types of searches include Apple vs Samsung, Pepsi vs Coke, WordPress or Wix for blog and etc.
Navigational searches refer to the searches where the user is looking to reach a specific website. Some time’s the users find it easier to write the name of the website on Google in order to access it rather than writing the whole URL. This type of search is also very useful in reaching the exact page you are looking for rather than navigating your way through the website.
Example of navigational searches include:
- Spotify login
- Brandians careers
- Brand designs contact.
Determining the search intent:
Now that we have covered all the important aspects of search intent and how important they play a huge role in any SEO strategy. It is also very important to discuss the parameters that would help you determine the keywords you should use in order to fully satisfy the user intent or the search intent. The use of keyword modifiers can be very helpful for this purpose, there is also a range of highly efficient keyword research tools available in the market as well. These research tools carry filter features as well, making it easy for you to include certain modifiers or phrases.
Another way to determine search intent is by researching the SERP’s. Type any keyword you want to have an idea about on Google’s search bar and the result page will come up with a number of results. After analyzing the results, you can easily tell which keywords are the most appropriate and which are not. This approach will surely bring you closer to the most prominent intent. However, note that there are multiple results related to one keyword or search intent so looking only at the SERP’s might not be enough, also keeping in mind that the rankings in the result pages can also fluctuate.
The optimization of search intent:
Matching the metadata and content type with the intent:
After determining which keywords, you are targeting with certain pages, the next very important thing you have to make sure of is the full optimization of search intent and SEO and for that, there are a few things that you will need to keep a track of. Updating your page’s metadata can be a good place to start. Update the title tags H1 and H2s to reflect your specific keyword targeting.
Study and Analyze your competition:
As it goes with most businesses, you must need to fully understand and analyze your competition before you wish to be a part of it. This theory can be implemented while you are determining your search intent and SEO strategy as well. It will be a good idea to have a look at the other top-performing pages. The analyses of how they are formatted? What’s their tone? What are they missing? Or which Points do they cover? Can help you further in reformatting or creating new content in a better way.
Format the content according to SERP features:
Just as the SERP helps in indicating the favored search intents, similarly it also tells you that which content specific to its search intents are ranking well. What important contents does it carry to match and satisfy that search intent and how they are formatted. This will tell you where you are lacking in terms of content and formatting and later, they can be updated depending on the need and the required changes.
We hope that the above information sets you on the right path while determining your search intent and SEO content. As we all know that creating optimized SEO content for specific search intents is one of the most complex tasks out there. Be sure that you understand the search intent before creating the SEO content around it. Use specific modifiers while discovering new terms and make sure to provide valuable, complete and quality content at all times.