What Is Search Intent & Why Is It Important?
A search engine is “a program that searches for and identifies items in a database that correspond to keywords or characters specified by the users”, but where does search intent come in? Search intent is all to do with the reasons why people make a specific search, whether it is because they are looking for more information or to find an answer to their question.
In this post, we’re taking a closer look at what search intent is and why understanding this is key to engaging your target audience in order to increase purchases.
Why Is It Beneficial For A Business To Be Aware Of?
When posting online, it is important to ensure that you are aware of the way in which your potential customers are going to interact with your site. There is certainly a lot to consider since the layout of the site can have a profound effect on overall user experience. This is prevalent for both the content that you are going to post to target the commercial intent of your clients and the amount of content of your site you’re going to tailor to the information search intent of your users. It is important to have them in mind at every point and ensure that you are tailoring your website content with your target audience’s responsiveness in mind.
How Will This Benefit Your Business?
This will benefit your business in a number of ways. However, the most prominent way in which it will have a positive impact is that it has the potential to decrease the bounce rate of your site and help generate conversions. If you are tailoring your content to each of these different areas of search intent, you are more likely to generate sales.
What Is Search Intent?
Search intent refers to why users conduct a specific search. Whether a user is searching because they want to find an answer to their question, want to visit a certain website or are looking to make a purchase, Google ranks pages that are most relevant to the search term and search intent. As a result, it is paramount to ensure that you have content that is fit for purpose as this will help maximise the chances of your content being selected above the rest within the ever-changing algorithm.
What Are The Different Types Of Search Intent?
There are four different types of search intent. These are:
- Informational intent. Each day, millions of searches are conducted online by people seeking information. Whether it is information about the latest trends, SEO or the rise in social media marketing, users with informational intent have a specific question they want answered.
- Navigational intent. People with navigational intent are looking to enter a specific website. For example, people searching ‘Amazon’ are typically looking to visit the official Amazon website. This is important to consider as you will need to adapt your site to ensure that you are not only ranking for relevant keywords but also the key search term.
- Transactional intent. With the ability to search the web at our fingertips, many of us use the web to find the best price available for our intended purchase – and why wouldn’t we? Those who have the intention to make a purchase are considered to be ‘searching with transactional intent’.
- Commercial investigation. Commercial investigation refers to users who turn to the internet to undertake research before making a purchase. This could be because they want to find out more information about the product they are going to purchase or because they need slightly more convincing. This is the type of buyer that increases the need for up to date relevant content as this can lead to more conversions on your site.
How Can I Tailor My Site To Search Intent?
The simple answer to this ever-growing problem is data. If you are looking to track down the search intent that is present around your website, it is important to look at all the key elements that are present within your data. Although this may seem like a time-consuming job, this will make tailoring campaigns as well as creating content much easier with any future business endeavours.
What About Keyword Intent?
When it comes to understanding keyword intent, the words and phrases that searchers use in their queries provide valuable information regarding their reason for searching. People who use buzzwords or a word or short phrase in a specific context such as ‘buy’ and ‘discount’ are more often than not looking to make a purchase. Similarly, those who are searching for a specific product often want to add it to their basket or want more information before doing so.
When it comes to optimising your content for search intent, it is crucial to make sure that your page or post is suitable for the search intent associated with your target audience. While it’s important to not show people searching for information a product page as their landing page, it is just as important not to distract users wanting to make a purchase with lengthy articles. It is vital to keep information on landing pages as short and relevant as possible, allowing the user to move around the site freely to find the information that they need based on their search intent.
It is important to ensure that the search intent of each of the users of your site is encompassed within refreshing and relevant content that is fit for purpose without being full of irrelevant information. If your content is concise but provides all the information that is required when you are more likely to have a higher rate of success with the content that you are creating.
For more information about user search intent and how we can help you get the best possible results from your site, get in touch with a member of our expert team on 0800 088 6000 today.