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The Importance of Understanding a User’s Intent For Better SEO

Search intent is the science of working out what a user is actually wanting to find by analysing their search term. Literally their intent while searching. Identifying the intentions behind a user’s search can be incredibly difficult, after all we all think differently and approach questions from different points of view. However, deciphering it can have a huge impact on your SEO and even increase the quality of your keyword research. Here are a few things to think about when trying to develop your content to better match your ideal customer and their needs. 

How to Identify Intent Types

As we all know you can find pretty much anything on Google. There are endless possibilities when it comes to formulating queries. Luckily, though there is a finite number of categories they could fit into, making our jobs slightly easier!

Informational Intent

It is said that more than 80% of searches are formed with informational intent, suggesting that people have a lot of questions and are looking for answers, fast.

Keywords with informational intent can be incredibly useful to develop content around. For example; searching for “How to do a keyword research” returns results which are predominately content which answers this question. Identifying informational intent in your keywords could, therefore, help you engage with potential customers when they’re looking for the relevant information; helping to increase the chances of them looking at your content or post.



Transactional Intent

Online purchases are increasing significantly year on year, meaning that transactional intent within keyword researches is constantly becoming more and more essential.

When searching online, users are specifying product names and including buying keywords such as “buy,” “discount” and “best price.” Identifying these in your keyword selection can be pivotal for your PPC campaigns as well as your SEO, as Google can recognise from these keywords that your ads have transactional intent and can produce shopping ads as a result.



Navigational Intent

Navigational intent involves searching for a particular website or page. An example of this could be entering “Innovation Visual” into the search bar rather than entering the URL into the browser’s navigation bar. This query will return as the top result.

Using branded keywords can increase your organic SEO rankings, drive relevant traffic and increase conversions. With this in mind, it is vitally important for your brand to look the part in the search results, by this we mean that the results should return useful content about your brand that gives the user a clear synopsis of your business and the right landing page from which to navigate further. 

Should We Be Diving Deeper Into The Structure of Search Queries?

The answer is yes. Through the use of mindful grammar and focused vocabulary, we are able to make well-informed assumptions about the minds of users and target more specifically. Optimising your pages with the right keywords and the users' intent in mind can drive more relevant traffic to your site, reduce your bounce rate and increase page clicks, which of course can all lead to having higher conversion rates.



A final point...Verbs and Nouns, Why They Are  Important

Over 70% of search queries include nouns. Proper nouns like “London” or “Jane” will often make up to 40% of this statistic. This, therefore, suggests that when formulating a query, users are searching with the intent to find a very specific answer.

So, carrying that assumption forward, whenever you’re creating content on your site, it’s vital to include proper nouns wherever possible in your keyword selection to make your content as relevant as it can be to your target audience. Having proper nouns, for example, “Brighton” in your keyword selection localises the search and makes it more specific to the user. An example of this would be “Buy a Kitten in Brighton” compared to “Buy a Kitten.” By using the proper noun of “Brighton” you lower the search volume and give a more relevant and localised search; helping to give users what they want, quick, easy and straightforward answers!

Again, using kittens as an example (because who doesn't love a kitten?), verbs are also just as important in search queries. Searching for “kittens” will return primarily return cute pictures and videos of kittens. However, introducing the verb “buy” suggests why you want to look for kittens and helps Google to find you kittens for sale rather than just cute kitten pictures.

Verbs and nouns not only help us with localisation but can also help us to identify which intent type category users fall into.



Still Unsure?

If you feel a bit stuck or have questions about search intent and would like help with improving your SEO, why not get in touch with one of our team members? We'd be delighted to help you with your enquiry.