There’s more to starting a business these days than launching your website and waiting for the sales to roll in. As many would-be entrepreneurs have discovered, though it’s easy enough to design a website, or build a store selling through eBay or Amazon, the toughest part of making a profit is connecting with your target audience. One of the most valuable tools in your arsenal for ensuring long-term sales and brand growth is SEO.
Most companies know that when they launch their online business, they also need to develop a strategy for aligning their content and campaigns with the search engines. Unfortunately, the rules around SEO change so often, that it’s difficult to know which strategies are really going to work. Today, we’re going to look at search intent, and how it influences your appearance online.
The Types of Search Intent
Search intent is something that’s gained a lot of attention in recent years. As the search algorithms have evolved to help customers find the right solutions to their problems, intent, or the purpose of a user’s search has become increasingly essential to delivering the right results, or links. Businesses that want to improve their results online can use each kind of intent to direct their content marketing strategies and SEO, therefore improving results from conversion focused content. The four types of intent include:
- Navigational: In this kind of intent, the customer or user is looking for a specific site or page online. If someone looks for the name of a website on Google, for instance, it’s evident that they’re trying to find something specific.
- Informational: The user is looking for an answer to a specific question. This includes things like, how, why, what, and where a certain solution might be.
- Transactional: The user wants to compete an action (a conversion), not just restricted to purchases, but any action that’s beneficial to your company, such as submitting a form to arrange a consultation, or book an appointment.
- Commercial: When customers are looking for an opportunity to access things like free versions of products, and other items. This is a kind of intent that’s more obviously connected to purchases and consumerism.
Often, a content marketing and customer connection strategy will include content crafted to address all kinds of intent.
Using Intent to Your Advantage
Knowing how to connect with your customers online means knowing how to not just speak their language but also how to navigate the search engines. Understanding how the algorithms assess your website and the content you post to determine how you rank online is an essential part of building your digital presence. The more you learn about the intentions of your customers and how they search for solutions like yours, the easier it will be to capture their attention. Of course, intent is just one part of a strong SEO strategy. The more you develop your website and build your content marketing efforts, the more you’ll learn about how you can boost your rankings in the digital world.