User search intent is the intention that a person has while searching for something on the search engines. It may be explicit or implicit, but it’s always there. This intent determines how relevant your website will be to them. If you don’t have a good understanding of what people mean when they type in a keyword, then you’re not going to rank well on search engines like Google and Bing.
Analyzing search terms allows you to understand what a visitor to your website is looking for.
Knowing this information will help you to tailor the content on your website to provide visitors with exactly what they are looking for, increasing the likelihood of them becoming a customer.
The more relevant your content is to the search term entered by the user, the more likely you are to feature in their list of top results (known as organic search results).
There are five types of user intent:
The majority of searches done on the internet are for information only and don’t intend to transact straight away. It is important to provide your users with the information they are looking for without having to scroll through multiple pages of search results.
The algorithm used by Google to determine user search intent is based on several factors including:
You can identify the user intent in a number of ways:
Optimizing for user intent is a concept that is highly encouraged by Google. In fact, Google has been focusing more on this factor for quite some time now.
The idea behind this concept is to show users exactly what they are looking for when they perform a search.
This means that you shouldn’t try to trick the search engine results page (SERP) by cloaking or displaying different content to users and Google than what is available on your website.
The reason why this is important is that it can cause you to lose your ranking and even get banned from the SERP altogether. Instead, optimizing for user intent means that you should give users what they are looking for and nothing else.
If your website isn’t relevant, then it won’t rank as well.
Let’s look at an example,
Say you own a bakery and you want more people to find your bakery online so that you can increase sales. Let’s assume for this example that you have done your Keyword Research and have learned that people are Googling the following:
Bakery near me
Cupcakes shops near me
Open 24 hours bakeries near me
This means that people are looking for a bakery nearby that sells cupcakes and is open 24 hours.
If you optimize your website for this term, then your website should definitely rank well because it is catering to the search intent of the person searching.
This doesn’t mean that you can put any old content on your website and hope that it ranks. Instead, you need to create unique content that matches what users are looking for when they search for these terms.
New customers Research has shown that up to 70% of users who perform product or service research on the web will buy from the first three sites they look at. It is important to provide your users with the information they are looking for without having to scroll through multiple pages of search results.
Optimizing your content with the user intent in mind involves creating pages that accurately match what a person is searching for.
This means you need to keep your eye on what keywords you are targeting and then create content that focuses on providing solutions to the problems people are looking to solve when they make those searches.
For example, let’s say you own a pool company and you sell swimming pools in Portland.
You might want to create content that addresses a number of questions that people in the area tend to ask about when buying a pool such as:
Instead of targeting keywords like “pool cleaning” or “pool supplies”, which have a lot of competition, you are targeting the questions people ask when they are looking to buy a pool.
These searches are much easier to rank for.
Another way to understand the user intent behind your keywords is to use keyword suggestion tools like KWFinder or LongTailPro.
These are designed to tell you the search volume and competition level of different keywords.
You can then group them into categories based on high search volume and low competition, low search volume, and high competition, and so on.
That will give you a good idea of where to focus your efforts.
In the case of our example above, you might find that there is a lot of competition for swimming pool supplies and swimming pool service keywords but not so much for swimming pool maintenance questions.
Finally, you can also take a look at what your competitors are writing about.
If they are ranking well for keywords related to swimming pool service, there is obviously an opportunity to provide more content on that topic.
Once you’ve done all that, it’s time to start creating content.