Understanding a Searcher’s Intent: Why Keywords Are Just the Beginning

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When selecting keywords for your site, you need to look at more than simply what terms are used the most. After all, SEO is about more than driving traffic to your site; you want to drive traffic that will convert. Google and other search engines are also shifting results based on the perceived intent of the searcher. How can you leverage search intent to drive more targeted traffic?  Check out the video below to learn more.

Video Transcript:

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Searcher’s intent is the holy grail of search marketing. If you understand why people are searching and the different types of terms that they’re searching, you’re going to be able to create content that’s going to drive them in the right direction. Now, this is the key for really driving relevant search traffic.

A lot of times in SEO we look at very broad terms and while those aren’t necessarily bad to look at, we need to look at why people are searching for products and services in the first place and then get an understanding of the types of terms and keywords that they’re using in order to find us online.

I’m going to break this down into three different types of keywords or topics. These are the different ways that people search online and they’re not created equal, they’re very different and you’re going to see that one of them is the majority of what people do online and some of the others are things that we should focus on in order to make sure that we can get transactions. That way we can really get the people that we want to our site and convert them into leads and possibly business.

The first type is a navigational keyword. A navigational keyword is a keyword where people know already where they want to go. Let’s say you want to a book a plane, plane ticket somewhere and a specific brand that you want to fly. Let’s say you’re going to New York City, you want to fly Jet Blue.

You might do Jet Blue, New York City flights and that’s going to land you on the Jet Blue website are probably one of these other thousands of different travel sites that we have. Now. These are for people who have specific intent. They know what they want to do, they know where it is. They might’ve forgotten the URL or too lazy to type in the Url, so then they’re going to type in something. A very, very specific, they’ve already got an idea about, now this traffic value is very high because these people are familiar with your brand. These are people who’ve probably been to your website before. They’ve probably purchased something from you before and they’re looking to purchase something. Again, this means you need to own these navigational keywords. If you’re not focusing on your brand name, if you’re not focusing on the types of keywords that drive specific navigational traffic to your website, you could be missing out on very high value traffic.

Informational Keywords

The second type is informational. Now this is 90% of searches online. The other 10% is broken up between transactional, which we’ll get to in a minute and navigational, which we just spoke about. Informational tends to be a little bit more broad. These are where not necessarily looking for a transaction. They’re looking for information. You know, why is the sky blue? How do we get more traffic to my website? Where is the closest Mcdonald’s? Those types of questions where people are asking for information. What is SEO? How does it work? Those types of things. Now this traffic values medium, it does have intent and these people want to learn something, but they may not be in a position to buy already. Now the navigation, the informational keywords, they kind of work in stages too.

You’ve got people in that sales funnel. If we talk about that we went to attract, convert, close, delight. You made people to attract stage where they’re getting broad information and then you might have people in that middle stage, you know what we call the buyer’s journey as a consideration, where their consideration considering options and those can be informational keywords as well. What’s the difference between Hubspot and Marketo, and Hubspot and Sharp Spring, or Hubspot and Keep, like what’s the difference between these specific tools? So these are where people are trying to find information. It doesn’t mean it’s not valuable.

This is where you need a bulk of your traffic. So understanding those questions is important. This is where using tools like Answer the Public can be very helpful. And Serp Stat has a really cool tool in their keyword research where it shows you these types of questions and then even going into Google search and typing in a broad keyword and looking at the box of people.

Also ask for that can uncover a lot of these informational keywords and queries that you should be focusing around in order to understand the intent of your website searchers.

Transactional Keywords

The last one is transactional. These are people who are ready to take a step forward with you and your business. Now, this doesn’t necessarily mean that they are ready to pull their credit card and give you money yet, but this could mean signing up for a new account, giving you their email information, doing some sort of transaction with your business. How do we sign up for a Facebook account or a Twitter account? How do you build a YouTube channel? Things that are going to get people to take that conversion action would be a transactional type of keyword.

If you want to have a good SEO strategy and you want to drive people with great content that meets their intent, you need to understand the difference between each one of these types of queries and how you need to construct content around them.

If you need help with your content marketing strategy, you have questions about what we’ve talked about here today. Please let me know. You can either comment below or send me an email directly, which you can find my email in the about us inside of our channel. If you’ve got any questions we’re here to help you out. We don’t want to leave you on a string. We want to really help make sure that you could put this stuff into practice. Thanks again for watching, and as always, Happy Marketing.

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