User intent is a term that was coined back in 2002 by an AltaVista employee named Andrei Broder. An understanding of the concept of user intent is crucial to understanding the thought process of potential customers as they type their keywords into the search engine. Specialist agencies offering Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) packages now take full advantage of this idea. |
Andrei Broder identified three distinct search types hinting at stages of user intent; informational, transactional and navigational searches. User intent effectively describes the state of readiness of consumers in terms of making a purchase – where they are in the purchasing decision.
Informational searches are the first port of call for users looking to learn some initial information about a product, or how to go about doing something. An example might be “how to record music” or “typical recording equipment”.
This type of search represents the first stage of consumer engagement. At this point users are only looking to gain some knowledge and are unlikely to be ready to buy, so conversion rates for these keywords are low. Nonetheless, SEO packages devised by experts will often capitalise on these low competition keywords, since they put your brand or site at the forefront of the user’s thinking as they progress their searches towards making a buying decision.
When the searcher is ready to become a customer, they will make a transactional search. They have identified what kind of product they are looking for and therefore might search “best quality microphones” or “cheap studio mic” to browse through the options they see first.
It goes without saying that you want your site or product to be amongst the first to pop up and therefore this is where you should prioritise your initial SEO.
Navigational searches refer to when a user has a particular brand or site in mind. These users have made up their minds about where to spend their money. They are out of the reach of further marketing content and there is no benefit to directing your SEO here. They search, for example, “Audio Technica AT2020 Microphone” because they know exactly what they want.
The distinction between these three types of search should be used to inform your keyword choice and SEO decisions. In order to take full advantage of this concept, optimise keywords and maximise traffic, it is advisable to invest in one of the available SEO packages offered by professional digital agencies.
An understanding of user intent is an important aspect of SEO today and proper application of the principle can place you ahead of your competition. Get in touch with the experts and you could be climbing Google’s rankings before you know it.
Kit Jones is a professional consultant at LeadGeneratorsDigital, a successful online marketing agency focusing on a variety of digital strategies including content and SEO marketing. If you’re looking for an SEO package for your businesses that will help boost your Google rankings, conversion rates and overall quality of your site, this could be the company for you.
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