How to optimise your blogs for user search intent

DSM Digital School of Marketing - user search intent

The age-old question that every digital marketer asks themselves is what is the answer that a searcher searching for? If you want sustainable, as well as valuable, search traffic to your website it’s essential that you provide these answers.

Sustaining search intent is Google’s underlying goal. However, algorithms haven’t always kept up with what users are looking for. Proxies such as backlinks as well as keywords have, for a long time  and remain to be, stand-ins for the probability that a web page will fulfil user intent.

Optimising for user intent is the long play

This is applicable for Google as well as your website. A page which is well-matched to user intent can outpace those that optimise mainly for search engines in the search process as well as after the click. Optimising for user intent is an SEO strategy which focuses on making users happy as opposed to hitting a particular keyword density or winning exact-match anchor text.

So what exactly is search intent?

The term ‘search intent’ refers to the ‘why’ behind a search query. In other words, search queries answer the questions:

  • Why did the individual make this search?
  • Do they need to learn something?
  • Are they considering making a purchase?
  • Are they looking for a particular website?

Also known as user intent, search intent is the main goal that a user has when inputting a query into a search engine. Conventional types of search intent include the following:

  • Informational:

The searcher is searching for information such as the answer to a simple question such as “who is the president of South Africa?” or, alternatively, something that necessitates a longer as well as more in-depth response such as “how does blockchain work?” This being said, not all informational searches are put together as questions.

  • Commercial:

The searcher is looking to buy a specific product or service however he or she has yet to decide which solution is right for them. These searchers are most likely looking for reviews as well as  comparisons as they’re still weighing up their options.

  • Transactional:

These types of searchers are looking for a specific website. They already know where they want to navigate to. It’s probably merely quicker as well as easier for them to Google the address as opposed to typing the entire URL into the address bar. These searchers may also be unsure of the exact URL.

Nevertheless, to translate the “make users happy” mixture into something executable, it is necessary for you to know a few things:

  • How Google (and others) define search intent,
  • How to evaluate your target keywords for intent, and
  • What to do with search intent data.

How to evaluate your target keywords for intent

The term ‘keyword intent’ is one of the most critical aspects of paid search. Without having a keen understanding of the intention behind visitors’ searches, even the PPC campaign which is the most well funded will almost certainly fail.

By leveraging keyword intent for use in intent-driven marketing, advertisers can increase traffic to their websites as well as  also attract more qualified prospects, which drive more sales and generate more leads.

In addition, high intent keywords have high commercial intent. As we’ve mentioned above, these keywords indicate a strong intention on the part of the searcher to perform a transaction, whether it is to buy something, make an enquiry about a service or, alternatively, another type of action which has a strong possibility of leading to a later sale.

We make use of keywords for practically every aspect of digital marketing. Until not so long ago, neural networks as well as deep learning were not available in order to assist search engines to understand the semantic meaning as well as intent behind user searches. They simply had to make use of links as well as exact-match keywords in the hope that their results were relevant enough for users. However, as search engines become more sophisticated, it’s becoming easier for digital marketers to optimise their campaigns.

Get in touch with the Digital School of Marketing

Want to learn more about digital marketing courses? Have a look at our advanced digital marketing course for more information.


DSM Digital School of Marketing Digital Marketing course registration