Why you Must Understand Intent When Working with SEO

You Must Understand Intent When Working with SEOSEO is exciting because it never stops changing. Google’s algorithm updates, new search innovations, and changes in user behavior means we must be adaptable to be successful. This doesn’t mean we should forego the basics while chasing after new strategies. Instead, there’s a process you must undertake here.

Optimizing for Intent

The foundation of a good, successful SEO strategy rests on intent – they “why” behind the search query or what the searcher wants to achieve. There are four types of intent:

  • Informational: This is the most common type of search. It happens when someone wants to know more about something. Herein lies your opportunity to be discovered. Visitors probably won’t become customers yet though.
  • Navigational: These searchers know who they want to do business with, but they need help finding them. This is why your brand or company’s name will appear in these searches for which Google will return your home, service, or product page. Sometimes mainstream news coverage is also returned.
  • Commercial: These are a mix of informational and transactional in nature. People want to buy something but want to find the informational page so they can do so. As such, Google will typically return informational and product/service pages.
  • Transactional: These are very commercial in nature and typically include words like “price” or “sale.” Google will make sure to return commercial pages here.

Why It’s Important to Know Intent

Knowing intent will help you optimize for it so you can bring in more traffic – more people discovering your brand, building up your authority, or making a sale. These are all important things to target with your SEO, especially now that search engines are growing increasingly more sophisticated and can now measure how well a page matches intent. They reward those pages who do a good job by increasing their ranking in the SERPs.

How to Optimize for Intent

Understanding intent and its importance is the first step towards SEO optimization. Not only must you know intent, you also must understand what people are searching for and what Google believes your intent is. This is even more important than optimizing for specific keywords.

Once you know your intent, you’ll want to look at other pages that are ranking where you want to be. Consider whether they’re blog posts, reviews, lists, product pages, or something else. When all you find is in-depth articles, you don’t have much chance of ranking there but if it’s all product pages, you have a great opportunity because Google wants to show pages that answer their users’ intent. As such, it’s your job to make sure your pages are successful in helping them find the answer to their given query. While on-page optimization and links help with this, addressing intent is the most critical thing here. To rank you must have a page that at least compares with what Google is already ranking in their SERPs here.

Another great way to find places where those sites that are currently listed in the SERPs aren’t truly answering the users’ intent and thus where you could compete faster is by creating highly focused pages. You may even want to consider linking intent. Do this by creating a resource that other websites will want to link to. As you do so, remember to ask yourself if this page will rank in the SERPs – something that will help you identify and optimize for your users’ intent.

When your business keeps you so busy you don’t have time to undertake this process for yourself, hire the Affordable SEO Company to undertake it for you. They’ve helped many businesses be successful with SEO over the years. Yours can be next.

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