What is Search Intent and Why does it Matter

What is Search Intent and Why does it Matter?

If you’re wondering why your website pages aren’t reaching the right audience, you may want to delve into the concept of search intent and why it matters. You need to find out what your prospective visitors and clients are looking for, so you can create information or content that caters to their needs.

Here is everything you need to know about search intent, and why it matters:

So, What is Search Intent?

The phrase “user intent” is the goal of a search. Every visitor wants to find something. But is someone searching for an answer? Or are they trying to purchase something online? The user experience online typically includes various queries.

Google has focused on enhancing its function to solve users’ search intent. Google strives to rank pages that perfectly match the search term and the search intent. Simply put, content that doesn’t match search intent won’t be displayed, and Google is always striving to give people exact matches. 

Types of Search Intent

Most keywords are classified into one of four search intent categories. These are navigational, informational, commercial, and transactional. 

types of search intent

1.   Navigational Search Intent

These users want to get to a particular website, and it’s often faster to do a quick Google search than type out a complete URL. The user may also be unaware of the actual URL or seeking a specific page, such as a signup page. Most of these searches are for brands or website names, with additional criteria to help consumers discover a particular page.

Navigational search intent examples:


“Nomadic blog seo checklist”

“Twitter login”

2.   Informational Search Intent

Users looking for information conduct informational search queries, as you might have guessed. In this case, specific responses to questions are the intended purpose of the search. These searches encompass interrogatives such as “how-to,” “what is,” “where is,” “why do,” and others. Users can find answers to endless questions; hence, it’s among the most prevalent search intent funnel. However, not all informational phrases are questions. For example, users who type “Barack Obama” into Google are all likely looking for more information concerning Barack Obama.

Informational search intent examples:

“Kristin Malinois”

“Who is the most famous basketball player”

“What is search intent?”

3.   Commercial Search Intent

Users start their commercial exploration before they are ready to order. That’s when users use commercial search to learn more about a product, a brand, or a service. They’ve progressed past the stage of gathering information and have reduced their search to a few alternatives. Users frequently compare products and brands to discover the best answer for their needs.

Note that non-branded localized phrases like “baby clothes shops” or “best ribs grill restaurant in Florida” are frequently used in these searches.

Commercial search intent examples:

“Best price for website hosting service”

“Reviews of Forever 21”

“Most comfortable shoes for restaurant servers”

“Most reliable SUV”

4.   Transactional Search Intent

Transaction-oriented searchers are on the lookout for something to buy. This search can be a product, a service, or a regular subscription. In either case, they know what they’re looking for. Unfortunately, these phrases are frequently branded because the customer is already in the buying mode. Consumers are no longer going for information about the product; instead, they are looking for a specific place to buy it.

Transactional search intent examples:

“Buy sweat suits.”

“Shop Hermes purses”

“Top body shaper sale”

Why Search Intent Matters

Because search intent is a major ranking component, paying attention to it is essential. If you don’t cater your content towards search intent, it will negatively impact your online presence as a whole. Why? Because Google is growing increasingly intelligent. Google can figure out what kind of solution you’re looking for based on the words you use and in what sequence you use them.

It even recognizes that when you type in “Heinz Tomato Mayonnaise,” for example, you’re more likely seeking the product than the recipe or history. When a person seeks an answer, they exhibit a specific set of behaviors and phrases, which Google claims helps them construct a user’s intent profile. These intent profiles are referred to as “micro-moments” by Google, and these are the times when a user is most likely to be influenced by search results.

The named search intent examples help users take action, learn about something, or find something.

How to Incorporate Search Intent in your Marketing Strategy

When it comes to identifying intent, transactional queries are the obvious choice, but don’t let money blind you. Intent search is excellent because it represents opportunities for your business regardless of what it does. Here is how to use search intent optimization in your content marketing strategies:

  • Commercial: Create pages for free versions of your products or services. Even if you don’t have a product that suits every person’s needs, a comprehensive page with lists of free resources will increase views, and correlate to improved product line promotion, customer acquisition, and future conversion.
  • Navigational: Use relevant keywords for your products. Make sure to use product and brand names in title tags and meta descriptions.
  • Transactional: These queries may be your money machines. Create landing pages that allow users to transact/convert directly. Include their local search intent with signup forms and add-to-cart buttons.
  • Informational: These questions make up the majority of Google searches, so you can’t ignore them. Consider these inquiries an opportunity to generate leads, build your reputation as an expert, and raise awareness of your offerings.

How to Determine Searcher Intent

how to determine searcher intent

Once you’ve decided on a keyword, you can start determining the intent of the user. Here are three steps to better explain what clients desire.

  • Examine your SERPs. Researching the SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages) can reveal a searcher’s purpose.
  • Analyze your analytics
  • Measure commercial intent with Google Ads.

The efficacy of your optimization and content marketing initiatives depends on the creation of material that satisfies search intent. You can make yourself more relevant to your audience, raise brand awareness, improve share of voice, and drive conversions and retention by aligning content with search intent.

Want to increase your website performance? Contact the Nomadic team to learn more!

Cacy Lyon

Digital Marketing Coordinator
Cacy is a digital marketing coordinator specializing in SEO. She loves the creativity of writing blog posts for each unique client. Cacy loves house plants, yoga, and traveling. When she is not working, she is usually hiking with her dog.

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