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Search Intent: Learn about the Types and How to Optimize It

Last updated: Aug 19, 2022

What is Search Intent?

In optimizing a website, search intent is one of the terms that can be heard often. The term refers to the intent or purpose of an online search done by a user. It can be said that the intent is the reason why someone searches for something specific online.

Surely, a user's intent is an online indicator that needs to be recognized to make an impact on the SEO. A user’s purpose to browse for information can also be seen from the keywords used and the result of the searches on the SERP.

The use of certain keywords can indicate the purpose or the intent of the search conducted by the user. Google will display the most relevant pages on the SERP that are related to the keywords. Therefore, it is better if you use the keyword that is relevant to the query of the search itself.

Over time, Google develops its algorithm to help find the intent of the user. The display of the website pages’ ranks on the SERP can also be adjusted with the most relevant keywords to the purpose or intent of the search itself.

In other words, users’ intent is a factor that needs to be considered in creating content on your website. In this case, choosing the keywords should be done strategically so your content is deemed relevant by Google and ranks high on the SERP.

Types of Intent

What is search intent in SEO? It is an important element that lets you know the purpose of an online search done by a user. Therefore, it is important to know its types to optimize the performance of your website. Here are the four intents you need to know:

Informational Intent

Most users conduct online searches to look for information. In general, users search for content related to daily necessities, such as weather information or the latest news. Users often look for content about a specific topic, like a recipe as well.

Google recognizes the intent related to the specific topic and displays more information about it. As an example, Google will display the result pages containing the recipes to make sambal even though the user only types the keyword “sambal” in the search field.

Navigational Intent

A user’s intent is a metric used to see the intent of a user in navigating the internet. In this case, navigational intent refers to the purpose of a user in visiting a certain website. It works by typing the name of the website, like “cmlabs Malang”, into the search box.

It is worth noting that ranking the highest on the SERP in regard to navigational intent can prove beneficial for your website. It shows that the keywords used are relevant to your website. Therefore, the result shows the accuracy that matches the user’s intent.

Transactional Intent

Today, one of the purposes of search intent is to fulfill transactional needs. Users usually browse online in order to get the best product. In this case, they already know what they are looking for. As an example, they will type the keyword “buy iPhone 12” in the search box.

Users do transactional searching to get the products they want. Usually, the results show the pictures of the products as well as the rich snippet and the link to the product page. With this, users can finish their search activities efficiently.

Commercial Investigation

Other than for buying products, users often investigate the product first before buying it for real. Therefore, the use of keywords is also intended to look for commercial products that fit and fulfill their needs.

As an example, type in the keyword “the best backlink service in Indonesia” in the Google search box to look for the backlink providers that fit your website’s needs the most. Once you do that, Google will display a list of backlink service providers from which you can choose.

How to Optimize Search Intent

Knowing what search intent is can give you insights into website optimization. By knowing the intent or the purpose of the user, you can strategically create your content based on the search volume of particular keywords that attract traffic organically.

Use Commercial Keywords

To get the best result on the SERP, the optimization process on the search intent needs to be done. It can be done by using commercial keywords that have high search volume and planning the content publication related to the topics that attract traffic on the SERP.

As an example, you can use the keyword “free SEO tool” and connect it to the product page. Other than that, write an article that explains the information regarding such tools as well as the procedures to use them, so the users can understand what they are for.

Conduct Audience Research

It is worth noting that users’ intent is a metric that should be used in accordance with certain topics. In other words, not all keywords with high search volumes can be used to improve your website’s performance.

To apply optimization regarding users’ intents, you must do research first on your audience. It can be done by analyzing the result pages directly. From there, you can see the type of content that gets the highest position.

Aside from that, you can also do a survey directly to the audience. To get the insights, use the questionnaire that includes questions related to what they search for online and what they want to see when they visit your website.

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