What is search intent and how understanding it can help your business?

When you’re creating a website, a blog article or even a social media post for your business, it’s important to understand the different types of search intent.

If you don’t know what search intent is, don’t worry – we’re here to help! In this article, we will discuss:

  1. What Search Intent means
  2. What are the common types of search intent
  3. How to determine search intent
  4. Search Engines and Search intent
  5. Considering search intent when creating content

What is Search Intent (AKA user intent)?

In order to understand what search intent is, we first need to define it. So, what is search intent?

In its simplest terms, it is the user’s goal when conducting a search. When you type in a query into a search engine, you are hoping to find certain information and this is why search intent is so important.

Understanding the different types of search intent or user intent can help you create content that is more relevant and useful to them.

In a nutshell, search intent helps you give the people what they want!

What are the common types of search intent?

Now that we have a general understanding of what search intent is, let’s take a look at the different types of user intent:

Transactional intent

This type of intent is commercial in nature. The user is looking to buy a product or service. They might be looking for a specific brand or product, or they might just have a general idea of what they want and are doing some research before making a purchase.

example of transactional intent

In this example, the user is searching for ” iPhone 13 ” because they are looking to buy a new phone and want to find out where they can make their purchase, what deals are available and whether this is a good choice of handset. This is all transactional intent.


Navigational intent

When your user knows where they would like to end up is known as navigational intent, often this type of user is looking for a specific website or online resource. They might have heard about a site from a friend or seen it mentioned on social media or they already use the site and are looking for the login page.

example of navigational intent

Here our user has typed in ” Instagram login “, they would be expecting to end up on the platforms login page. This is navigational intent because the user has a specific goal and knows exactly where they want to go.


informational intent, what is it?

Informational intent

This type of user is looking for information, rather than wanting to buy something or use a specific page. They might not even know what they’re looking for yet!

example of information intent searching

For example, a person conducting a search for ” Places to take the kids in Canterbury ” falls into informational intent because they are looking for information and ideas. Another great example of informational queries are, how to search, such as ” How to make carrot cake ” this user is looking for step by step guides to show the steps to complete a task and the results will give them an answer to this question.


Local intent

A user with local intent is looking for a business or service that is physically close to them. They might have a specific area in mind, or they might be open to suggestions.

example of local intent searching

For example, someone who types in ” plumbers near me ” is displaying local intent as they are looking for a plumbing business that is close by.


How do you determine search intent?

Now you know the different types of search intent, how do you determine which type of search your content will be answering.

There are a few methods:

The first way to determine search intent is by looking at the words that are used in the query. The keywords that are included can give you an indication of what the user is looking for.

for example, if someone types in ” best laptop deals “, they are likely looking for a specific product. However, if they type in ” how to buy a laptop “, they might be looking for general information about laptops before making a purchase.

The second way to determine search intent is by looking at the user’s behaviour. This can be done by using tools such as Google search console. this tool tracks user behaviour and will help you to identify the kind of questions people are asking.

Thirdly you need to be looking at the SERP (search engine results page). Looking at the SERPS will give you an understanding of what google is looking for in relation to your query or keyword. The results that are returned can give you an idea of what the user is hoping to find. For example, if there are a lot of videos for a certain search then the user is likely looking for how-to guides or product reviews.


Search Engines and Search intent

understanding search intent

Conducting a search on the internet is like going to a party, you might not know everybody there but by chatting to a few people you can get an idea of what the night is going to be like. The same goes for search engines, by understanding the different types of intent you can better understand how users interact with your content and how that user journey might affect your conversion rate.


Considering search intent as part of your online strategy

Now that we understand the different types of search intent, how can you use this information when creating your website’s or article’s content?

By creating your content around what people are searching for we can give people value and answer the exact question they need the answer to.

Creating content that satisfies search intent is an extremely important part of a successful SEO strategy. Effectively, If you can provide a helpful answer to their question by matching search intent, then there’s a good chance that the user will stick around on your website or blog post for longer, increasing the chances of them converting into a customer.


So there you have it, hopefully, this will give you some understanding as to what search intent is and how to make sure you are answering the correct search queries in your content, Checkout our other articles for more SEO Buzzwords and if you need help getting your business found on google or even just assistance in planning your strategy, drop us a message below.

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helen

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