Say Goodbye To Search Volume & Hello To Search Intent

Posted 02.05.2019

By Ryan Knighton

No, this isn’t an announcement about Google changing how one of its many tools work so don’t worry too much. But it is an announcement telling you that you need to change how you currently work your keyword research. That is if you do it like everybody else, where the overriding most important factor in your research is how much volume your keywords are getting. It’s time to start considering the users intent behind each keyword. But what does that mean?

What Is Search Intent?

First, lets actually understand what we mean by ‘Search Intent”. Search intent, also known as keyword intent, is the ultimate goal of the person who is using a search engine. Confused? You don’t need to be, put simply, it’s considering what a user actually wants to see when they search for something. For example, if you ordered a ham sandwich at a cafe and got a cheese sandwich instead, you’d be pretty annoyed at the cafe for not meeting your expectations, especially since you asked for something specific. The very same thing is happening to your website users.

Why Does It Matter?

As we said above, the modern search landscapes main priority is to provide users exactly what they want to see. The more value you can provide to users based on what they want to see the more likely to see better rankings for your website because you are providing a better experience all around. Targetting keywords to match their intent also has a huge benefit on your website too, it means you get more traffic that is likely to convert. Sure, having hundreds of thousands of visitors is nice, but that doesn’t mean any more conversions. Instead, you can focus your efforts on targeting keywords where you can match the search intent, which may get less traffic but converts more often. Which one sounds better to you?

Does This Mean I Shouldn’t Care About Search Volume?

Definitely not! As with everything in digital marketing, it’s all about balance, because so many things contribute to the overall success of your keyword driven campaigns. You should still be considering how much volume each keyword is likely to get organically because there may well be a few keywords with very similar intent, but one could massively outperform the others in terms of volume. It’s a bit of a no brainer which you should use really.

How To Combine Both Factors

In order to choose the best possible keywords for your website and campaigns, you need to consider both factors together. First, consider what are users wanting to do or see when they type in that keyword. Does your site match that, or could it match that with some content tweaks? Is it a keyword likely to drive conversions for you? If the keyword ticks all of those boxes, consider if you can justify pursuing it based on how much traffic it is likely to provide to your website. Is it super high volume but incredibly competitive? Or is it slightly less searches a month for less competition? Once you have found the balance between all factors, you have a new keyword to begin targetting throughout your website’s content!

If you are struggling to compile your list of keywords that suit both of these factors, get in touch with our marketing team and we can point you in the right direction!

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