5 Tips to Improve Rankings with Search Intent

5 Tips to Improve Rankings with Search Intent Mars664

5 Tips to Improve Rankings with Search Intent


In this article we introduce you 5 Ways to Use Search Engine Results and Smart Keyword Research to Help Determine Search Intent for Higher Rankings.

As digital marketers, we rely on search engines to properly categorize and prioritize search results based on intent, length, and authority. Essentially, for digital marketing to be successful, we must trust that search engines understand what users are really searching for and that search engines can deliver the best results to meet user intent.

In the field of linguistics, words and phrases are made up of intentions and extensions. Intensity denotes the semantic meaning of a word or phrase, while extensions denote the objects to which this phrase can be attributed.

For example, the intent of the word “sock” is to denote a garment that we wear on our feet. The extension of this term could be used to identify multiple characteristics and categories of socks, including men's socks, women's socks, tall socks, ankle socks, blue socks, and more.

Categorizing and providing the right results for this requires massive amounts of data to provide the most informed decision about a particular search. For example, if we apply homonyms to this scenario, such as the word “apple”, we can see that search engines are forced to choose and ration between a built urban space or intended for construction and the fruit apple.

This conundrum isn't limited to long-tail phrases, either.

Let's take the search term “interactive dog toys” with a Google Ads search volume between 10,000 and 100,000. Maybe when you search for this term, you have a specific toy in mind or an idea of ​​what you're looking for, but you can't put it into words. There are literally thousands of extensions or types of interactive toys to choose from.

Search engines choose these results in a variety of ways, including applying sentiment analysis to content on the web, pulling data from your product listing ads (PLA) platform, and even reviewing what competitors are doing. using as copy for your Google Ads offer.

But what is the intention of this search? Are people trying to buy an interactive dog toy or researching which one is best before purchasing from a store? Perhaps the answer lies in the search engines.


Understand search engines

My next point is the main point of this article: understanding search intent helps marketers better understand both users and search engines.

In accordance with best practices, We should always write for users and not for search engines. This is indisputable. But can understanding how search engines prioritize results also give us more information about our customers? Of course!

Keywords let us know what users are searching for, but search results and click data show us what users find rewarding. In fact, many people believe that click data actively influences results, and this makes sense even if Google doesn't confirm it.

Google and Bing also offer different search engine results page (SERP) blocks for different intent searches:

  • Featured Snippets
  • Answering machine
  • Local 3 Pack

Obviously, we know that “interactive dog toys” is a high-volume search term, but this doesn't really give us an idea of ​​what users want. If we look at the results on this page, we will see a list of the best dog toys, and not a list of products, it is the number one result.

Of course, search engines may be divisive by providing both transactional and informational results, but they also show that, in most cases, people are conducting research for this term.


So what is the benefit of optimizing intent?

  • Move the needle on organic SERP results by delivering more relevant results.
  • Increase the click-through rate (CTR) of our ads.
  • Facilitate more on-page conversions for people who land on our site by fulfilling their intent.
  • Delineate between local and national content.
  • Offer answers that can become the featured snippet box.

With this in mind, I'd like to outline five strategies for acquiring more search intent data to improve our overall digital marketing performance.


1.- Start with keyword research

In general, keyword phrases have four forms of intent:

  1. How, what, when, where and why.
  2. Buy and sell
  3. Addresses, comments, store hours.
  4. Navigational. Brand and page/URL specific.

I would suggest different tools for different forms of intent.

Non-fiction: SEMrush, AskthePublic.

Transactional: AdWords, UberSuggest.

For organic SEO, start with a crawl of your existing site using a tool like Deep Crawl or Screaming Frog to extract a list of keywords for which your pages currently rank.

Take advantage of competitor research and the tools listed above to create a list of keywords you want your site to rank for. Segment them with the intention of determining what strategy should be used to create the best outcome for them.

For example, keywords with the terms “how to,” “guide,” and “tips” would obviously imply the need for an informative blog post.

Pay-per-click (PPC) campaigns are typically based on long-tail keywords acquired from tools, such as Google Keyword Planner., which include terms such as “buy”, “sell”, “rent” or “list”. Segment these keywords with the intention of creating coordinated campaigns that address user intent on multiple levels: curiosity and purchase.


2.- Extract data from SERPs

As noted above, keyword phrases do not always easily identify intent. Use search engines to your advantage for further analysis.

Run your list of initial keywords through a Google search in incognito mode. Be sure to clear your cache so you can receive unbiased search results. Analyzing the results for groups of similar keywords can help you understand why certain pages outperform others. It will also show you what search engines consider most relevant to your search intent.

For more contextual clues about what users are searching for, consider checking out these resources:

  • Recommended Google Searches
  • Google answering machine.
  • Google and Bing autocomplete search feature.

These contextual clues will direct you to popular searches within a given industry and help you determine which topics are most relevant to a given query. With this information in mind, you can analyze these keywords to see if users are looking to make a purchase or conduct further research.



3.- Evaluate the funnel

With this in mind, you should also look at your existing channels to optimize content to better match the intent.

Sign in to Google Search Console (GSC) and filter by pages to check the CTR of the highest-ranking URLs that generate impressions. This figure will provide information about whether your URL, title tag, and meta description meet the user's intent for a given search.

I would argue that this also justifies including exact match keywords in rich snippets to match the intent.

  1. Exact match keyword terms are bolded by Google.
  2. Users actively search for these key terms or phrases in rich snippets.
  3. Dynamic SERPs will pull phrases from your content that include these exact match keyword terms.

When you see pages that aren't generating impressions, you'll need to go back and update your keyword strategy or take advantage of competitor analysis to see how competitors are delivering on that intent. Sometimes it just takes a few clicks from link building and paid social campaigns to show Google and Bing that your pages are authoritative and relevant to search queries.

You should also evaluate the flow of user behavior with Google and Bing analytics to see what elements of your site users are engaging with after landing on it. Do your internal links add contextual information that satisfies additional intent? Does your homepage encourage the intent to facilitate conversions?

Analyze session times, bounce rates, and your tracking code to implement conversion optimization strategies that deliver on intent and drive some revenue for your business.

In your analysis, you'll notice that, in general, sales pages should get more clicks for powerful searches, as well as more conversions. On the other hand, informative content pages should gather more clicks for long-tail queries and have longer session times, with sometimes higher bounce rates.


4.- Monitor competitors' Google Ads offers

On the paid side, use tools like SEMrush and SpyFu to see what keywords competitors are bidding on to find insights into what competitors find most relevant to their campaigns.

Analyze your ad copy and landing pages to see how keywords are implemented in titles, descriptions, and CTAs. Leverage these keywords to boost your campaign and experiment with split testing to see which campaigns generate the best results. It makes sense that the ad that matches the intent will generate more conversions and not waste ad spend.


5.- Optimize for natural language searches

Finally, if you want to better understand the intent behind searches, you can also look towards users. Observe the language people use when they perform voice searches or write their own phrases in forums and social media posts.

Create surveys and ask questions on social media to extract this information. Simply engage with your customers to identify the intent behind the terms and jargon they use. You understand your customers better than anyone, so you should be able to identify the intent behind most searches.

To help, I suggest optimizing your content on the site to answer as many user questions as possible, whether for a paid post or an informational blog post. This will make your content more relevant to users and search engines regardless of your intent.



We use keywords for virtually all aspects of digital marketing.

Until recently, neural networks and deep learning were not available to help search engines understand the semantic meaning and intent behind user searches. We simply had to use exact match links and keywords to hope that their results were relevant enough to users.

As search engines become more sophisticated, I would say it is easier for digital marketers to optimize them for the best results. The data is clear in the keywords and the re