In this part of our free SEO training, we look in more detail at search intent and how to use it in SEO keyword research for Google.
If you can’t match searcher intent, then you’re never going to rank high for your main keywords.
Search intent represents the reason behind a searcher’s query, and matching search intent is one of those must-do things to show search engines that your page will fulfil its goal to deliver the most relevant results for any given query.
And while it might sound like you’re trying to satisfy Google, what you’re actually doing is learning what you need to do to satisfy the searcher’s intent.
Identifying search intent is usually quite easy. All you have to do is search for the keyword you want to rank for and then analyse the top-ranking results, as Google understands what searchers want more than anyone else.
Now, “analysing” can mean all sorts of things, so we have an easy 3-point formula you can use.
It’s called the three C’s of search intent.
The first C is content type. Content type can usually be categorized into blog posts, videos, product, category, and
For example, the dominant type of pages for the query “best tennis shoes” are blog posts.
The second C is content format, which applies more to blog posts and landing pages. A few common blog formats you’ll see are how-to’s, step-by-step tutorials, list posts, and opinion editorials.
For a landing page, that might be something like a tool or calculator. For the query “best tennis shoes” you’ll find that all of the top results are listicles, which makes sense because the word “best” implies that a comparison needs to be made.
And the third C is content angle, which often depicts the “benefit.” It’s basically your hook as to why someone should click and visit your page.
For “best tennis shoes,” you’ll find that every post has gone with the “freshness angle,” which is evident based on the current year being in the titles.
In our opinion, this is the least important and often least consistent among top-ranking pages.
This is just one example of search intent for a keyword. Let’s go through a few more examples to really get into this concept.
The first example is for the query “how to serve in tennis.” The dominant content type is clearly blog posts, but you’ll also find a YouTube video is ranking ahead of the blog posts.
So this tells us that it may be worth creating both a blog post and video to potentially get two different spots in the search results.
As for content format, they’re clearly all how-to’s, and seeing as the nature of the topic would require a step-by-step procedure, that’s probably the route you’d want to go too.
And you can confirm this by actually visiting some of the top-ranking pages.
With content angle, it appears as though “for beginners” or “basic” seems to be the right way to approach the topic.
The second example is for the query “tennis racquets”. Looking at the SERP, you’ll see that they’re all ecommerce category pages, which tells us that when people search for this query, they’re likely in shopping mode.
Seeing as content format applies mostly to blog posts and landing pages, it wouldn’t be applicable here since we’re looking at ecommerce category pages.
As for content angle, it’s mostly about deals: saving money on tennis racquets.
Looking at the SERP, you’ll find something a bit different.
Content type for the top-ranking page is an ecommerce category page. Then we have a couple of blog posts on the best tennis racquets, and a blog on on how to choose the right sized tennis racquet.
And towards the bottom half of the results, we have more ecommerce category pages.
So, what do you do with such a mixed bag of results?
In order to make an educated decision, we still need to lay some foundation work, so we’ll look at this example again in a later lesson.
So that’s SEO keyword research for Google. You should now have the basics of search intent down.
To learn how to get more visitors to your website, check out our next Blog post 10 SEO Tips to increase click-through rate.
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