Far too often, marketers worry about the “mechanics” of search engine optimization while missing out on obvious principles that could help them not only rank more highly on Google but also convert a bigger percentage of visitors into actual customers.

One of the most important things you can do to make your SEO campaigns more profitable and effective is to pay close attention to searcher intent. In other words, think carefully about the things your potential customers actually want when they enter a string into a Google search box—not just the text they use to try to find it. Doing so can dramatically affect the way you view the search marketing process. To see why and how, just follow two easy steps:

First, Know Your Searcher.

Before you can know what your searchers really want, you have to have a good idea of who they actually are. Demographic information can give you a good start (and is often available through your web analytics package), but we encourage you to go further and think about what kinds of problems, issues, and challenges they are facing.

When you understand those motivations, you can use the resulting information to make your website more helpful to new visitors. You can turn your pages into a real resource—instead of just another avenue for marketing. That’s a great way to stand out in any business, no matter how competitive.

Second, Give Them Something Easy, Useful, and Actionable.

Even if your product or service is such a perfect answer for the challenge that it's on your prospect’s mind, it is important to keep in mind that they may have a bit of resistance that stops them from acting on it right away. Perhaps they haven’t heard of you, don’t trust you, or aren’t immediately convinced that what you have to offer is the solution they’ve been looking for.

For all those reasons, it’s a good idea to give first-time visitors something easy, useful, and actionable. This could include a free sample, a downloadable report, or some other “giveaway” that helps bring them closer to the answer they’ve been searching for while tying them further to your business and website.

You should always remember that real, live humans (the kind that fill out forms, make purchases, and keep your business afloat) use Google and the other search engines for their own reasons, which may or may not be immediately obvious. By understanding what they’re hoping to get from you on your website, you can have an easier time attracting their attention and turning them into customers.


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