The Conversion Optimization Guide to User Intent

User intent is a major factor in search engine optimization and conversion optimization. Most of the talk about customer intent, however, is focused on SEO not CRO.

The fact is, however, CRO and SEO converge so closely in this area, it’s impossible to separate the two.

I want to take a fresh look at user intent, but provide more focus on the conversion optimization side of the issue.

Here’s my thesis: User intent is the starting point for successful conversion optimization. If you fail in addressing customer intent, you fail in conversion optimization. If you succeed in addressing customer intent, then you succeed in conversion optimization. That’s the simple reality, and there’s no way around it.

What is user intent?

User intent describes what a user is looking for when they conduct a search query. This goes beyond the superficial idea of “keywords.” Keywords are just that — words, and they are nearly passé in the age of semantic search and highly developed algorithms.

The customer’s intent is what those keywords or queries are really driving at.

There are three main types of intent:

  • Navigational – The user is trying to get to a certain site.
  • Informational – The user is looking for information.
  • Transactional – The user is prepared to buy or to perform some other specific online activity.

The basic idea is that everyone who performs an Internet search has a specificintent. They want something. The content that appears in the search results should meet their intent.

The Conversion Optimization Guide to User Intent