Although the oft-quoted statistic that 67 percent of the B2B buyer’s journey is conducted digitally is up for debate, there’s no doubt that potential customers are out there, using the Internet to conduct self-directed searches for products and services like yours. The most challenging aspect of selling your products is finding a buyer before they choose to buy from someone else. Fortunately, you can address this challenge and become a buyer’s first choice by engaging in search intent marketing.
In many instances today, the success of B2B marketing and sales can hinge heavily on user search intent data. Not everyone has access to it and learning how to harness it can give your business a definitive edge.
If you want to learn more about search intent marketing, such as why it’s important or the different types, you have come to the right place. We will discuss nearly everything you need to know about search intent and how it can be applied to B2B marketing.
What Is Search Intent?
So what exactly is search intent? User intent can be defined as the intention that can be inferred from a search conducted with a search engine. This information is valuable for SEO purposes, but it is even more valuable because it helps you determine what a potential business customer is looking for. This allows you to customize your website to respond to customer needs.
Search intent data gives a significant glimpse of prospective business purchasing signals. This will enable you to position your products or services in the best possible position to get sold.
Additionally, suppose you can combine your intent data with the firmographic details of your ideal customer profile, you can better target businesses interested in your products or services.
Types of Search Intent And How To Distinguish Between Them
Below we have had a look at the different types of search intent signals.
Navigational Search Intent
Navigational search intent is when someone is looking for the name of a specific site, product, or business to find a specific link to a web page that is about what they have in mind. Most searches on Google are navigational searches.
For example, say a user wants to buy a wide belt sander. They might type “wide belt sander dealer” into Google, expecting to receive a list of web pages that are devoted to different distributors of wide belt sanders.
Informational Search Intent
When a user is looking for information on a topic, they cast a wider net with search engines. This type of search is called informational search intent.
For example, if you want to learn more about B2B marketing techniques, you might type “B2B marketing best practices” into Google. You will then use the results to find out as much as you can on the topic by looking at recently published articles to get informed.
Transactional Search Intent
Transactional search intent is when a user is looking for very specific buying conditions online, such as “warehouse racking deals.” In these situations, the user is looking for credible online resources to show them stores where they can expect to find the best deals.
How to Properly Understand Intent
Understanding a user’s true intent can be difficult, but it’s simpler than you might believe. There are a few techniques you can use to get a reliable handle on the intent behind a search.
- You can review leading and top-ranking articles on Google that are optimized for your business’s target keyword
- You can strive to understand and learn all about your target audience
- You can consult Google Analytics to determine how your website is performing compared to other sites
- You can Google keywords to see what ranks, which presumably aligns with what users really want
- With surveys and interactive polls on your website and social media platforms, you can ask your customers what they want
How to Optimize For User Experience
Each website interaction is an excellent opportunity to make a great impression on your target audience. With optimized search intent marketing data, you can create great experiences. You can use intent data to:
- Tailor headlines and calls to action
- Customize chat conversations (e.g., you can customize for generalized website visitors and target accounts)
- Display copy that is written for target small and large business accounts
- Send personalized case studies and product reviews
How to Improve Existing Content with Search Intent Data
Improving your existing content will always get more businesses (users) to choose your services or products and intent data can help.
Often, all you have to do to improve existing content and fix a search intent problem is identify the intent behind the keywords you’re targeting. Once you have done this, you can optimize the content and change it to reflect the intent. Let’s look at an example of this process.
Let’s say you are offering a live marketing course for a local population interested in learning more about marketing, and you have a landing page targeting the keyword “marketing course.” This reads more like informational intent (i.e., the user could be looking to learn more about the different types of marketing courses or for reviews of specific marketing courses), when you should be targeting transactional intent (e.g., “marketing courses near me”).
Final Thoughts on B2B Search Intent Marketing
Understanding B2B search intent marketing isn’t as complex as you might have first believed. As long as you remember to keep in mind the various types of user intent, how to optimize for user experience, and how to improve your existing content, you will have a pretty good understanding.
Additionally, if you can determine your buyer’s search intentions, your business will be more likely to succeed. Your content will rank better, and you will improve traffic to your website. You will also stand a higher chance of companies wanting to buy your products or services.
Yet you need to remember that you can’t use search intent data to merely send out generic content if you want to win more customers. You will need a well-thought-out content marketing strategy. It will need to be implemented with thoroughness, precision, and creativity to turn prospects into customers.