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Playing the SEO game by considering the user

One of the best ways to get a higher click-through rate from search engine results pages is for the title of the page to align with the search engine user’s intent. If the user is asking a question, that’s easy. For example, if we have a page targeting “How does a blue widget work?”, then an article with a title of “How does a blue widget work?” would do the job, as would “This is how a blue widget works”.

But what if they just type in ‘blue widgets’? It’s an important search which we’re all targeting in our own market. What are search engine users looking for?

The first thing I look at is what Google has decided. I simply search for ‘blue widgets’. In some cases, it will be a general Wikipedia-style article, in others it will be a list of suppliers. Google has worked out whether or not its users are more likely to be looking to find out general information or buying information, and presents the results accordingly.

If the top results are general information, then  that’s what we need to tackle – a definitive guide to the topic. We might not usurp Wikipedia, but we could provide a compelling alternative.

If the results are supplier-based, then it might be worth considering a ‘how to buy’ or ‘where to buy’ article. Google might well look favourably on this, but more importantly, our result might get a higher click-through rate than a plain supplier site. This could even help it rise through the rankings accordingly.