In today’s competitive market, your website will play a major role in attracting new clients to your medical practice. You may already be aware of SEO strategies such as implementing keywords on your site to bring in search traffic from Google. However, one important factor that’s often overlooked is search intent.
Search engines like Google use complicated algorithms to determine what specific content is the most relevant and valuable to an individual user, based on their search terms. One of the things they factor in when generating search results is what the user wants to accomplish when they search for certain terms. This is where search intent comes in.
What is Search Intent?
Search intent refers to the reasons why people are searching for something on the internet. For example, they may be looking for information, wanting to book a service, or needing directions to a business.
Digital technology has advanced to the point where search engines can now attempt to identify what goal a user might have when they type in keywords and search terms. This helps the search engines to display the most useful results.
Why is Search Intent Important?
Many business owners obsess over trying to rank as high as possible on Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs), but they often overlook the searchers themselves. This can cause a disconnect between what customers want and the content on the business’s website.
Understanding what people want to achieve when they search for topics related to your medical business is extremely valuable. It allows you to create content that will connect with those goals. Search intent can let you know exactly what people are searching for and what stage they are at in their journey.
Types of Search Intent
There are many reasons people search for things on the internet. By looking at the search queries people use, you can get a better understanding of what they want to accomplish or what their search intent is. These are the main types of search intent related to medical practices:
Informational intent is when a user wants to find out information about something or fill in knowledge gaps. For example, they may want to know what Botox is or how a thigh lift procedure is performed. Informational queries may contain a single term such as “Botox” or longer terms such as:
- What is liposuction?
- How does Botox work?
- How do I get rid of cellulite?
Commercial intent is when a user already has sufficient information about a topic and they are now looking at various options. They may be narrowing down their options or comparing different products and services. Commercial intent queries could look like the following:
- Best dermal fillers
- CoolSculpting reviews
- Juvederm vs. Restylane
When a user performs a transactional search query, they are seriously considering purchasing a product or service, booking an appointment, or visiting a location. This is usually the last step in a user’s search journey, and these are the searchers most likely to convert. These queries might include terms such as:
- Liposuction doctors near me
- How much do dermal fillers cost?
- Botox in [location]
As you can see, there are many steps in a potential client’s search journey. They might start off searching for solutions to a problem, then move to research specific products and services, and finally search for medical practices that provide those services in their area.
Ideally, you want the information on your website to satisfy your ideal client’s search intent. If you know what your potential clients are searching for and why you can create content that aligns with their goals. That will also encourage search engines to display your content to the right people.
How to Identify Search Intent
The easiest way to see what people are searching for and how they arrive on your site is to look at your website data in Google Search Console. In the Performance section, you’ll see a list of the top queries people used to get to your website and how many times people clicked through to the site.
The search queries will give you a good idea of what people are trying to achieve when they come across your site. If the queries don’t align with the products and services you offer or the type of clientele you are trying to attract, you may need to tweak your content.
You can use Google as another source to help identify search intent. Type in a search query related to your medical practice and the top results will be those that Google decided were the best matches for the search intent. You can also look at the ‘People Also Ask’ section to determine what other goals users are trying to accomplish.
How to Create Content That Aligns With Search Intent
Now that you know what users are looking for and why you can begin to develop content that satisfies those wants and needs. You can start with a basic list of keywords that are relevant to your medical practice and then add intent modifiers.
Intent modifiers are terms that can be added to your keywords to create phrases that align with users’ search intent. These could include words like ‘top’ or ‘best’, location information such as ‘Botox in New York’, or questions such as ‘How much do dental fillers cost?’
Creating optimized content that aligns with user intent can be challenging, especially if you have a busy medical practice to run. An SEO specialist can create quality content for you and ensure your website is reaching the right people who are looking for exactly what you offer.
At Surgeon’s Advisor, we focus exclusively on SEO and digital marketing for medical professionals. Our industry leaders have years of experience using the best operating procedures that get results. Sign up for a free SEO audit or call 305-763-8011 to speak to one of our specialists today.