Internet users access to search engines for different types of searches. A searcher will create his search terms differently according to what he intends and will likewise expect different results: perhaps articles, videos, or even an entire site.
These searches can be broken down into three types of search queries viz. Navigational, Informational and Transactional.
Navigational Search Queries
A navigational query is a search query entered with the intent of finding a particular website or webpage. Example, a user might enter “YouTube” into Google’s search bar to find the YouTube site rather than entering the URL into a browser’s navigation bar or using a bookmark. In fact, “Facebook” and “YouTube” are the top two searches on Google, and these are both navigational queries.
You don’t stand much of a chance targeting a navigational query unless you happen to own the site that the person is looking for. True navigational queries have very clear intent – the user has an exact site in mind and if you’re not that site, you’re not relevant to their needs.
Informational Search Queries
Wikipedia defines informational search queries as “Queries that cover a broad topic (e.g., Mumbai or trucks) for which there may be thousands of relevant results.” When someone enters an informational search query into Google or another search engine, they’re looking for information – hence the name. (Knowledge Graph)
Here are some of the ways you could target informational queries to drive traffic and leads to your site through organic search:
- Write a blog post full of tips that would be useful for your prospective customers.
- Create a how-to video that is relevant to your business.
- Write a detailed, step-by-step guide that elucidates a process relevant to your business.
- Design an infographic that illustrates a concept.
The goal is to position yourself as a trustworthy, authoritative source of information, not to try to cram your products down the searcher’s throat.
Transactional Search Queries
A transactional search query is a query that indicates an intent to complete a transaction, such as making a purchase. Transactional search queries may include exact brand and product names (like “Samsung galaxy s3”) or are generic (like “LG mixer /grinder”) or actually include terms like “buy,” “purchase,” or “order.”