Chapter4.How Searchers Work

Chapter 4. How Searchers Work

Management Would Be Easy…If It Weren't for the People is the whimsical title of Patricia J. Addesso's excellent book (American Management Association, 1996). Similarly, search marketing would be a lot easier if we did not have to worry about those pesky searchers.

You know the best search query to use to find your hit product, but searchers might not. Searchers might not know your product's name, or might not be able to spell it. Or they might not know that you call them "notebook computers" because they think of them as "laptops." If you optimize your pages for "notebook computers," you sure are going to miss a lot of those "laptop" searchers.

Searchers are not experts. They are not experts in what is on your Web site. They are not even experts on how to search. If you are expecting them to be, then they will continue to use search to find their answersthey just will not find them from you! One of the hardest things about any kind of marketing (and search marketing is no different) is to put yourself in your customer's shoes. You might know how to find the information on your site, but searchers do not. Your searchers are probably not like you, because you know a lot more than they do about searching and you especially know more about your Web site.

The preceding two chapters examined how search engines work and how search marketing works, but this chapter examines how searchers workhow they think, what they do, and what you can do about it. Not surprisingly, any effective search marketing program requires a solid understanding of the Web searcher. This chapter covers the following topics:

  • Visitor behavior. Before we look at the particulars of how searchers behave, we need to take a look at some general findings on the behavior of visitors to Web sites.

  • The searcher's intent. When formulating the query, every searcher has some objective in mind. Understanding the searcher's intent helps you provide the right information for the search engine to returnwe can categorize search queries into several distinct types.

  • The searcher's click. What links on the search results page do searchers click? We review the latest research into why searchers click where they do.

  • The searcher's follow-through. Getting the searcher to visit your site is only half the battle. You need to develop your model of what visitors do on your site after they search to be sure that they will follow throughto buy your product, or sign up for your newsletter, or vote for your candidate.

Anyone who spends time studying people realizes that they interact with the world in unexpected and complex ways, and searchers are no exception. Let's start by examining the basic principles of how Web site visitors behave.

    Search Engine Marketing, Inc. Driving Search Traffic to Your Company's Web Site
    Search Engine Marketing, Inc.: Driving Search Traffic to Your Companys Web Site (2nd Edition)
    ISBN: 0136068685
    EAN: 2147483647
    Year: 2005
    Pages: 138

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