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How Do Folks Interact with Search Engines?

One of the most crucial ways to build an online marketing strategy online is having empathy for your audience.  Once you understand what the average searcher is looking for, that’s when you can most effectively communicate and even better, actually KEEP those users coming back!

You may have heard the phrase, ‘Build the site for users, not search engines’.  Though having the site be search engine friendly, you still have a large obligation to help users experience your site in a positive way.  If they can’t find what they’re looking for, but it ranks well – what’s the point?

When visitors type a query into a search box and land on your site, will they be satisfied with what they see? This is the primary question search engines try to figure out hundreds and thousands of times per day. The search engines’ primary responsibility is to serve related results to their users.

When looking at the broad spectrum of understanding search engine users, there is quite a compelling argument to the power of search:

  • The percentage of Internet users who use search engines on a typical day has been steadily rising from about one-third of all users in 2002, to a new high of 59% of all adult Internet users.
  • 76% of respondents used search engines to find local business information
  • Google sends 90.62% of traffic.

Statistical data provided by PewResearch Internet Project and Moz.com

But how do searchers actually search… did you know there are steps that most searchers take across the board?

  1. Need a solution, the answer or a piece of information
  2. Come up with a string of words, known as the ‘query’
  3. Type the query into the search engine
  4. Browse through the results – like what you see?
  5. There’s a MATCH! Click on the result
  6. Scan for a solution
  7. No solution? Leave the page and begin again
  8. User may even change up query for more refined results

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