Search engine optimization is a powerful tool many websites use to achieve high visibility on Google, Yahoo and Bing. The visibility brings traffic, and if the strategy is well-crafted, that traffic is qualified and targeted.

There is a decided advantage in targeting traffic that is qualified and targeted when it comes to website search rankings. You see, traffic that is not exactly targeted ultimately serves to hurt your rankings. In most cases, traffic that arrives at your website by mistake or perhaps by way of a broader search that, like a large sturdy fish net, sweeps in every related search in its wake will leave the site as quickly as they arrive. And this causes your website’s bounce rate to increase. Bounces are visits that basically go nowhere. Brief visits to your site from search engine results pages that don’t produce visits to other pages on the site but quick exits. The assumption is that the visit was in error or that the search result did not match the user’s intent. And if that was the case, perhaps the site shouldn’t actually rank for that search, ultimately detracting from your site’s authority.

Qualified traffic emanates from searches with a purpose. Search engine optimization strategies that produce them are deliberate and purposeful.  And they begin with search terms that clearly reveal a user’s intent.

(SEO Strategies that Draw Qualified Traffic)

For instance, online searches typically come in three forms:

These show the intent of the search. Navigational searches are those that mean to take the user to a specific site (e.g. “Oak Park Library” or “Macy’s Website”). They typically involve an online destination name. If a competitor of Macy’s Department Store wanted to rank for a search of that name with the intent of attracting potential Macy’s customers, they might rank a landing page for the search term “Macy’s Women’s Apparel” in doing so, they get visibility among potential Macy’s customers and a chance to attract their traffic to their site.

Informational searches are those that seek to, you guessed it, obtain information. Searches in this realm include those like “symptoms of arthritis” or “SUV reviews.” Targeting this kind of search brings qualified traffic that seek the kind of content you may have to provide.

Transactional searches are high intent searches, and they reveal an intent to buy or acquire a product or service online. For instance “buy a new home in Arlington Heights” or “subscribe to the Chicago Tribune” show an intent to conduct a very specific transaction. Website landing pages targeting specific searches like these are poised to pick up qualified traffic ready to convert.

It’s important to note what kind of traffic you look to attract when developing your SEO strategy. More specific and distinct search strategies that take into account user intent may pay off with qualified traffic that grows your business, lowers your bounce rate and keeps your website atop the rankings for your industry.

If you would like to work with Proctor Digital strategists to help develop a powerful SEO strategy to build  targeted website traffic for your site and grow your brand, call us at 773.664.5819. We’d love to help!

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