Jan 2, 2024

Search intent checklist

Search intent is bigger than keywords and funnel stages. It’s bigger than curated FAQs and hot takes. It’s even bigger than your wonderful, original research reports.

Those are all important, of course. But there are more subtle elements at play, too: tone, word choice, voice. The stuff that builds trust.

You can’t measure those qualities like you can measure keyword volume, but you can still be systematic about including them.

So we built a checklist for those elements that build trust.

Search intent checklist google docs example.

A qualitative audit for search intent

Sales reps get to build rapport with leads in a direct way – often in-person. The task for content marketers is much more abstract and difficult.

Still, we can try to build rapport with the content we create.

From the title to the closing paragraph a piece of content needs to be:

  • Relevant to a reader’s interests, pain points, and expertise
  • Trustworthy and empathic with the information it presents
  • Compelling for people to read on and learn more

Experienced editors have an intuition for these qualities. For the rest of us, it helps to have a checklist of explicit tasks. Like this...

Search intent checklist comment example.

💝 Get the search intent checklist

When we optimize content at Ercule, the approach is very traditional: target a keyword and align with a funnel stage. We use a checklist to optimize for all of the standard SEO priorities. (Feel free to copy that one, too.)

And now we have a checklist for the qualitative side of search intent.

The tasks on the list are subjective but, I think, important. For example…

  • Answer specific questions with actionable answers
  • Speak from experience, citing real client scenarios
  • Write about at least one subject that your brand knows better than anyone else

Make a copy for yourself and customize with your own brand voice guidelines.

And edit swiftly with your reader’s best interest in mind!

We’re *actually* here to help

We’re marketers who love spreadsheets, algorithms, code, and data. And we love helping other marketers with interesting challenges. Tackling the hard stuff together is what we like to do.

We don’t just show you the way—we’re in this with you too.

Background image of a red ball in a hole.