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what is a query and how does it relate to SEO?

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Every time a user makes a query on a search engine, he or she is actually typing a query

how many searches does a person perform per day on search engines like Google? Statistics put the answer at three or four queries for an average user, but the result is much higher for those who work in marketing or digital communication. Professionals in these fields are interested in knowing the meaning of a query and its usefulness in search engines, as well as its influence on SEO. Therefore, if you want to know what this term is or how you can take advantage of it in your content marketing strategy, read on.

A query is the term, concept or phrase that a user types into a search engine to make a web query. For example, if a person wants to reach this article from Google, they could type in the search field or the navigation bar something like this: "What is query" or simply "query". What appears in inverted commas is what is called a query.

Difference between query and keyword

You may be wondering what the difference is between a query and a keyword. Although they are often used as synonyms, they are not the same thing. Keywords are the terms that marketers think users might use to perform a search - that's an assumption. A query, on the other hand, is exactly the query that a person performs in a search engine, letter by letter.

For example, the keyword in this article is "query", but perhaps what someone types in Google to search for information about this term is "queri", with a Latin "i". Therefore, a query can include spelling mistakes, errors of expression or even complete phrases and questions, such as: "En que cancion canta Bisbal tan dentro del alma mia". In the latter case, the keyword could be "Bulería", but the user does not include it in his query.

Types of query

Now that we know what a query is, we can differentiate between the three categories that exist:

  • Navigation, the simplest. In this case, the user already knows where he wants to go and performs a search to a specific page. Some examples could be typing "Gmail", "RTVE news", "HBO", etc. in the search engine.
  • Informational, the most common. Here the user makes a query to find information on a particular topic, but does not know what page or result he will end up on. He wants to find an answer, and will choose the entry that best suits his search (which is usually among the first positions of a SERP). This is the case of the cases described above or, for example, "stuffed aubergine recipe".
  • Transactional: The user is looking to perform a specific action such as "buy maroon jacket" or "cinema ticket". This is also known as a sales query, but this type of query is not always related to buying something, as it also includes searches for downloading an application or a PDF.

what impact does a query have on SEO and how can I better optimise my content?

Search engines are giving more and more importance to the user's intention, who often resort to making queries by voice or using the search engine's suggestions. In this sense, it is essential that you anticipate these searches and think about how a person could reach your content. In addition to using keywords, which continue to have an unquestionable weight in SEO positioning, it is important to understand human behaviour when consulting something on the Internet.

To do this, it is interesting to include in your content synonyms of the keyword, related terms or even words in other languages (usually in English) that are used in relation to it. And how can I check the query that users type to access a web entry? The answer can be found in Google Search Console, which allows you to check "how often your website appears in Google Search, with which search queries your site is displayed and how often users click on those queries". Depending on the results, you can adapt your content to improve its optimisation and take it into account for future entries.

what are the advantages of implementing the query in my SEO strategy?

The search engine algorithm is complex because human behaviour is also complex. However, this does not mean that it is not predictable or that guidelines can be established to improve the user experience with search engines. Therefore, just as Google analyses these elements to improve as a company, you can also do the same to obtain long-term benefits in your inbound marketing or SEO positioning strategy. Let's see what advantages we are talking about:

  • Optimise your website in the search results. If you adapt to user behaviour and therefore to the search engine algorithm, search engines will rank your content better and position it higher in the web results. The earlier your posts appear to users, the more likely they are to click on them.
  • Reach your target audience: Apart from facilitating access to content, queries also offer the possibility of consulting what searches your target audience performs and what topics they are looking for information on. In this way, you can adapt to their needs and create content on these issues to increase your chances of reaching your target audience or buyer persona.

  • Reach a wider audience. In addition to reaching your target audience, you are also making it easier for users outside your sector to reach your content by offering different terms to reach an entry. Otherwise, if you resort to very specific technical terms, it will be more difficult to reach the average user. Therefore, by increasing traffic to your website, the algorithm will understand that you offer quality content and will improve your positioning.
  • Improve the results of your SEO and SEM efforts. Whether you have an organic or paid optimisation strategy, the queries will help you get better results.

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