One of the secrets to business success is learning to understand how your customers think. If you can define what it is your customers are looking for, you’ll be much better equipped to bring them to your doorstep—whether it’s real or virtual. That’s why so many businesses dedicate so much of their time and energy to researching their customers’ wants. But you can’t learn to read your customers’ minds—or can you?

Getting in touch with what your customers are thinking is an essential prerequisite for sales—and that goes for any business, no matter what the industry is. Studying your customers’ thought process and then crafting a buyer persona is also a practical and achievable goal that you can incorporate into your overall marketing strategy. If you approach your market research in a smart and flexible way, you can come as close as anybody can to reading your customers’ thoughts.

Understanding Your Customers’ Thought Process

As important as SEO keyword research is, your efforts to research your market shouldn’t stop there. You can find numerous tools that will help you get a better grasp of what it is your customers are looking for, and how they make decisions. These are just a few of the ways that you can get closer to what your customers are thinking:

Sit down with your customers.

The fastest way to find out what your customers are thinking is to simply ask them. You should take advantage of every possible opportunity to talk with your customers about what they’re looking for and what they want out of the products or services that you provide. Even sitting down with a customer as he or she does a Google search can give you valuable insights into the decision-making process that your customers go through as they access your website. What are their priorities? Do they have any deal-breakers? What is foremost in their minds when they’re deciding whether or not to go through with a purchase? These are essential pieces of information that you won’t be able to glean from keyword research. If you aren’t already speaking to your customers on a regular basis to try to deepen your background knowledge about your customer base, it’s time to start.

Use Google’s “People Also Ask” feature.

Google has a wealth of search-related features that many people aren’t aware of—including many that can prove to be extremely useful for research purposes. One tool that’s easy to overlook is the “People Also Ask” feature. When you do a search on Google for a question, you may see a box pop up containing a list of popular questions that other search engine users have looked up. These boxes tend to appear in response to general questions, rather than specific or obscure ones. This feature is a terrific way to learn about some related questions that may be on your customers’ minds.

Look at Google’s Autocomplete list.

When you begin typing a query into Google’s search box, you’ve probably noticed that four possible queries pop up. These are four of the most popular related searches. You can make this familiar feature into a useful tool for market research by doing a search, going to “Search Settings” under “Settings,” and switching the option under “Google Instant predictions” to “Never show Instant results.” Now, instead of four possible queries, you’ll see 10. This means that you can easily see what other subjects and questions your potential customers are looking up.

Study related search terms on Google.

Whenever you do a Google search, you’ll see a list of related searches appear at the bottom of the screen. If you look up “tea kettles,” for example, you’ll see related terms such as “electric tea kettles,” “whistling tea kettle,” and “vintage tea kettle.” You’ll also see terms related to specific stores, such as “tea kettle walmart.” This tells you that the term “tea kettle” is too broad; it won’t get you noticed by customers who are looking to buy from stores like Walmart. To get the consistent results you’re looking for, you need to optimize your content for narrower and more specific terms.

If you’re looking for innovative ways to connect with customers, don’t underestimate the value of high-quality content. Using great content lets you forge a deeper, more lasting connection with customers than you can achieve through conventional advertisements. That’s where Pennington Creative comes in. We’ll provide you with the content you need to make an impression on your customers and build a dedicated audience. We offer a wide array of different content services to meet the needs of our clients. To learn more about how we can help you with your online marketing goals, contact us today!

About the Author

Justyn - Digital Marketing Manager, Special Projects
Justyn Dillingham

Digital Marketing Manager, Special Projects