If the internet is an information superhighway, then Google is a cab driver nimbly weaving through millions of lanes of traffic at lightspeed. There wouldn’t be much point to navigating so adeptly without a passenger in the back seat, though. So between trips from the search bar to spaghetti recipes or cat videos, Google’s internet cab is just waiting for you to tell it where to go.
The only problem is none of us give Google a specific address like we would with our cab drivers. It’s not “33 W. Roosevelt St.,” it’s “That blue house I saw that one time.” But as a great cab driver, Google really wants to take you to that blue house. So instead of relying on users’ vague inquiries, Google relies on the destinations for more specific directions.
To rank in the top search results, your content has to tell Google exactly who you’re trying to reach so it knows who to drop at your doorstep. But it’s not enough to just match what users are looking for anymore; you also need to match why they’re looking in the first place. These are the two basic tenets of content optimization. And if you know how to nail them, you can turn into a stop for the gravy train along the information superhighway.