How Does Keyword Intent Drive Your Visitor Searches? *

Learn How Keyword Intent Can Boost Your Conversion Rate


What is Keyword Intent?


Keyword intent is a representation of the user’s purpose for the search.  It’s what we think the user is likely to do during a search since we can’t be sure.  Keyword intent is a very important concept when it comes to keyword research.  

By understanding the users’ needs better, it helps you match your content and landing pages to their search intentions.  Analyzing keywords by intent is your first step when determining conversion rates as they refer to searches.


The 4 Types of Keyword Intent


There are four types of keyword intent.  These include commercial intent, informational intent, transactional intent and navigational intent.  We will attempt to explain the purpose and use of each type of keyword intent in the following paragraphs.


Commercial or High Intent


Commercial or High Intent is the type that is often referred to as “buy now intent”.  This intent type indicates a strong intention by the searcher to act either by buying, joining, or subscribing, etc.  

Usually the search will use keyword phrases containing terms such as buy, coupon, deals, or free shipping, etc.  People using these types of searches are most likely to commit to making a purchase.


Informational Intent


Informational intent indicates that the searcher is willing to find out more about something.  These individuals are seeking more information to help them decide if they wish to take an action.  

Don’t immediately jump to selling, these are times when good gated content is useful to inform and also collect email addresses.  Searches simply seeking information could contain one of the following modifiers: “How to . . .”; “Why . . .”; “Best way to . . .”; “History of . . .”; “Anatomy of . . .”; “What . . . means”.


Transactional Intent


Transactional intent falls between commercial and informational intent.  These queries may represent both being ready to purchase and seeking more information about a product or service.

If they find the the right content, these searchers may buy things or be convinced to buy somewhere further into the conversion funnel.  These searches may contain words like: “. . . Reviews”; “. . . vs . . .”; “Best . . .”; “Top 10 . . .”; etc.


Navigational Intent


Keywords that contain brand names signal navigational intent, meaning a searcher knows exactly what they’re looking for and where they’re headed.  Brand name searches are the gold you seek in searches.

If a person types in your brand name when searching, they already know exactly what they want; you just need to give that to them.

What you need to do here is to ensure that those searchers will land on your site, so your assets rank in top three for those queries.  You also need to be sure that your website will satisfy their need in the best possible way.  Your landing page must give them all the answers or let them perform the intended action.

Pay close attention to search queries that contain your brand name, and monitor your site rankings for all of them.


How to Identify Keyword Intent


In most cases, you’ll be able to use your common sense when determining the search query intent.  In many cases, it’s obvious whether a user intends to buy, research, or navigate to a particular website.

Google has been working on identifying user search intent.  You’ll be able to pick up some cues by simply searching Google.  Google’s “Universal” search is the search giant’s attempt to give them what they need right within the search results.  

In most cases, these types of search results will signal the user’s intent as perceived by Google:

  1. “Quick-answer” search boxes (those giving you a short answer on top of search results) signal information intent.
  2. “People Also Ask” boxes also signal informational intent.
  3. Google’s shopping results signal “high-intent” search queries.
  4. Google’s local results and knowledge graph tend to signal navigational queries.
  5. So does the “Search in Search” feature.


Checkout Serpstat’s Free Keyword Tool


You can use Serpstat’s free keyword tool to see which types of “universal” search results from any given query triggers.  You can also use Serpstat filters to restrict your search to queries triggering a particular search type and hence a particular intent.

This is a very useful trick when you are working on a specific marketing strategy. For example, when creating an editorial calendar, you can use Serpstat to research keywords triggering “People also ask” results, revealing obvious informational intent.


How to Organize Keywords for Better Conversions


Being an integral part of keyword research, intent helps you create a more organized content strategy aiming at happier customers and better conversions.  The first step is to organize keyword phrases by intent:

  • Keywords with informational intent are straightforward content ideas to send to your content development team.
  • Keywords with transactional intent, which could include content ideas that smoothly walk the reader down the conversion channel.
  • Keywords with commercial intent:  If you have a product to match, refer to your SEO team to figure out how to better optimize product pages for them to rank for these queries.  Alternatively, these can be product lists or other types of “buy now” landing pages that could match the exact high intent query.
  • Keywords with navigational intent may be further organized by intent: Some of these queries will have “buy now” intent, while others may signal transactional intent (e.g. potential customers researching your product reviews).  Some of these should be sent to your reputation management team, while some of these will help your sales or customer teams to better meet your clients’ expectations.  Most of these queries will be useful for more than one team.


Organize Keyword Lists by the Required Action


Next, organize your keyword lists further by a required action.  Some keywords may be good ideas for new content or new landing pages.  Some keywords may be used to optimize or update old pages.

Finally, organize those keywords by landing page type.  Informational and transactional queries may call for different types of content and landing page to better satisfy the users’ needs.  

For example, you can decide to create Blog posts, FAQ pages, On-site glossaries and Various types of cornerstone content which can also be called content upgrades.

You can use Excel or Google Spreadsheets to organize your keywords using multiple labels. You can go through your keyword lists and organize them by intent, required action, and the type of the landing page you plan to create.

View and copy this template here.

You can then integrate those spreadsheets into a marketing dashboard or project management platform like Cyfe or Trello for easier sharing.

Working with keywords takes time, but it defines your future marketing strategy on many levels, so don’t rush things!  Targeting user intent when planning and optimizing your content makes your whole digital strategy much better organized and more conversion-oriented.  With the above analysis, suddenly each of your web pages has a purpose.



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