What is Keyword Intent? – How to Convert Low Volume into High Return

Keyword Intent

What is Keyword Intent and How to take advantage

Are your SEO efforts leading you nowhere?

Tired of keywords that don’t boost search traffic (and even worse) bringing in low conversions?

If yes, keep reading. Because today, we’ll discuss “keyword intent,” which is an often forgotten principle in the world of SEO!

What’s Keyword Intent?

It’s a way of classifying keywords.

Most people classify keywords by competitiveness or search counts. And the previous two metrics look at analytic stats.

But keyword intent is different. Here, you’re looking at buyer behaviour, and specifically the buyer’s cycle.

Keyword intent looks at the reasons why people enter certain search queries and how far they are from a purchase.

People Use Search Engines for Different Reasons.

Some people’s user search queries with the intent to buy. Others are simply looking for more information on a service.

There are many reason why buyers use certain keywords. And you have to find the keyword that match the goals of your content!

Types of Keyword Intent.

Generally, search engine specialists classify keyword intent into 4 categories – those being…

    • Informational.
    • Navigational.
    • Commercial.
  • Transactional.

Each category represents a different stage of the buyer cycle. And knowing which keywords go on which pages is vital for high conversions.

Below, we’ll look at each category – giving you more information to help you formulate an SEO strategy!

First – Informational Keywords.

Those keywords represent the start of the buyer cycle. And here, you’re looking at phrases that indicate curiosity.

Those will mostly be questions with the desire to learn more about a certain topic – or to find solutions for a certain problem.

Informational keywords tend to represent an overwhelming majority of high-volume searches (about 80% according to statistics). In fact, they represent the majority of keywords!

So you’re likely to come across a fair share in your research phase, and you’ll have to sift in accordance to what your traffic’s looking for.

Where to Use Them.

Informational keywords are mostly used on blogs, wikis, and any database that provides detailed information.

They’re the keywords you’ll use to optimize an article or piece of content (that doesn’t focus on selling a product).

But do note, the content you write has to match the intent of the keyword. And the content you write must be very specific.


If you’re writing a weight loss article, you cannot afford to jam in multiple informational keywords for high rankings.

Instead, you want to hone in on a specific issue, while trying to solve that in an article. That may be something like “how to adjust macro ratios for a Keto diet.”

Why Hone in On Specific Issues?

You do so for traffic retention.

Informational intent searchers want “relevant information” and fast. They don’t want redundant content that doesn’t resonate with their needs.

Giving that to them ensures they stay to view more of your content – thus increasing the likelihood of a conversion!

What Do Informational Keywords Look Like?

Any content title that clearly solves an issue counts as an informational keyword.

You can check out the list of modifiers below to get an idea…

    • How to…
    • Best way…
    • The guide to…
    • Why…
    • …Tips…
  • Should I – Do I Need to – How Often?

Now do note, the previous modifiers are not the keywords themselves. They’re simply common modifiers to informational keywords.

You see, all informational keywords are long-tail. They’re mostly questions or walkthroughs that target specific issues.

So don’t expect to find a 2-3 informational keyword. Those phrases tend to extend past the 5 word mark!

Second – Navigational Keywords.

This is the second-step of the buyer cycle.

Here, your traffic already knows about your brand. But they’re often searching for your website (or a certain product) to learn more.

Many people count navigational keywords as a “sub-category” of informational keywords. And the reason is, there isn’t a clear desire to buy at that stage.

But still – for your traffic to know about your brand is a big leap from “pure information searches.”

How So?

When people search for information, they don’t necessarily care about a “specific brand.”

They just want the information. And they’re looking for pages that accurately and clearly answer their questions.

Now, if your brand’s website happens to do that job, then kudos to you. And if it doesn’t, then a competitor will.

The point is, with “informational intent,” your traffic isn’t looking for a brand. But when it comes to navigation – your clients know about your business.

And what that means is – keyword research won’t work at this stage.


Most of your navigational keywords will focus on including a “specific product” or your “business name” in your content.

So if your business name is ABC Enterprises – that’ll be the keyword. And if your product name is similarly specialized, that’s what navigational intent will search.

Where Do Navigational Keywords Go?

As a rule, they go on product pages and static pages.

On static pages, you want keywords that mention your business name. Those will be your homepage, about, contact, and whatever show up on a navigation bar.

As for product pages, you simply want to include the product name. Make sure it’s in the title and product description for best results.

Important: Optimising On-Site Searching.

This point matters for both navigation intent and commercial intent (which is our next point).

Sometimes, potential visitors might already by on your site. And they’re trying to navigate for a certain page (without jumping off to Google).

They’ll use the drop-down menus you provide – in addition to any search bars available.

So if you don’t have an on-site search bar, be sure to install one (in a visible location)!

Third – Commercial Keywords.

At this stage of the buyer cycle, the searcher knows about your brand. They also see your products as potentially what they need.

But still, the buyer hasn’t made a purchase decision yet. Instead, they’re focused on learning more about your products.

In a sense, they’re researching the products in-depth. And instead of seeking answers to specific questions – they’re looking for concrete info on your services.

What That Includes.

This includes your product specifications, and how it shapes up compared to competition.

It also includes intensive research on your brand. Here, many buyers will try to learn about your history, quality, and credentials.

It’s an intensive research stage – but it’s done with a serious consideration to buy.

Where Do Such Keywords Go?

Commercial keywords go on product pages, sales pages, and review sections.

Product pages are obvious. But when it comes to reviews, you might struggle on how to optimize those…

Our recommendation is to write review articles. You can design articles that market your products, by explaining how they benefit users.

You can even take the chance to include “in-depth information” that is otherwise too much to put on a product page!

What Do Commercial Keywords Look Like?

You want keywords that showcase product and brand quality. And those include words such as “top/best/quality.”

Other markers include words that signal additional benefits – such as guarantee, discounts, and special offers.

In fact, going back to the review articles idea, you can design list articles that compare different brands to your product.

Use that to satisfy the commercial intent. Your clients will greatly appreciate it, and it’ll increase the chances of an immediate purchase!

Extra Tip: Use Commercial Keywords for Backlink Keywords.

If you’re doing backlink marketing, you’re posting affiliate content on other websites. You’re then linking back to your own products.

We recommend using commercial keywords as backlink anchors. That way, the affiliate content has a higher chance of ranking for commercial search intent.

So you hit two birds with one stone. The backlinks increase your search engine ranking. And, those researching for commercial intent find a good marketing article!

Fourth – Transactional Keywords.

The last stage of the buyer cycle.

Those are keywords buyers search when they’re heading straight to a product page, or your checkout cart.

Your clients do not do research here. Instead, their aim is to immediately buy. So the keywords are straightforward.

You want to focus on ranking for your website name and product names, instead of high volume keywords.

Low Volume Sells.

At this point, you’re not trying to attract traffic. You’re actually trying to convert that traffic into long-term buyers.

So you’re not relying on appealing to search engines. Instead, most of your product marketing at this stage is done through backlinks and sales posts/emails.

When finding the best transactional keywords, pay less attention to volume. And the reason is, the conversion rates on those keywords are high.

Final Note.

As we’ve outlined early on in the article, most of your keyword efforts go to informational intent. And the rest is easy to outline.

From there, understand that keyword intent is a matter of “positioning.” It has less to do with finding the right keywords, and more with putting keywords on the right pages.

You want informational keywords on “how to” content, commercial keyword on “product reviews,” and so forth.

Done right, you can enjoy higher conversions.

Even if you end up getting less overall traffic, the percentage (and amount) of converted clients will be higher if you’re not misplacing keywords!