Intent Matters: Guide to Keyword Commercial Intent

The search volume of a keyword doesn’t matter.

Yeah, you heard us.

It doesn’t matter how often or how much people are searching the internet for a keyword.

At least, it doesn’t matter if you want paying customers, rather than visitors. As Backlinko says in their article, “How to Determine a Keyword’s Commercial Intent,” many “SEO experts agree that – when it comes to choosing keywords — commercial intent is actually MORE important than search volume.”

If you want visitors who are also buyers, you need to find the keywords that paying customers use. To do that, you need to know which keywords have the highest commercial intent.

Fortunately, we are here to help you do just that. We’re going to explain what “commercial intent” means, the different categories of commercial intent keywords, how to analyze the commercial intent of keywords, and how to find keywords with the highest commercial intent.

Are you ready?

Commercial Intent: A Definition

This might seem self-explanatory, but for clarity’s sake let’s explain. If you want to sell something, or in other words, if you intend to commercialize on something, you have commercial intent. In terms of keywords, if a keyword has commercial intent then it is being used to search for something purchasable. Commercial intent often but not always carries some urgency with it. Paying customers don’t generally use commercial intent keywords unless they intend to buy soon.

Clear as mud? Good. Let’s look at some examples to clarify it a little. What are the different kinds of commercial intent keywords?

Four categories of commercial intent keywords

  1. Buy Now: Buy now keywords often include words such as: “discount,” “coupon,” “buy,” or “shipping.” These should be your top priority regarding commercial intent keywords because they are used by customers who want to buy something right now. You want those customers to find you and to find you fast.
  2. Product: Product keywords are used to search for a specific product, brand, or service, often with words like “best,” “review,” “comparison,” or “affordable” attached to them. These should be your second priority. Customers use them to do some market research and find the best option for them. If you have what they’re looking for, you want them to be able to find you before their research energy runs out.
  3. Informational: Informational keywords are less helpful because they have much lower commercial intent value.  They include phrases like “How to,” “Best way to,” and “I need to.” You can use them to increase traffic if nothing else, but customers who use these are trying to find information, not products.
  4. Tire Kicker: Tire kicker keywords are to be avoided at all costs. These are from searches that want something for free, so they will include words such as “free,” “torrent,” and “download.” You don’t want the traffic that these words will bring you.

As we can see, ideally you want to focus your energy on the first two: “Buy Now” and “Product” keywords. These will bring in paying customer traffic, not just informational or wandering traffic. How can you discern which keywords fall into these two categories? Read on.

Don’t Forget to Google Search

If you search for your keyword on Google, you can get a good first impression of how valuable your keyword is and how well it is currently performing. The number of ads that show up at the top of the results will indicate how much competition and value there is for your keyword. The more ads, the more competition, which means there are a lot of potential paying customers for that keyword.

Once you’ve seen the front page of Google and have an idea of what’s out there for your keyword, you can learn more specific information using other Google tools.

Google Adwords is Your Friend

The most comprehensive way to figure out the commercial intent of your keywords is to use Adwords’ Keyword Planner tool. Through this you can find a given keyword’s “Suggested Bid” (also known as Average CPC or Cost-Per-Click) and “Competition” which will help you judge which keyword is more valuable, and what the most currently valuable keywords on that topic are.

Suggested Bid and Competition

Follow the steps below to access these features using Adwords.

  1. Go to Google Adwords and their Keyword Planner tool.
  2. Click on “Search for new keywords using a phrase, website, or category.”
  3. Enter your keyword(s) and click “Get Ideas.”
  4. Look at the “suggested bid” column for your keyword, and check out how it compares to relevant keywords below yours.
  5. Look at the “competition” column for your keyword, and check out how it compares to relevant keywords below yours.

The higher the suggested bid, the more content providers are competing over those keywords, and thus the more valuable they probably are. If the listed keywords below yours have much higher suggested bids, you might want to use those, or at least emphasize those keywords more than your original keyword.

If you’re using informational keywords, you want “Low” competition so that you can get the most traffic from those keywords. “High” competition keywords are probably going to be the most valuable in terms of paying customers, so if you want keywords that fall into the “Buy Now” or “Product” categories, use those.

Using informational keywords isn’t a bad thing: they can certainly help you gain traffic and increase awareness among your potential customer base and target market. However, commercial intent is the factor of keywords that you want to focus on if you need customers who are looking to buy your products or services. Use the steps listed above to analyze the commercial intent of your possible keywords, and you’ll be able to curate content that will grow your business rather than merely get traffic hits.

If you have too much to do and need someone to help you with your online presence, don’t fret. There are professional content creators who can help. Dominate with SEO is an experienced company that can assist with content creation, keywords, and give you tips for strengthening your brand’s position on the internet. Dominate with SEO’s professional team can help you grow your customer base as well increase your exposure and revenue, so contact them today via their Discovery form.

Leave a Reply