What are long-tail keywords?
You’ve probably heard the term before, but haven’t really given it a minute’s thought. More importantly, how can this help you?
At the time of this writing, since my website (blog) was less than two months old, I was using long-tail keywords in my articles and over that time have ended up on the first page of a search result with the likes of Google and Bing (and others too) take care of using SEO (Search Engine Optimization).
Here are some examples you can try to test this:
- Find keyword phrases – landed on the first page, position 3
- Learning about keyword phrases – landed on the first page, position 6
- Keyword tool to find sweet spots – landed on the first page, position 1
- The Best SEO Keyword Tools – landed on the first page, position 2
I could specify 20 different keyword phrases that would send me to the first page and it’s only day 50!
Long-tail keywords are keyword phrases that add a “tail” to the natural keywords typed into a search engine (especially Google, Bing, and many others), which is a natural way your visitors come across when browsing of the web (or ask questions) whether they are simply looking for information or are ready to buy your product or service.
For example, if you use the shorter keyword phrase “search engine optimization” (with double quotes), you’ll get around 115 million results with an average global monthly search of around 823,000, and you’re competing with too many similar related niches/businesses. Keep in mind that there are only ten spots (on the first page) to aim for, as most users won’t scroll past the first page; at best second.
Extending the above example with a more natural search term, e.g. B. “Tips for search engine optimization”, then the following happens:
- This reduces the number of results, which is good news that allows you to rank higher in search results.
- The average monthly search may not go down or even increase, which is also good news as more users search for this term as well.
- You attract a certain type of visitor based on the keyword phrase, in this case the person is looking for SEO tips and may not be ready to buy your product or service just yet. This is called a prospector.
- Using longer tail keyword phrases will stay in a top position longer than a simple one or two keyword phrase due to the sheer volume of traffic and competition.
- The longer the keyword phrase, the more permutations of part or all of the phrase will be used with other search terms, helping you keep presence on the top page in the event a long-tail phrase becomes too saturated.
There are many techniques for finding long-tail keyword phrases, and the most popular is of course the Google AdWords Keyword Tool (just search for “keyword tool”).