When finding the best ways to have your site noticed by your target audience, long-tail keywords will be your best bet. Rather than trying to rank for more difficult keywords on the first try, your strategy should be centered around long-tail keywords because they best match the search intent of the user. There’s a reason why the majority of the most profitable traffic online stems from using these keywords.
In this guide, we’ll explore long-tail keywords more closely and help you understand how powerful these keywords are for your business. As SEO continues to become more focused on helpful content matching search intent, we believe that long-tail keywords will increase in importance.
Long-Tail Keywords vs. Short-Tail Keywords in SEO?
There are several distinctions between long-tail and short-tail keywords. Let’s start with explaining what short-tail keywords are.
Short-tail keywords are often used to drive a lot of traffic to your site. As you might have guessed it, these keywords are anywhere between 1 and 3 words long. Some examples of short-tail keywords include “men’s t-shirts,” “puppy food,” “baseball,” and “barber shop.” These keywords generate tons of traffic, but there’s a catch.
They are usually much harder to rank for and will take a lot more time until you start seeing results. Not to say that it’s impossible, but even if you do succeed in ranking for some of them, you’re likely not going to get the right kind of traffic to your site. With the traffic you get from these keywords, there’s less of a chance that those users are going to convert.
Long-tail keywords are different because they are much more specific and tailored to what people are searching for. You’ll typically find long-tail keywords used in blog posts and articles answering questions people might have. “Best web designers in the Atlanta area” would be an example of a long-tail keyword someone might use if they wanted to find a good web design company to work with.
The pay-off with using a long-tail keyword strategy is immense considering how over 70% of all internet searches online come as a result of using long-tail keywords in website content.
Benefits of Long-Tail Keywords in More Detail
For several reasons, long-tail keywords make for a much more sustainable SEO strategy for your business website in the long run. The first reason you need to incorporate long-tail keywords into your SEO strategy is that the conversion rates are typically much higher.
On average, long-tail keywords have 2.5x the conversion rate of short-tail and head keywords. This is because people who are searching for very specific, niche topics are more likely to find what they need and take action whereas less specific searches aren’t going to yield such results.
In PPC marketing, long-tail keywords have much lower cost-per-click than broader keywords too. You will save a lot of money and not have your efforts marginalized by less profitable keywords out there. You can also boost your quality scores with long-tails provided your landing page and the ads you create use them properly. That means no keyword stuffing or anything else like this which could drive people away.
Long-tail keywords also tend to lead to better quality website sessions. You will see that the bounce rates decrease with website sessions that came from users typing in long-tail keywords in their searches. Furthermore, users will spend more time on your website and not feel driven to go anywhere else.
In modern SEO, the activity on your website and what actions people perform makes all the difference. Google will rank websites that give their customers the best user experience and satisfaction and long-tail keywords are a part of providing your audience with more useful content.
Best Ways to Use Long-Tail Keywords On Your Website
Now that you know more about long-tail keywords, what’s the most practical application for them on your website? When finding long-tail keywords, you can start by typing a keyword into Google’s search bar. You will see a lot of related keywords underneath which could be additional landing pages and articles you can create content around.
You want to find the most profitable keywords which are directly related to what your target audience wants to see the most. When it comes to creating blog content, for example, each of these keywords could be ideas for the articles you will post.
After you’ve found the right ones to use, make sure you mention them a few times naturally throughout your content. Don’t overdo it though. You don’t need to go crazy with how many times you specify your long-tail keyword of choice.
Google and other search engines can detect when you’re overusing your keywords and your pages might not rank as well as intended. Also, make sure you mention your long-tail keywords in your meta description and title tags for the most favorable results. Don’t forget about adding the long-tail keyword to the alt-text on your images.
After you’ve published your new content, see how it performs in search engines over the next several months. Keep an eye out for any major changes in Google’s search algorithm and focus on finding more long-tail keywords to keep your website content fresh.
Long-tail keywords are worth the time to find and use for your business website because it doesn’t take as much effort to rank well for them. There’s nothing wrong with basing your site around shorter keywords that generate more traffic. However, if your mission is to get the best leads and conversions, long-tails are going to win each time.
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