What Are Long-Tail Keywords? | SEOblog.com

What Are Long-Tail Keywords?

Pat Bechtel

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Keyword research is a very important part of digital marketing and SEO. If there is a lot of competition in your market, and everyone is trying to target the same keywords, you are likely experimenting with longer keywords. So, you might be wondering, what are long-tail keywords?

These key phrases that contain about three, four or five words are much more specific than short keywords. So, when people search for longer keywords, they’re more likely to be very interested in your business and are close to becoming a conversion. Or, they may be using a voice search, like Siri or Alexa. These searches tend to be a little more conversational.

Finding Keywords for Your Blog

The main keyword for your blog will be the one you want people to identify you with. So, if you write a blog about clothing for women, you might want to use the keyword “women’s clothing.” But you can’t keep using this key phrase, or all your pages will be competing with each other. So, for each individual post, you’ll want to focus on different keywords that relate to your main keyword, like “female flip flops” or “women’s pants.”

You could use long-tailed keywords to support those shorter primary keywords on your posts. Or you can use a long-tailed keyword as your primary keyword. For example, you could write an entry about affordable short skirts for women.

Why Use Long-Tail Keywords

Even if not quite as many people are searching for these terms, it is easier to rank for them. For example, you may be finding it tough to get on the first page of Google for the term “hoagie”. Meanwhile, your site may be the first result for “chicken parmesan hoagie near me.” Plus, if someone is doing a search for that specific term, it’s likely that they’re hungry, they find your site, and they come buy a chicken parmesan hoagie from you immediately.

Additionally, if you’re running a pay-per-click (PPC) campaign, long-tailed keywords are often less expensive to use. Therefore, it’s easier to get the very best bang for your buck.

Long-Tail vs. Short-Tail Keywords

If you’ve been working on your SEO and are analyzing your website traffic, you may have noticed that you’re getting lots of impressions with only a few clicks. Short-tail keywords are more general, and more people may search for them.

Using longer keywords tends to bring fewer impressions but more clicks. You’ll draw in higher-quality traffic with the exact type of consumer you’re looking for. Although, you probably shouldn’t completely throw out short-tail keywords. They are a great way to draw in traffic and build brand awareness, even if they’re not bringing you conversions.

Finding Long-Tailed Keywords

If you’re experimenting with long-tail keywords, you may have tried a few and run out of ideas for more. That’s okay. There’s no need for you to go at it alone.

There are a couple things you can do to generate more useful keywords. First, you can just go to Google and start typing in short-tail keywords. Google will probably autofill some long-tail keywords for you. For example, let’s do a search for “pizza.” As soon as you type it into Google, it will suggest things like “pizza near me,” “pizza recipe,” “Pizza Hut,” “pizza places near me,” and “pizza sauce recipe.

Also, if another business already has the featured snippet for the keyword you were planning to target, Google may offer you some “people also ask” options. You can click through those and see if there are any openings for you there.

Once you’ve exhausted this avenue, there are professional keyword tools that you can use. Google Search Console has a performance report. You may be able to use that to find keywords that you’re ranking for, but you didn’t even know about. Google Ads does have a keyword planner, but there are some better options out there. Ahrefs and SEMrush both have keyword tools. All you need to do is type in your short-tail keyword, and they’ll give you tons of long-tail keywords you can try out.

Additionally, you can use these sites to explore the keywords that your competitors are using for their websites. Then, you can use this knowledge to try to come up with other key phrases that they aren’t utilizing, but people would still be searching for.

When it comes down to keyword research, it’s all about getting into the minds of your potential customers and trying to figure out what they’d be searching for when they need your services. You may want to create some buyer personas. This way, you’re less likely to create content that’s not useful for your audience.

Also, it may help to identify how your products and services will benefit people. Specifically, what pain points do your customers have, and how can you help fix them? Instead of “running shoes,” you might use the key phrase “lightweight running shoes for flat feet.

Creating Content With Your Keywords

Even if you weren’t an English major, it’s still possible to create top-quality content for your website. But it’s important to remember to try not to overdo it with your keywords. Keyword stuffing can negatively impact your rankings. If you find a long-tail keyword that you don’t think you can write a whole page about, there is an alternative. You could just add it to an already-existing page on your website.

You may have the urge to use a longer keyword you think will rank but doesn’t really fit your website and your business. You should fight that urge. Visitors who come to your site because of that key phrase will probably just be annoyed by you. Your product can’t help them with their current problem.

There is more to SEO than just finding the right keywords and implementing them. However, this is an important piece of the puzzle.

We hope that these tips help you find the right keywords for your website.

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