Online business has become very competitive in the past few years, and online brands are now constantly competing with each other using various search engine optimization (SEO) strategies that can get them higher rankings on search engines, bringing them more traffic. These businesses make use of SEO techniques that range from optimizing web pages for mobile phone users to using backlinks (links from other websites), increase user experience on their websites, sharing content on social media, and several other techniques. However, there is one important SEO technique that seems to have been forgotten over time, but is still quite effective when formulating SEO strategy. This is the use of long-tail keywords.
What are long-tail keywords?
Long-tail keywords are longer search phrases that online users are likely to enter into search engines when searching for information, products, or services. Unlike the normal keywords, long-tail keywords contain more words, and they are very specific. For example, when searching for SEO services, users can simply type in the keyword “SEO services.” A long-tail keyword version of this would be “Professional SEO services in Vancouver” or “Where can I find SEO services in Portland?” Both keywords are longer, having more than 3 phrases, and they are more specific, clearly explaining what the user might be looking for.
The use of long-tail keywords is a proven SEO strategy that can bring your online business lots of benefits. Below is a look at some of the advantages of using long-tail keywords in your SEO strategy:
1. They have less competition
One of the main benefits of long-tail keywords is that they have less competition for search engine results. Since the keywords are more specific, the search results displayed are fewer, which increases the chance of your website receiving higher search engine rankings.
2. They result in better search engine rankings
In the past few years, algorithms used to rank search engines have been modified in order to provide more natural results to the users’ search queries. Long-tail keywords helps to promote natural search results since they are more specific, and provide detailed information on the services or products being offered. Therefore, using long-tail keywords increases the chances of your website receiving higher search engine rankings. For example, using the keyword “SEO services in Portland” will give you higher search engine rankings compared just “SEO services”.
3. They provide better targeting
Long-tail keywords are more detailed, specific, and relevant to the users’ search queries. Therefore, they provide a more specific targeting of the potential audience, and provide them with more information on what you are offering. In addition, long-tail keywords target customers who are more likely to buy the services or products you are selling. For example, users searching for “Where can I find quality SEO services in Portland?” have already done a lot of research and made a decision on what they are looking for. They are therefore more likely to take the intended action when they come across your website on search engine results.
This webinar (a bit long) will give you a detailed orientation as why long tail keywords are important:
Tips on how to use long-tail keywords
Using long-tail keywords to improve your website’s search engine ranking is quite similar to how you would use normal keywords. Below is a look at some of the tips on how to get you started.
1. Research keyword ideas
The first step to using long-tail keywords is coming up with a few ideas of key phrases that you can use. You can do this by first considering the products and services you are offering, and then predicting what your potential audience would search for. For example, if you are offering SEO services and then assuming that your potential customers are searching for affordable services, you can come up with the keyword idea “affordable SEO services”.
2. Consider the search volume of the keywords
After coming up with the keyword idea, the next step is to research it and consider its search volume (the amount of searches it has received), as well as that of other related keywords. You can do this by using the Google Keyword Tool, which will also display other several related keywords. When you are researching the keyword, you can tweak it to increase its relevance and provide better targeting. For example, you can add location to the above keyword idea and come up with “affordable SEO services in Portland”. You can also add more phrases to reduce the competition that the keyword will receive, “Where can you get affordable SEO services in Portland”.
3. Create content and use the keywords to optimize it
After coming up with good keyword ideas, you can then take the ones with the best search volumes, high but not too high to have a lot of competition, and then use them to create high quality content. This will help to optimize your website for search engines, increasing the chances of customers finding your online business.
If you want to read more, you can check this tweet guide:
— Buffer (@buffer) August 14, 2016
Long-tail keywords have been part of search engine optimization for several years now, and despite other new SEO techniques that are constantly coming up, they still remain formidable in increasing search engine rankings. Therefore, when you are coming up with various ways on how you can optimize your website on search engines, you should consider using long-tail keywords as one of the techniques.