When it comes to working with keywords, long-tail keywords are usually more preferred than short-tail keywords.
Experienced webmasters know how beneficial and rewarding it is to use them to create content for their readers.
If you just found out about long-tail keywords and would like to know what they are, how they work, their benefits and how to find them in your niche, then this post is what you need to read.
I have discussed long-tail keywords at length here and this post will help you get all the essential information on them.
What are Long Tail Keywords
These are long phrases that people use to search for a specific aspect of a given topic through search engines.
They can be as long as the person who is making the search wants them to be based on how specific they want the search results to be.
Some examples of long-tail keywords include;
“What are long-tail keywords?” (5 words)
“How can I discover keyword opportunities?” (6 words)
“Where can I buy pizza after midnight in USA?” (9 words)
From these examples, you can see that long-tail keywords vary in length and each indicates a particular need that a searcher has.
In essence, when long-tail keywords are used, queries are made in a unique way so that one gets the most specific answer to their needs.
If say I went online and entered one word like “fashion” I will probably get various results ranging from the definition of that word, history, various fashion trends and so much more.
But if I want to go to the best fashion design school and learn much more about fashion, I will type something in the line of “the best fashion design schools in the world”.
Once I do that, the results that I get will be specific to that and hence I can now click and get the information that I am looking for.
This is one of the ways in which long-tail keywords benefit searchers and hence always preferred for these kinds of searches.
Despite benefiting both the website owners and searchers, long-tail keywords make it easy for search engines to provide content to various people.
When a piece of content has used long-tail keywords in the proper way, it comes out as the best fit for people using the same keywords to look for information, and search engines help connect the two parties in an efficient way.
Differences between Long Tail and Short Tail Keywords
We will differentiate the two based on the number of words that each has, the search goal, and the traffic they generate.
Starting with the number of words, short keywords contain 1-2 words whilst long-tail ones could have more than four words. That is why they are referred to as short and long respectively because of their length.
Next, looking at the kind of traffic that they bring in, short tail keywords bring in a lot of traffic, but also super high competition while long-tail keywords bring in fairly less traffic compared to short-tail keywords but the traffic is very targeted.
Also, long-tail keywords come with less competition.
To further understand this, when a keyword is highly competitive it means ranking well with it will be really difficult because one has to battle it out with many other websites, some of which could be very authoritative and could be given better rankings than your website which is just starting to get attention.
On the other hand, if the keyword is less competitive, it means that the possibility of ranking better is very high and hence such keywords including the long tail ones should be preferred.
Next, looking at search goals, with short tail keywords, one finds generalized information on a topic because the word could have been touched on in another topic on a website that could be a huge brand but doesn’t address what the researcher is looking for.
With long-tail keywords, however, since the search is very specific, the information the researcher will get will be very personalized such that one gets to find exactly what he or she is looking for.
Benefits of Long-Tail Keywords
Here are some of the benefits you get from using long-tail keywords on your website:
1. Help you get ahead of your competitors
This is because these keywords give you a unique, narrowed down area to cover and hence reduce competition for you which in return helps you rank well on the search engines and also brings you high-value traffic that is looking for exactly what you have discussed in your article.
2. Direct website owners on the kind of content they should come up with
Unlike short-tail keywords that give you a general topic, long-tail keywords are more specific to a particular aspect or area of a topic that helps websites get areas they can cover that people want to know about.
They guide them on the areas that people need help on and thus can tailor their content so that it meets those exact needs.
3. Help people looking for information get to narrow down their search
When most people go to search for information online, they take advantage of the accuracy of results that long-tail keywords help them in getting the kind of information they wanted. These keywords help them to avoid wasting time going in circles looking for particular content.
4. Have better conversion rates
Due to their abilities to bring accurate results, when people use them to get information, they are matched with the right websites that offer the type of detailed information they are interested in and therefore helps the websites have good conversion rates.
5. Help in answering voice search queries
It’s obvious that we speak faster than we can type.
Having this in mind, most people now prefer to use voice search because all they have to do is ask the question out loud.
Since voice searches are often precise and longer, attending to those queries becomes much easier because all a website needs to do is work with long-tail keywords to answer that question.
6. Increase the visibility of a website’s content
If the content that a website is providing to its audience is of good quality and is focused on one specific area that many of the competitors are not covering, the website is exposed to people who want the information it shares and therefore increases its visibility.
7. Help you rank for short-tail keywords too
When you use long-tail keywords you also mention the short-tail ones along the way. This helps rank you for both which in return results in more traffic if you cover the topic you are talking about exhaustively and optimize the content you write.
How to Come up With Long Tail Keywords
• Through brainstorming
One thing you can do is try to think about the topic or the idea related to what you are looking for and then add a few words on the topic to target a specific aspect of the topic which you think readers would use when searching for a topic.
For example, if the topic is on music download, you can build on that so that it looks like, “How to download music on iTunes” so that it becomes more specific to downloading music on iTunes since that is the platform you want to use.
• Using Google’s related search section
Google’s related search section is the bottom-most part of the search results that Google and some other search engines offer that have keywords related to the one you used to make a search to help you target a specific thing on a topic.
For a writer or a website owner, the related search area serves many benefits as it gives you more ideas of what other aspects to cover other than the one you want to know about, that could be quite useful in the long term.
However, since Google is already giving suggestions on these keywords, it means that a lot of people are seeing and using them and hence can be highly competitive.
What you can do, however, is to look for unique ways through which you can phrase them differently so that they are personalized to you and get to benefit you in a way that brings your website traffic.
• Using keyword tools
There are many keyword tools out there that you can use to generate keywords. Some of the well-known tools include Ubersuggest, SEMrush, Soovle, Ahrefs, and Jaaxy.
What you do with these tools is this.
Say for example you are using Jaaxy.
You just type in the keyword tool the keyword you want long tail suggestions on and you will get a variety which you can then assess using various variables on the dashboard.
Some of these variables are the traffic that the keyword will bring in, the average number of searches it has as well as the competition around that keyword. This ensures that you are getting the best long-tail keyword.
You can also find more long-tail keywords on Jaaxy by looking at the right side where you will see the “Related” section.
• Using Google Suggest
Google suggest is a technique that makes use of the words suggestions that Google provides to help people who are searching for something find it faster.
When you go to Google and start typing a phrase that you want to use to look up something in there, Google provides suggestions as you type to help you have a much better-refined search.
Some of these searches are usually long phrased and often make good long-tail keywords.
• Using Q & A sites
If you don’t know Q&A sites well, they are websites where users are allowed to ask questions and get them answered by other users who know the topics being asked about well enough to answer them.
A good example of these sites is Quora.
You will get lots of questions asked there and the words used to ask the questions can make awesome long-tail keywords which can be used by someone looking for ideas to create content around, for their websites.
These sites will help you discover specific areas of a given topic that people are interested in learning more about and get to have something to talk about on your website that will interest your readers.
A good tip to filter these keywords and get only the best long-tail keywords is to use a keyword tool, by taking those questions in the Q&A sites and analyzing their traffic and competition to determine which ones are easy to be ranked with, which have good traffic as well.
• Getting ideas from your competitors
Spying on your competitors is another way to get long-tail keywords that can boost the traffic of your website. Some of your competitors may have done good keyword research and may have uncovered keywords that barely any other competitor is having.
And looking into their website can also help you get to know these hot keywords and get some extra traffic as well. Competitor analysis can also give you keyword ideas that you had not thought of before and which your competitors are not even using.
Your competitor can act as a catalyst for new long-tail keyword ideas
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on Long Tail Keywords
Question: Why is it important to focus on long-tail keywords?
Answer: The major reasons are so that you reduce competition for yourself, become specific and detailed about a topic, and get to create unique content that gets you more traffic.
Question: How many times can I use long-tail keywords in my article?
Answer: Well, you can restrict yourself to a maximum of three times to ensure that you don’t bombard your audience with too much usage of the keywords, which is pretty much keyword stuffing, something that reduces the quality of your work. Also, make sure that you place them correctly and spread them out in your content and meta description.
Question: What is the best way to find long-tail keywords?
Answer: Using a keyword tool is the best option because you get to assess the effectiveness of those keywords based on variables such as rank difficulty, search volume, traffic as well as how competitive they are. And this rewards you and gives you the assurance that you are working with keywords that not only have a good amount of traffic but are also less competitive.
Question: Will I have a hard time using keyword tools to find long-tail keywords?
Answer: Not really because the tool you are using will guide you on what to do. And if you cannot understand a few things in there you can always research online especially through using YouTube videos to ensure that you understand fully how the tool works.
Choosing a keyword tool that is easy to use like my favorite tool, Jaaxy, is also a great way to ensure that your experience is much easier.
In summary, long-tail keywords are going to help you rank well for different topics and bring in high quality that will convert if you write content that best tackles what people are looking for.
Getting these keywords is also very easy if you work with the techniques I mentioned.
Now the ball is in your court, determine what topic you’d like to get long-tail keywords for and make the best use of them on your website.
If you have any questions related to long-tail keywords or keywords in general, feel free to drop them below and I will be more than happy to answer them. 🙂