What are long-tail keywords, and how to use them effectively?

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Keyword research is getting more competitive every day, all the ranking depends on the keywords you use in your content. In SEO there are short (1-2 words) keywords and long-tail keywords. With the long-tail keyword being so widely used, let’s understand what is long-tail keywords and how to use them.

What are long-tail keywords?

Long-tail keywords are search queries that contain 3 or more words and typically aim to target very specific audiences. These search queries generally have fewer monthly searches than short 1 or 2-word keyword phrases but they can drive targeted traffic to websites much better than other types of keywords.

With the market becoming more competitive every day, it becomes harder for your website to be found through strategies like PPC (pay per click) ads, running Facebook ads, etc; these strategies would take years before you see any significant progress towards your goals. For this reason, it is important for long-tail keywords to be used effectively.

The strategy of long-tail keywords often revolves around the following:

what is long tail keywords in seo

1) Creating content that solves search queries (which would require long-tail keyword ideas). This way, you get your audience’s search queries and you can answer them with helpful content that is very specific to their search query; therefore, helping them solve their problem. This will result in a lot of traffic from a still relatively small amount of searches per month on SERP’s (search engine results pages).

2) Eventually, it may be better for you to have a more targeted SEO strategy towards long-tail keywords rather than going for short 1 or 2-word keywords like “buy shoes online” or “cheap laptops”.

3) You may even rank well for long-tail keywords in your industry especially if you include long-tail keyword phrases in the title tags and meta descriptions of your articles. For example, It is better to rank number 1 for the long-tail keyword phrase “how to calculate compound gear ratios” than ranking number 2 for the keyword phrase “gear ratios”, especially when the latter has way more monthly searches than the former.    

4) This can be applied when it comes to social media too! It would help to have a long-term strategy with long-tail keywords on social media. For example, you can have long-tail keywords on your Twitter bio or on the about section on your Facebook page.

5) Long-tail keywords can also be used as search query strings for PPC (Pay Per Click) ads; they are cheaper since they have less competition.

On top of this, creating detailed content based upon queries with less competition will result in receiving targeted traffic for these long-tail queries.

Pro’s & Con’s of targeting long-tail keywords

Pro’s of targeting long-tail keywords:

  1. Long-tail Keywords results in better conversion
  2. Long-tail keywords have less competition and more benefits, long-tail keywords don’t get outdated as often.
  3. Strategies including long-tail keywords have less work SEO work and more traffic thus you can save time and money.
  4. Most businesses have long-term goals which mean they would be open to long-tail keyword ideas both on content marketing as well as PPC (pay per click).

Cons of targeting long-tail keywords:

  1. Long-tail keywords have low search volume
  2. Strategies including long-tail keywords, don’t offer short-term results; therefore, they require a bit more patience than usual. This is the main reason why most people prefer to choose short 1 or 2-word keyword phrases despite their flaws. This is also one of the reasons long-tail queries are often ignored.
  3. You can’t track your progress in terms of rankings, keywords, or conversions by using google analytics.
  4. Long-tail keyword ideas are harder to find since they are not as commercialized as 1 or 2-word key phrases. This means there is no ” long-tail keyword idea database” for you to go through and copy.

Conclusion: why should you use long-tail keywords?

Using long-tail queries can be successfully used when you are in a competitive niche where short keywords have a lot of competition.

This is because most people will rather use more of the popular short 1 or 2-word keyword phrases than opt for the long-tail queries which have low popularity but more of a long-term effect!

Sooner or later, many businesses would start looking for online marketing strategies where they can rank for long-tail keywords.

Article summary

1) You should start using long-tail query strings that consist of 3 or 4-word keyword phrases, then integrate these long-tail query strings into your content to create better search engine rankings in the long run! That way you will get higher returns than just using 1 or 2-word keyphrases in contents for your PPC ads.

2) Optimizing your website for both short and long-tail keyword phrases means you won’t have to worry about keyword rank decay in the future when you decide to use longer keywords in your content. This is because there are still many ways to optimize long keywords.

3) Long-tail queries help you rank higher in the long run because most people will use 1 or 2-word key phrases than 3+ word long-tail keywords which mean fewer searches and less traffic for your SEO efforts.

4) Many people think there are not many long-term strategies besides the short head, mid head, and long head highly commercialized 1 or 2-word keyword phrases but this is not true since using long-tail query strings over time would mean better rankings in the future compared to only using 1 or 2-word search queries!

5) There are many advantages to using longer keywords in your website content as well as PPC ads compared to only using 1 or 2-word keyword phrases! These include less competition, more traffic, and higher returns on investment over a month’s time period.

7) The future of online marketing includes new ways of optimizing for traffic, conversions, and rankings all at once with the help of using both short and long-tail keyphrases along with their corresponding search queries. If you used just 1 or 2-word keyword phrases before, then now is the time to start integrating longer keywords into your content instead!

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One thought on “What are long-tail keywords, and how to use them effectively?

  • December 9, 2021 at 5:21 am

    Great article. To summarize, The reason why marketers choose long tail keywords are for two reasons
    1) Long tail keywords will have relatively less difficulty
    2) Long tail keywords will have a better search intent
    Long tail keywords are the ones which majority of the marketers ignore, so you can definitely leverage them and make the best use of them. There are various tools in the market to find out long tail keywords, one of the tools which provides you few accurate long tail keywords list are SEMRush, Ahrefs.
    I follow kuware.com for Marketing related info. Hope this helps.


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