Long-Tail Keywords

What is Long-tail keywords?

A long-tail keyword is a search term that has three or more words. For example, in the search term “fingerless gloves,” the two words are “fingerless” and “gloves.” Long-tail keywords are more specific than short-tail keywords, which are two-word phrases. 

But it's much deeper than that...

How this works

Long-tail keywords are longer and more descriptive keyword phrases that visitors are more likely to use when closer to the point of purchase or when using voice search. They're a little counter-intuitive at first, but they can be incredibly useful if you know how to use them. 

Consider it this way: if you are a company that sells coffee tables, it is likely that your pages will never appear near the top of the organic "coffee tables" search because there is too much competition (especially if you are a startup or a smaller company). 

But if you deal with contemporary art-deco coffee table, keywords like "Modern Art Deco-influenced oval coffee table" will reliably find those customers searching for precisely that product. Managing long-tail keywords is just a matter of creating stronger communication lines between your company and consumers who are already out there, actively searching for what you're selling.  

Think about it: if you google the word "coffee table" (a very vague keyword often referred to as "head term"), what are the chances that you'll end up clicking through to a sale? 

But if you google "marble rectangle coffee table" you know just what you're looking for, and you're probably prepared to pay for it. You would certainly draw less traffic with a long-tail keyword than you would do with a more popular one, but the traffic you do draw will be better: more concentrated, more dedicated, and more desirous of your services.   

Why focus on long-tail keywords versus main keywords?

There are three major reasons why you would want to concentrate on long-tail keywords:  

Long-tail keywords are not that competitive.

When it pertains to SEO, long tails are much less competitive than shorter head terms. (What makes it easier for them to rank) For instance, a short tail keyword like "coffee table" has more than 6 billion Google results: So if you're going to rank #1 in Google for that query, you're going to need 2 billion more pages. 

coffee table serp

Well. Yeah. 

On the other side, look at the long-tail version of the keyword, like "modern coffee table." The long-tail keyword has significantly less competition than the main term "coffee table." The same principle also applies to Google Adwords (PPC). Long-tail can be cheaper to bid than the super common head terms.

modern coffee table serp

Long tail keywords produce higher conversion rates

Long-tail searches are just not longer. They're more descriptive, too. 

In other words: People looking for long-tail terms appear to be a lot further down the purchasing cycle than people looking for head terms. Take a keyword like, for example, "keto diet." 

keto diet-Google-Search

Someone looking for a keto diet is simply trying to understand what it's all about. Or just how it works. That means that they're not ready to buy it. But those looking for a longer version of the term (like "keto diet supplement") are a lot closer to making a purchase. Bottom line? The traffic you get from long-tail terms seems to convert very well.  

keto diet supplement - Google Search

Increases the probability that your content will be viewed

Whenever anyone searches for a long-tail keyword, the results of modern Google searches are much more customized by place, age, sex, interests, etc. This means that two users entering the same search term can see different results. Long-tail keywords will help to tailor your website for various types of searchers since they are more descriptive.  

Want more reasons? Here's two more:

Seeking qualified searchers with long-tail keywords

With shorter keywords, ranking competition can be difficult, but visits can be fragmented, and ROI can be tiny. With the smart implementation of long-tail keywords, you might be able to bring in less traffic, going solely by numbers. 

Still, the return on your investment would be proportionally far higher: you will draw precisely the audience you're aiming for, and that audience will be far closer to the point of purchase than your less-savvy rivals. 

Less Competition equals Lower Cost

Long-tail keywords are important for a business that want their content to appear in organic Google searches. Nonetheless, they have the potential to be far more valuable to your business running paid search marketing campaigns. Because there is less competition for long-tail keywords, the cost per click is undoubtedly lower.

You can get higher ad rankings on related searches by targeting longer, more targeted long-tail keywords in your AdWords advertising without having to pay a premium per click. The key is to find a reliable, sustainable source of long-tail keywords that are relevant to you and your niche. Surprisingly, most keyword suggestion tools ignore this wealthy group, focusing solely on the lion's head and ignoring the rest of the pack.

So, what are your choices?  

How to find long-tail words

Here are nine methods to find long-tail keywords.  

Google "searches related to..."

You'll ever find that when you scroll to the bottom of Google's search results, there's a segment called "Search related to..."? These related searches are a gold mine for long-tail keyword research. 

coffee table - Google Related Search

Pro tip:

  1. Remove one of the keywords from the "Searches related to..." field and add that term to Google.
  2. Find out the results of "Searches related to..." for that keyword.
  3. Repeat the process until you've got a huge list of awesome keywords.

Google autocomplete

You've likely seen Google Autocomplete before in play. And this is definitely my favorite way to find long tails. Why? Since the suggestions, you get come directly from Google. To use Google Autocomplete to research keywords, you could just enter the keyword: OR You may type a keyword plus a letter: 

The only problem with this method is that typing "keyword a," "keyword b" and so on is a Huge pain. Luckily, long-tail keyword generators like Ubersuggest and keywordtool.io both scrap Google Autocomplete data for you. They both work a lot the same way. Only type in the seed keyword and click "search": And the tool is going to spit out hundreds of suggestions:

google auto complete

People also ask boxes

This is another simple way to find the question keywords. Next, check for a keyword in the Google search box. And keep an eye out of the "People also ask..." box in the SERPs. These are the questions people ask around the topic of the keyword you typed in. And if you click on one of the questions, you'll see the answer, plus Google will show you even more questions.  

people also ask serp

Report on Google Search Console results

Often the best keyword is the one you're already ranked with. What do I mean by that? If you're like other people, you've got a couple of pages on Google's 2nd, 3rd, or 4th list. You often find that you rank in Google for long-tail keywords that you're not even optimizing for. Even so, when you give these pages some extra SEO focus, they normally hit the first page in days or weeks.  

google search console

If you want more data, you can use SiteGuru to find out how your keywords are performing.

siteguru keyword report

Also, in the Insights>>Improvements sections, we identify any low hanging fruits that you can optimize for each pages. 

siteguru improvement reports

Google trends

Google Trends is one of my favorite keyword research tools of all time. About to launch an SEO campaign? You certainly want to know whether or not there is increasing interest in your keywords (or falling). Here's how it works: 

First, go to Google Trends and enter the keyword you want to rank in the search field: 

The tool will show you "time interest" based on the search volume and news headlines: 

In this case, the search volume for this term is very stable. But for other keywords, such as "Dalgona coffee," interest has unexpectedly picked up and has now stalled: And other terms, such as "Google Keyword Tool," have a steady downward trend:  

Quora, Boards and forums

Quora is a widely popular Q&A website. It's similar to that of Yahoo! Answers. But with Quora, people's comments are helpful. You need to make an account to use Quora. When logged in, enter a non-specific keyword in the search bar at the top of any page.

Forums are one of my favorite places to discover new keyword ideas. Take a moment to think about it: Where else would you find hundreds of people asking and answering questions about the topic on your site? After all, if anyone asks a question on a forum, you know there are other people out there looking for the same question in Google. 

To use the keyword research forums, go to the site where your target audience likes to hang. You may already know a couple of these. If not, just use the following simple search strings to find them: "keyword" + "powered by vbulletin" "keyword" + "board" "keyword" + "forum" You can also search for the keyword + discussions: Then, if you discover an active forum, check the titles of the new threads. Don't forget to look for the words and phrases that people use in the thread itself. Simple, yes?   

How to use the long tail keyword

When it comes to the use of long-tail keywords in your content, you have two alternatives:  

Create a piece of content optimized for that term.

Your first alternative to create a new blog post that's optimized for the long tail keyword you've just discovered. The downside to this strategy is that you need to pump a lot of material out of it. For example, the keyword "How to Get More YouTube Subscribers" only gets around 3k monthly searches. 

Even if my post had 100 percent clicks from people searching for that term (which is impracticable), that post would only boost my traffic by 3k visitors per month. And in fact, I'm only likely to get 500-700 clicks per month from that keyword. So, to make this method worth it, I'd have to churn out hundreds of articles optimized around long-tail terms.  

Integrate long tail keywords into your content

Your other alternative is to optimize your page with a short tail or "Medium tail" keyword. Then add long-tail keywords to your content.  

Benefits of long-tail keywords

It's going to help you rank for short-tail keywords too

Often, long-tail keywords already have short keywords that you're likely to want to rank with. This makes it easier to hit all your targets, increase your rankings for such keywords as well as your unique, tailored ones. Higher site ranking equals more organic traffic, so this is good news.  

Optimizes your blog approach

One of the best ways to start ranking on your website is to start a blog. If you feel overwhelmed about starting, you don't have to think about it because your long-tail keywords will lead you. They will give you insights into what your audience is looking for and create useful content that can answer some of their pain points using that key phrase.  

It helps you to personalize your content

Let's talk more about the long-tail keywords that guide the content you create. Long-tail keywords consist of four or five words (sometimes longer) and typically include descriptive words such as gender, nationality, or geographical location. You can use this to your benefit by producing various content that can support your organization's different categories and services. This helps you be more focused on your content plan and reap the benefits of contextual marketing.  

Get your ideas from Google Analytics

Keyword research long-tail terms are not as difficult as some of them may come directly from your web analytics service, such as Google Analytics. In tandem with the Google Search Console, you will also be able to see the results of your selected long-tail keywords, such as search volume and conversion rates, allowing you to select the right ones for your SEO strategy.  

It prepares you for tomorrow's trends

Long-tail keywords are more conversational, and this is a core component of your SEO strategy. They are at the heart of Google's new search engine algorithm, which aims to research the Natural Language Processing (NLP) and the reason behind the search. Also, voice assistants that read answers from featured snippets offer preference to responses that contain long-tail keywords. The bottom line, you need to follow long-tail keywords for the future of your blog or website.  

Final thought

Long-tail keywords are not as straightforward as many people think they are. By that, I mean, low-volume keywords are not necessarily easier to rank than high-volume keywords. They are often part of a much wider topic, and Google displays the same results for "unpopular" long-tail variations as they do for "head" keywords. The purpose of this article was to show you how Google handles various types of long-tail keywords. Paying close attention to this information will help you efficiently target various types of long-tail keywords and get a lot of traffic from search engines.