We can’t overstate the importance of using long-tail keywords for building your brand today and into the future. How people perform internet searches is changing at an escalating rate. Understanding why long-tail keywords have become so important and learning how to use long-tail keywords effectively presents a unique opportunity for your business to succeed. We’ll explain how.
What are Long-Tail Keywords?
The quick and dirty answer is that long-tail keywords are keywords or keyword phrases that are more than 3 words long. Google signaled in May 2016 that they recognized the significance of long-tail keywords when they increased the character limit for titles and descriptions in search engine result pages (SERPs).
If you really dive into keyword research, you’ll discover that your organic (unpaid) search traffic is already being powered by long-tail keywords, whether you intended to do so or not. What you may not realize is that 70% of all internet searches use long-tail keywords.
The key is to use long-tails strategically to reap maximum benefits instead of settling for minimal benefits without a long-tail keyword SEO strategy.
How Voice is Impacting the Future of Search
Devices that respond to the human voice (voice control device, voice recognition device) are everywhere. They include alarm clocks, watches, voice-activated phones and lights, smart TVs and many more.
These powerful devices are changing how we search. Instead of typing in a search box, you have a conversation with the device. Intelligent personal assistants (PA) such as Amazon’s Echo, Google Assistant, Siri, Cortana and a host of others do anything you’d type in a browser and much more. People are rapidly becoming accustomed to searching by voice instead of typing. They love the ease of it and are doing it more and more. Maybe you’ve already become an adopter of this new way of doing things.
Voice Search Queries vs. Typed Search Queries
When people type a search query, they tend to type as few words as possible, as in “transmission repair.” If they’re talking to Siri or another PA, they might say, “Find the closest transmission repair shop.”
“Shoes” or “Men’s Shoes” are short-tail keywords that could be typed for any number of reasons, but don’t necessarily indicate an immediate interest in buying a pair of shoes.
Differently, telling Alexa to “Find men’s black running shoes in size 12” indicates interest in a specific type of shoe. If you sell running shoes, this is the sort of traffic you’d like more of. It shows that the customer is a serious prospect.
Constructing an Effective SEO Strategy With Long-Tail Keywords
Keyword research has become more important than ever. You could probably think of countless long-tail keywords for your product or service, but which ones should you focus on? Which really good ones didn’t you think of? Which long-tail keywords should you base your SEO strategy on?
One point to remember is that most searches are for one of three reasons:
- To take an action of some kind, such as buy a product
- To learn something
- To go somewhere
Long-Tail Keywords are Great for Business
Below are a few of the ways long-tail keywords can help grow your business.
- Conversions: Long-tail keywords convert 2.5 times more than shorter keywords.
- More relevant search results: More targeted leads.
- Become an authoritative expert in your niche: Researching long-tail keywords will give you ideas for blogs and articles. Consider long-tails beginning with “How to fill-in-the-blank” for starters.
- Strategic marketing plan: Base content on carefully selected long-tails.
- Improve your Google ranking: There’s less competition so it’s a little easier. In the long run, this strategy will also help you achieve better rankings with traditional short-tail keywords.
- Rich answers: If your well-optimized content, including great long-tail keywords, is considered the most relevant by Google, it could be used as a featured snippet (the information in the box at the top of the results page) with your link underneath. That can bring you a lot of targeted traffic.