Long Tail Keywords
Long Tail Keywords are the keywords that others often ignore, they’re the three to five word keywords that wont get you ten thousand hits a month, but are still not to be dismissed, long term keywords make up a huge amount of traffic out there and by cleverly targeting your articles you can take advantage of all the longer searches out there on the internet.
Long tail keywords are called such because of the graph they create alongside the standard, short tail keywords, so let’s say that a search for “David Beckham” gets ten thousand searches a month, “David Beckham’s football boots” might get 100 searches. This is one of many long tail keywords to the short tail “David Beckham”. All of these terms added up create a graph looking a little bit like this…
So how does the art of long and short tail keywords come into play regarding your blog or website? Well, it could be in numerous ways, but in my experience, long tail keywords are…well…key. I’ll give you an example. One of my websites is related to sports, football (soccer if you’re in the US), to be precise. Big traffic-drivers to my site are my ‘player profiles’ and ‘former player profiles’ sections, but, as I’m sure you can imagine, they’re quite competitive areas. Football is big here in the UK, and if I’m going to write a player profile for David Beckham, I’m going to be competing with every other site that has ever mentioned the famous midfielder. Tough break. This makes the ‘long tail’ keywords such as “David Beckham’s Football Boots” all the more important. Of course, my long term goal is to get to number one for my ideal search term, but there’s no harm in targeting some of the less popular keywords too. Often, I get traffic to my site due to people searching for a player’s name followed by a year, usually because in my article about the player I have mentioned a year in which something has happened. It doesn’t have to be difficult, just make sure you match some of the longer search terms, dont just aim all of your efforts at your ideal term.
So, how can I make the most of long term keywords?
- Content is king. Yes, it is that old adage again, the mantra of bloggers and website owners everywhere, but content really is king. Writing loads of informative, well-researched content about a subject gives you much more of a chance of Google ranking you for a long term keyword, and this will inevitably lead to clicks. Super.
- Meta Tags. Think about your meta description and keyword tags, if you find a long-tail keyword you think will work for your article, include it, this will increase your chances of number one spot too.
- Backlinks and other SEO practices. As with every article, SEO practices are needed if you’re going to rank well. Try using your long tail keyword as the anchor text in any backlinks you are building.
Trust me when I say that long tail is just as, if not more important than short tail. Recently, Pat Flynn from Smart Passive Income blogged about how he lost his number one ranking for his main keyword, but because long tail keywords made up 86% of his traffic, he didn’t really suffer. As with advertising income on your site, you can’t rely on one source of it, and the same applies for organic traffic, spread your keyword net wide and reap the rewards.