How A Few Long-Tail Keywords Can Go A Long Way

Purple teapot. Purple teapots. Purple Teapots Arbroath. Purple Teapots in Arbroath. Depending on how much you like purple teapots and the town of Arbroath, head term keywords can be a bit dull. Yes, these broad terms are crucially important to your website’s performance in the search engine rankings, but they’re not the be-all and end-all. We’re here to show you how a few long-tail keywords can go a long way…

What are long-tail keywords?

Long-tail keywords are the three or more word phrases that online browsers use to search for specific products or services or answers to their questions. They receive less search volume than head term keywords but they usually have a higher conversion value as they’re much more specific.

Low Competition + High Conversion Rates = Happy Online Marketers

Long-tail keywords deliver a big boost for small budgets

If you’re a small player operating in a highly competitive market, let’s say you’re a car insurance broker, you’re going to struggle to compete with the comparison sites and the insurers for head term keywords like ‘car insurance’ and ‘cheap car insurance’. You simply won’t have the budget.

However, you might be able to secure some good rankings for long-tail keywords such as ‘car insurance brokers near me’, ‘electric car insurance quotes’ and ‘category c car insurance quotes’. As these keywords are more specific, the competition will be far less, which will give little old you a chance to shine.

Browsers who use long-tail keywords also tend to be further along the buyer’s journey. They’ve already done much of their research and have a better idea of what they want to buy. That can make long-tail keywords a real money-spinner for your business.

How to find long-tail keywords for your website

There are lots of different resources out there that you can use to find lead-driving long-tail keywords that will attract plenty of highly-targeted traffic.

1. Google Suggest

The simplest way to mine for all that long-tail gold is simply to type your primary keyword into the Google search box and see what Google’s autocomplete feature suggests. For example:

Suggestions for long-tail keywords from Google

Hopefully ‘how to run away’ and ‘how to run away from home’ are not the sort of questions you’re trying to answer. However, if you sell running equipment, ‘how to run faster’ and ‘how to run properly’ are two long-tail keywords people are searching for that could bring more traffic to your site.

2. Google’s related searches

Another very simple technique is to type your primary keyword into the Google search box and press enter. At the bottom of the search engine results page, they’ll be a section entitled ‘Searches related to (your keyword)’, as you can see below.

Long-tail keyword suggestions from Google's related searches section

This will usually provide a few more long-tail variations than Google Suggest and even include an element of personalisation based on your location.

3. Keyword research tools

There are also plenty of free keyword research tools out there that you can use to unearth some long-tail gems. The Google Keyword Planner tool is probably the best place to start, but WordStream, Keyword Tool and Ubersuggest are all good options.

4. Google Analytics

If you produce new blog content regularly, you’ll probably already have some long-tail search queries that are driving traffic to your site without you knowing. These queries are likely to be topics that are relevant to your website but that are perhaps not targeted by a single page or post on your site. If that’s the case, it would be a great idea to write one.

To find the long-tail keywords that are bringing traffic to your site, take the following path in Google Analytics (Traffic Sources – Sources – Search – Organic). That will give you ideas for long-tail keywords that you can turn into content and help you identify gaps that your existing content does not cover.

How do I use long-tail keywords in my content?

Now you have a few long-tail keyword ideas, you can start creating SEO content that includes those terms. Long-tail keywords tend to work best as the title or main topic for a blog post. However, simply including your long-tail keyword in the content will not generate traffic unless you understand:

  • Who your readers are
  • What their intent is (i.e. to make a purchase, find out more information, have their questions answered, etc.)

You can then create content that’s aimed specifically at those readers. Importantly, you should not try to target the same long-tail keyword with multiple blogs. Instead, write several blog posts that contain all kinds of long-tail variants, all of which are related to the products or services you sell.

You should also link from your blog posts that contain your long-tail keywords to your main category pages. That creates a clear pathway for your visitors, shows Google what your site structure looks like and lets it know which pages on your website are the most important.

Don’t expect miracles right away

As with every aspect of organic SEO, creating content that features your long-tail keywords and performs well in the search engine results pages will take time. However, given the cost and the time it can take to compete for your head terms in a competitive industry and the higher conversion rates associated with long-tail keywords, it’s well worth the effort.

Need a little help?

At To Your Heart’s Content, we offer a range of top-notch SEO copywriting services, including quality on-site blog posts that help businesses flourish online. Get in touch to find out how we can help.