Long tail SEO is basically a search engine optimization technique which targets very specific search terms. These terms usually consist of 3 or more words, and since they are general rarer than shorter terms, it’s easier to rank highly for them.
Confused? Don’t be – after the jargon we’ll show some real-world examples to show you what long tail SEO is all about!
Let’s give it another go. Long tail SEO is a lesser-known, yet highly effective technique, which aims to increase your website’s organic (free, non-paid) traffic. Most people optimize for the most popular keywords, or those they think of first. In the real world however, SEO works a bit differently – quite a few studies have shown that it’s easier to reach a favorable rank with long tail keywords, which results in more clicks, visitors and ultimately, more profit than you would get with the more searched keywords.
Every product has a market, but in some cases this means a very small group of people – these are called niche markets. Long tail strategy helps to make your website more relevant to these smaller markets.
So you should use long tail keywords on every product page you’d like to promote. Again, it’s important to use not only popular, but also more niche, long tail keywords during SEO. It’s also worth analyzing the website metrics to see how each long tail keyword performs.
Amazon.com for example, is the world’s number one e-commerce website, which profits highly from its book sales (among other things, of course). Customers usually find the product pages of Amazon’s books via long tail keywords, which the site uses in its product descriptions.
What do you type in Google’s search field, when you are looking for a marketing counselor? Do you simply type “marketing” and hit search? Ideally you’d first filter your results for you preferred language (in our case, Hungarian), but even then, what results do you get? Let’s see…
Wikipedia is on the top. Not exactly relevant when you are trying to find a marketing counselor. The second result (which talks about the definition of marketing) looks like a much better option, and so does the third one (which literally says: “The website of online marketing counselor Máté Balázs”). The rest are just articles of marketing magazines and universities.
You can get much more relevant results by using long tail keywords. If you are trying to find a general marketing counselor, then “marketing counselor” would be a much better targeted search term, or, if you’re looking for an online marketing counselor, then you need only to add that one single word to your search. Let’s have a go at “marketing tanácsadó” (which is Hungarian for “marketing counselor”):
Okay, that’s much better – the first result is highly relevant already. Naturally, you could also search for “search engine optimization company” or “content marketing”, depending on which strategy you’re interested in.
Alright, I’ll admit that these examples are a bit biased. But I’ll be the first to say that the problem with Hungary’s marketing scene today is that most marketing counselors tend to spend more time promoting themselves instead of helping their clients do the same. The country is full of self-proclaimed marketing gurus who are all talk. So let’s look at some of our clients!
Take, for example, Zichy Park Hotel. It’s in a rural location, provides excellent team building opportunities, it’s an event venue and it even has it’s own fishing lake. Obviously, optimizing it for the word “hotel” would yield no significant results. But people usually search with a specific intent – they’re smart. So what will they type?
- rural team building opportunities
- rural fishing
- rural event venue
- rural wedding with accommodation
… and so on. If you do a search for these phrases (in Hungarian) the results won’t surprise you. You could argue that people don’t generally search for these kinds of terms, so let’s have a look at some metrics:
(Note that we took over the management of our customer’s AdWords account from another company, but you can still see that the second most effective tool is undoubtedly long tail SEO.
This screenshot shows the number of room bookings and event venue quote requests, compared to the previous year’s results. How much of a profit jump would this many customers mean to YOU?
Would you like to know what marketing strategy we would recommend for your company? We have been gathering experiences since 1998, and during this period we have been working with more than 500 companies, creating successful online marketing strategies. Our marketing audit lets you know what your marketing team is doing right or wrong. According to our results, we will design a short and a long-term online marketing strategy for you, which you can implement by yourself or with our help as well. Click here and contact us now!
What makes a long tail keyword effective?
Step 1: You don’t have to come up with everything by yourself – just take a look at your competitors who are probably already using a long tail strategy. As a first step, analyze one of your competitors’ keywords. You can find these in the meta tags of their websites’ source code.
Step 2: If you have your potential long tail keywords, then you have to find out their search volume. This is important, as it lets you filter out the most relevant ones only.
Step 3: Not all popular long tail keywords can be used to create long, good quality and informative content. Some of these can be used only in very narrow, niche topics. When it comes to these particular keywords, it’s all about creativity: try creating keyword-collections that can be used with each other in several pieces of content.
Step 4: Long tail keywords are usually grammatically or syntactically incorrect. Try putting yourself in the place of a potential customer and think about what keywords you would use to search for your content. Place this version of the keyword in your copy, instead of its “correct” form.
Step 5: If you find a great long tail keyword which you’d like to use in your content but you simply can’t find a way to place it correctly in your copy, then you’ll have to resort to some trickery. Try using some sentences that contain more appropriate variations of the given long tail keyword, but leave the copy readable and don’t disturb the content’s natural flow. If someone doesn’t understand what they’re reading, then they’ll quickly leave your site!