In this article, you will learn everything you need to know about long-tail keywords, 8 unique techniques on how you can find them, and five best practices for long-tail keywords. Keep reading!
Long-tail keywords are longer and more specific keywords or keyphrases of a head term keyword. And because long-tail keywords are more specific, they often get less traffic. However, they get a higher quality of traffic, which results in better conversion rates and more sales than head term keywords.
To explain it better, let’s first discuss the three different types of keywords.
As you can see, keywords are generally divided into 3 different categories:
There are many reasons why you should be targeting long-tail keywords, and I will not tell you every single one of them. However, let me tell you the most important reasons why I think long-tail keywords should be part of your overall keyword research strategy.
The main reason why you should focus on long-tail keywords above all is that they help you to establish topical relevance for your website. Based on HubSpot’s concept of Topic Clusters, you should be focusing on finding topics that are very close to your business and then creating as much content around the topic to establish topical relevance and own the topic in the search.
Owning a topic means your website appears for most of the related keywords around your targeted topic in the top positions in the SERPs. So, creating topical relevance will help you to send a strong signal to Google that you are a subject matter expert within your targeted topics and your niche, which ultimately will help you to build your Google E-A-T score and improve your ranking for the overall topic and subtopics.
For example, let’s say you are a marketing agency, and one of your closely related topics is “content marketing” because you are providing content marketing services. Now, based on HubSpot’s concept, you must create as much content around the topic “Content Marketing” to be able to own this topic in the search. The topic “Content Marketing” is your body keyword, “content” , which is the keyword with very broad meaning, and the long-tail keyword could be “content marketing plan”.
The next and one of the most exciting parts of targeting long-tail keywords is that it improves your conversion rates. With studies and numerous claims published, long-tail keywords supposedly improve organic conversion rates. And while I couldn’t find any current and not outdated information to prove this point, I know from my own experience that long-tail keywords, in fact, do convert much better than body or head keywords.
So, why do long-tail keywords convert better? The reason is simple, long-tail keywords are more specific and the searcher who is typing the keyword has a much clearer idea of what he wants. Just let’s take the keyword “content marketing”. This could mean many different things to a person who searches for this keyword. They could be searching for what is it, why you need it, how to use it, tips or tricks, and more. The intent is unclear and most likely searcher is not close to making a purchase decision or even in the consideration stage. However, keywords like “content marketing agency” are more specific and it has much clearer intent, the user is searching for an agency to manage his content strategy and he is much closer to make a purchasing decision. Therefore, long-tail keywords can be the most profitable keywords out there. And as I said from my experience, most of the b2b sales leads or sales my clients generate are 80% from a few long-tail keywords that are very closely related to their products or services.
And the last reason I want to mention is that it helps you to drive more traffic to your website especially if you are starting a new website. Long-tail keywords are often less competitive than their body or head keywords. As you can see from our list of long-tail keywords from the previous example, the long-tail keywords have significantly lower “Keyword Difficulty” according to SE Ranking than the body keyword “Content Marketing”. Thus, this gives you the opportunity to drive traffic to your website without doing too much link building to increase your domain authority. However, even if you are a large site, with high domain authority, you still want to target long-tail keywords as most of the targetable keywords are actually long-tail keywords. And what I mean targetable keywords are keywords with monthly search volume higher than 10. So, you would run out of keywords ideas to target pretty quickly if you would only target head keywords and body keywords. And I am not even mentioning it is impossible to build topic relevancy for you to target head and body keywords. Therefore, most of the time you will be actually targeting long-tail keywords and they probably will drive you most of your traffic!
Now that you know why long-tail keywords are important, let me show you 8 favorite ways to find long-tail keywords you can use to find them.
Google's "Searches related to" feature can help you find long-tail keywords that are related to your target keyword. Simply search for your target keyword, scroll down to the bottom of the page and look for the "Searches related to" section. This section will give you a list of keywords that are related to your target keyword.
Another way to find long-tail keywords is to use Google Autocomplete. When you start typing a keyword into Google's search bar, you will see a list of suggested searches. These suggested searches are based on popular searches that other users have performed. By using Google Autocomplete, you can find long-tail keywords that are related to your target keyword.
Google Keyword Planner is a free tool that allows you to research keywords and find new keyword ideas. With Keyword Planner, you can enter your target keyword and get a list of related keywords, along with their search volume, competition, and other metrics.
Answer The Public is a free tool that helps you find long-tail keywords by generating a list of questions that people are asking about your target keyword. Simply enter your target keyword into the search bar, and Answer The Public will generate a list of questions that people are asking about your keyword.
Quora is a question-and-answer site that can help you find long-tail keywords by identifying the questions that people are asking about your target keyword. Simply search for your target keyword on Quora, and you will see a list of questions that people have asked about your keyword.
SEMrush is a paid tool that allows you to research keywords and find new keyword ideas. With SEMrush, you can enter your target keyword and get a list of related keywords, along with their search volume, competition, and other metrics.
Ahrefs is another paid tool that allows you to research keywords and find new keyword ideas. With Ahrefs, you can enter your target keyword and get a list of related keywords, along with their search volume, competition, and other metrics.
Analyzing your competitors' websites can help you find long-tail keywords that they are targeting. By analyzing their content and keywords, you can identify gaps in their strategy and find opportunities to target long-tail keywords that they may have overlooked.
Long-tail keywords can be a valuable addition to your SEO strategy. By targeting long-tail keywords, you can establish topical relevance, boost your conversion rates, and drive more traffic to your website. By using the techniques outlined in this article, you can find new long-tail keywords to target and improve your overall SEO performance.