If you’re familiar with any element of search engine optimization, it’s likely keywords. The general concept in SEO services is that the specific words and phrases present on a page determines where that page ranks in response to a search. In the past, this led to keyword stuffing, or attempts to pad keyword ratios and rank higher. However, times are changing, and such generic strategies no longer fool advanced algorithms. Instead, it’s time to shift our attention to long-tail keywords.
What is a Long-Tail Keyword?
A long-tail keyword is a narrower, more specific keyword phrase that is far more likely to convert than broader keywords. A long-tail keyword might include words like “best” or “near me” along with specifiers, brand names, or adjectives. These keywords are what people type in when they’re ready to buy, making them extremely valuable. If you can identify and capture the right long-tail keywords, you not only increase organic search traffic, but you generate traffic from eager, responsive customers.
Why Long-Tail is Key to Success
Of course, there is value in targeting long-tail keywords solely for their conversion potential, but there are other reasons to focus your optimization strategy around long-tail keywords.
- There’s less competition: Because the phrases are more specific, there is less competition, making it easier to achieve higher page rankings.
- They mimic how people talk: When buyers type an inquiry (or ask their voice assistant to do it for them), they use certain patterns of language. Long-tail keywords more closely resemble these linguistic characteristics, capturing user intent better than more generic phrases. This ultimately drives organic traffic from customers who are ready to convert.
- Google likes them: Since Google’s 2017 Hummingbird update, the page-ranking algorithms have prioritized pages with more specific context. Long-tail keywords are the best way to appeal to this preference.
And the best part is that long-tail keywords don’t replace single-keyword ranking. Instead, when incorporated properly, long-tail keywords can only positively impact page ranking and conversion rates. At Social SEO, we take advantage of this by drilling down to the most impactful long-tail queries and optimizing our client’s pages accordingly. To learn more about this and other advanced strategies, get in touch with an SEO services consultant today.