So we’ve already talked about the important role that keyword optimization plays when it comes to getting a higher ranking on the search engine results pages (SERPs). You already know then that using the correct keywords and phrases is more important than calculating keyword density. Here at LeapFroggr, we don’t really think about keyword density at all as we like to keep things natural.
You also know that with keywords, there’s such a thing as overdoing it: keyword stuffing is something that should be avoided, lest you want search engines to think that you’re a spammer. If you’ve read our article on keywords, then you’re aware that there are strategic places where you can insert your keywords, as well as how you can organize your keywords per page.
More importantly, you were taught that while using keywords gives you an edge, you should still focus on optimizing your website with high-quality content relevant to people. In other words, if you are great with keyword optimization but your website doesn’t have the stuff that people want and need, you will have a hard time engaging people.
To increase your sales, you should be able to create the proper keywords and phrases that can fit naturally on your page and on your actual content. This is one of the best practices of search engine optimization.
What Are Long-Tail Keywords?
Long-tail keywords are keyword phrases that are long and specific. For example, if you were a customer, and if you were looking to buy a black Halloween costume for your son, what would you type in the search engine? Would you type “Halloween costume” or “children’s costume” or “black costume”? Probably, but these words won’t give you exact matches that would lead them to the page where you can find what it is you need.
Using the search engines to look for these keywords will definitely give you results: in fact, you would probably get millions of results. However, these results won’t give you the specific results that you want. Instead, you will need to type in the complete phrase, which could be “black Halloween costume for boys” to narrow down the results from a million to just thousands.
I’m pretty sure that if you type that long keyword phrase, you will be able to find what you’re looking for in an instant. More so if you add your location or the actual character of the Halloween costume that your son likes, maybe Dracula or Frankenstein’s monster. Long-tail keyword phrases could be are about 2-3+ words or longer and you probably already know as you have used them before when searching online.
As you can see, specificity is more important and convenient for the customer, and using long-tail keywords is what will ultimately get him to the page where he needs to be. As a businessperson, it’s vital that you know how your customers think and act, so you can create the keywords that they are most likely to use.
How Long-Tail Keywords Work
You’ve already gotten an idea of how long-tail keywords are more convenient and useful for customers, but as a businessperson, why is it important for you to use long-tail keywords? Let me explain by showing you this simple diagram:
Let’s take our example from before, which is “black Halloween costume for boys”.
If your online business is selling costumes, then your keywords shouldn’t be at least without the word “costume” in it. However, “costume” is very general, and according to the image above, using that generic word will give you more results. This means more competition and a low probability of conversion.
Why? It’s because there’s not much information to go with “costume”. The generic word “costume” is not an indication that the searcher is looking to buy costumes. And even if that person is looking to buy costumes online, using the one-word keyword won’t be enough to get your website on the front page of the SERPs, especially when you have big businesses that are known for selling these types of clothing.
The same is true with “Halloween”. While the phrase is more specific than “costume”, it’s still too general. You still have too much competition to deal with, and you’re still not sure about the intent of the searcher.
But when you search for something as specific as “black Halloween costume for boys”, the results will also be more specific. You suddenly get a higher chance of landing at the forefront of the SERPs. You will have lesser competition, and people are more likely to be directed to your website. This will lead to a higher chance of conversion, and that’s good news for your business.
When you optimize for long-tail keywords to your SEO campaign, whether it’s for your E-Commerce website or your blog, your ranking among organic traffic on the SERPs will increase, provided of course, that your content is relevant to the keywords and the intent of the searcher.
Using Long-Tail Keywords to Your Advantage
Now that you know the benefits that you can get by using long-tail keywords, especially in terms of your sales, you need to focus your attention on how you can create and use these long-tail keywords to get your desired results.
Let’s start with finding the right long-tail keywords.
Finding the Right Keyword Phrases
If you’ve already practiced keyword optimization, then I encourage you to consider the keywords that you’re currently using. If you’re new to using keywords, then you are encouraged to come up with the keywords that you think are helpful for both your business and your target customers.
Once you have gotten your keyword ideas, you need to ask yourself if you can spin these keywords into something more specific, and also look for chances where you can add more keywords to phrases to make them longer.
During your keyword research, one thing you shouldn’t forget is that your keyword phrases, no matter how long, should always make sense. And you also have to consider how you’re going to put these phrases into your landing pages. These keywords should fit in naturally, meaning that the style and grammar of the content should not be compromised.
Also, it’s important that you choose the best keywords and phrases from your list. It doesn’t make sense to use all of the keywords you’ve come up with in one page. That’s already stuffing. Google is actually smart enough today to see different phrases and understand that they have the same context.
Tools to Help You Find Your Keywords
This is where Google’s Keyword Planner will come in handy. These tools will keep track of the performance of your keywords and show you if these keywords are effective in terms of increasing the visibility of your website.
When doing keyword research, it’s fine to use tools that will help give you ideas of what keywords work. Google’s Keyword Planner is a great tool that will not only provide you with keyword ideas, but will also give you an estimate report on how these keywords will fare.
Google’s Webmaster Tools can also help identify keyword phrases you normally wouldn’t know that your site is ranking for.
Suggester is another tool that will show you the list of keywords and phrases that Google suggests when you’re typing on the search engine. Not many people are aware that the phrases that appear on Google’s suggest and autocomplete features are the top keywords that people search for.
Where to Put Your Keyword Phrases
Once you’ve chosen your long-tail keywords, it’s now time for you to incorporate these phrases into your landing pages. Landing pages are the pages where people will be directed when they click on the link or your ad that contains the keywords. In this case, it’s your website, e-commerce product page or your blog.
Use it in your post title, your content body, your meta title, meta description, your ALT tag for the image, even the actual filename of the image. Of course, you need to keep it natural. You do not have to make it look like you forced a grammatically wrong phrase into your title and body. It wouldn’t read right and it will only affect your reader’s experience on your website. (Ask us on Facebook, Google+ or Twitter or our community, we can explain it further)
You should always keep in mind the user’s comfort and experience to prevent overdoing it. And yes, you really can overdo it.
Remember that the design is not the reason why people go to your site or landing page; rather, it’s because the page contains the content they’re looking for.
As your content is now optimized for long tail keywords, your blog post can potentially be more visible on the SERPs compared to your other pages. You can actually build the initial backlinks and see your site start ranking faster than your unoptimized pages. You might even find out that just a few shares on social sites might get your new post ranking.
Long-Tail Keywords to Increase Conversion
Assuming you have your goals properly set up in Google Analytics, then we should never forget the other benefit of utilizing long tails. Your conversion will skyrocket as you are now giving the visitor exactly what they are looking for.
You can actually use PPC ads to further profit from the keyword or the other way around as you can discover long-tail keywords that convert really well and implement those to your SEO campaigns.
From here on out, you can continuously tweak your page to further improve conversions. Often, the most subtle of changes can make the biggest impacts.
- It’s very important that your content will satisfy the needs and wants of the searcher. Tweak your content to get better results.
- Playing with the location of your content/product descriptions has been studied over and over again as they do affect buyer tendencies.
- Another is by putting a proper call-to-action button on your landing page. It may seem like a small deal, but the buttons will help follow-up on these people and gently urge them to take the next step… which is, of course, conversion.
True, conversion doesn’t necessarily mean buying your products, but it does mean increasing sales in one way or another. The definition of conversion depends on the goal of the company owner.
Conversion could mean increasing followers on other websites, specifically social media pages, which would also increase the chance of transactions. It could also mean subscribing to a newsletter or email updates. We will talk about Conversion Rate Optimization (CRO) in a future article so be sure to subscribe to our RSS feed.
Things to Remember
As a final note, when using long-tail keywords, you shouldn’t just focus on the traffic that you can expect to get by just using these phrases, nor concentrate on the rankings that search engines will give to your website.
Instead, you should balance it with how these long-tail keywords will help increase your conversion rates.
You should also know that there’s no limit to how many long-tail keywords you can come up with. The important thing is that you do your keyword research diligently and find the right keywords that will complement your content.