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What are Long Tail Keywords?

Long Tail Keywords.

The digital marketers dream.

The best way to explain what a long tail keywords are is by using a few examples:

Keyword: shoes

Long tail keyword: what shoes should I wear to prom with a pink dress?

Keyword: door handles

Long tail keyword: what type of door handles work best with oak doors?

Keyword: ford fiesta

Long tail keyword: what stereo system does a Ford Fiesta 2019 come with?

A real definition would be:

A long tail keyword is a phrase or question addressing a small part of a specific topic or thing, and requires a specific answer to help the user solve a specific problem.

Why are long tail keywords good?

The reason why people in SEO “like” long tail keywords are:

  • Less competition – these specific keywords are by nature usually searched for far less, which means less people see them as valuable, and so less people try and rank in Google for them, which means that it’s easier for you to rank your website for these terms.
  • Obvious user intent – with a long tail keyword, it’s normally fairly obvious what the person searching for it is trying to do / find out. This means it’s simple to create content serving the user, and gives you a better chance of ranking well for the term.

When to avoid long tail keywords?

Sometimes it’s best not to target long tail keywords with a unique page.

That’s because sometimes Google has worked out that people searching for a long phrase, are actually looking for something more specific to the main phrase, and so they rank the main phrase pages for this term.

So instead of creating a unique page for this long tail keyword, you would be best to include it in the main page for that topic.

An example:

Keyword topic: Leather sofas

Long tail keyword: Premium quality leather sofas with UK delivery

If you Google the long tail keyword, you will notice that there aren’t pages dedicated to the entire phrase ranking on page 1, they are all pages targeting the main topic – Leather sofas.

So instead of a new page, we would simply target the words “premium”, “quality” and “UK delivery” on our main Leather sofas page, in order to rank for this phrase.

If you don’t choose to do this, then you can run into what’s called “keyword cannibalisation”, which I will cover in another post.

How to find long tail keywords?

To find the best long tail keywords, you can use usual keyword research tools such as Ahrefs Keyword Explorer.

Here you enter your target term, and you can look into the “Questions” section to find lower search volume phrases to target.

You can also look down the main lists of keywords, and look for lower volume longer phrase terms with a lower difficulty score, as these are good signs it may be a good one to target.

Once you have your potential list, make sure to do the test I mention above about Googling the term to ensure unique pages are coming up, and then decide.

Final Thoughts

you should now successfully know what a long tail keyword is and how to find them for your own website.

If you’re struggling or want some help with SEO services, then give us a quick email at [email protected]

Good luck!

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