Long-tail keywords are specific, low-volume queries that comprise a large percentage of overall searches.
They are more detailed than other keywords, leading to a higher likelihood of action.
Long-Tail Keyword Examples
Here are examples of very broad that aren’t long-tail keywords:
- Coffee filters
- Iced coffee
- Marketing Agency
- Marketing software
It’s important to note that short and vague terms are not specific, while long-tail words are more descriptive and lengthier.
The non-long-tail terms mentioned above have high search volumes, as Semrush’s Keyword Overview tool reported, which means they’re unsuitable for long-tail keywords.
To provide further clarity, here are some examples of targeted keywords that are considered long-tail keywords:
- Homemade coffee filters
- Can you warm up iced coffee
- Marketing agency for SaaS
- Enterprise marketing software
These are the telltale signs of long-tail keywords:
They are long, specific, and have relatively low search volumes, as shown in the report below.
Why Are Long-Tail Keywords Important?
Easier to Rank
Head terms, which are commonly used phrases, are usually highly competitive.
It may take several years to rank for that particular keyword using SEO, and there’s no guarantee that you’ll be able to rank at all.
Long-tail keywords are specific and targeted. Someone searching for “SEO software for small business” will likely be ready to purchase, while someone searching for “SEO” will probably still do preliminary research.
So, even if you rank for this term, it’s likely to bring a few conversions.
Using long-tail keywords can help you maximize your budget effectively if you’re advertising on Google Ads.
This is because high-volume keywords generally come with a high cost per click (CPC) but do not necessarily lead to higher conversion rates.
In contrast, low-volume long-tail keywords are precise and can result in higher conversion rates while also having a lower CPC.
This is a win-win situation. However, the main disadvantage of focusing on long-tail keywords is that you need several of them to achieve the same amount of traffic that a single head term could generate.
Easy to Target
Long-tail keywords are highly targeted phrases that are more specific and less generic, which makes them relatively easier to rank for on your website when compared to broad keywords.
For instance, if you target a long-tail keyword such as “how to filter cold brew coffee,” you’ll find that the top-ranking pages for this keyword are all blog posts that teach the reader how to filter cold brew coffee.
Therefore, you should also create a blog post that teaches readers how to filter cold brew coffee to target this particular keyword.
On the contrary, non-long-tail keywords like “coffee grinder” are comprehensive and have both ecommerce category pages and informative blog posts ranking at the top.
In such cases, it needs to be clarified what type of content you should create to target this keyword.
You might have to decide whether to start a blog post about the best coffee grinders or an eCommerce category page that shows all the coffee grinders you sell based on the search results.
Most searches on Google are done using long-tail keywords.
People use descriptive phrases that reflect their interests or needs when searching for information or products online.
For example, instead of typing, “When searching for shoes, individuals may look for specific features such as comfort for women with flat feet or ankle support for basketball players.
Countless variations of long-tail searches reflect particular requirements.
Therefore, you can always have many long-tail keyword ideas to concentrate on with your website.
How to Identify Long-Tail Keywords
Use the Keyword Magic Tool
The Keyword Magic Tool by Semrush is excellent for long-tail keyword research.
It can generate thousands of keywords within seconds.
Enter a seed keyword related to your business to generate more keyword ideas and find long-tail keywords.
Perform Keyword Gap Analysis
By conducting a keyword gap analysis, you can identify long-tail keywords your competitors rank for, but you need to.
These long-tail SEO keywords your competitors are targeting will likely be relevant to your business.
Therefore, it makes sense to target those keywords with your website.
You can use Semrush’s Keyword Gap tool to uncover your competitors’ long-tail keywords.
To use the tool, add your domain and up to four competitors, and then click “Compare.” The device will display the keywords your competitors rank for, position, and search volume.
Applying filters to find specific long-tail keywords is vital when conducting keyword research.
After applying some filters, you can see long-tail keywords you can target with your website. You can use the following filters to narrow down your search:
– Search Volume: This filter will help you find keywords with lower search volume.
– KD: This filter will help you find keywords with low keyword difficulty.
– Position: This filter will help you find keywords where your competitors rank within the first 20 positions.
Try Google Search Features
When you begin typing in Google’s search box, the autocomplete feature shows a drop-down list of related terms people commonly search for.
Additionally, you can add a letter after your search term to view more suggestions.
For instance, if you’re searching for long-tail keywords related to content marketing, you can type “best content marketing p” in the search box to get a list of suggestions.
Analyzing your keywords in Semrush’s Keyword Overview tool is essential to determine whether they’re long-tail.
Google provides eight related keywords at the bottom of the first search page, but most may be short-tail.
Find long-tail keywords using Google’s “People Also Ask” box and confirm them in Semrush’s Keyword Overview tool.
Use Semrush Topic Research Tool
The Topic Research tool is a valuable resource to help you discover topics related to a keyword you enter.
The device presents these topics in a card-style format and displays questions about your issue.
You can find excellent ideas for long-tail keywords perfect for blog content by exploring the questions.
To determine which to use, enter each question keyword into the Keyword Overview tool and check the “Search Volume” and “Keyword Difficulty” metrics.
This will help you make the final decision on which keywords to use.
Leverage Forum Sites
Message boards and forums, like Quora, can provide you with excellent long-tail keyword ideas.
You can use Semrush’s Organic Research tool to find relevant keywords for your business.
Enter the domain of the message board or forum into the device and click on “Search.”
Next, navigate to the “Positions” tab, which will show you all the keywords the domain ranks for in Google.
However, not all of these keywords may be relevant to your business.
To filter the report and see only the keywords that represent your niche, you can go to “Advanced filters,” type in a related word (such as “finance” if you’re in the finance industry), and then click on “Apply.”
The filtered report will give you a more focused list of keywords, including long-tail variations like “Is international finance hard?” and “Is finance a STEM major?”
Try Google Ads Keyword Planner
Regarding PPC campaigns, Google Keyword Planner is a great tool that can also be used as a source of keyword ideas.
To access it, log in to your Google Ads account and go to the Keyword Planner section.
You will find two options: “Discover new keywords” and “Get search volume and forecasts.”
Choose “Discover new keywords” and enter a broad “seed keyword” into the field.
Google will generate a list of related terms along with their search volumes.
To further analyze the keywords, use the Semrush Keyword Overview tool.
The tool will provide more data to help you decide whether to target the keywords, especially the ones with lower search volumes.
This will help you determine if long-tail keywords are worth your investment.
Learning how to identify long-tail keywords is only half the battle.
Once you have found your keywords, you must use them correctly on your page.
Check out this guide to on-page SEO to learn what you need to know about using keywords correctly.
But as a quick primer, here are a few on-page SEO tips that apply to long-tail keywords:
Consider the User’s Search Intent
More than adding a keyword to your website is required for good Google ranking.
Your content should also cater to the user’s search intent.
In other words, your website should provide users with what they are looking for.
For example, if someone is searching for “weight loss tips,” you could write a blog post listing tips that could help.
Your website’s long-tail keywords can fall into one of four search intent categories:
Informational intent (where users seek information), navigational intent (where users look for a specific website or page), commercial intent (where users research before making a purchase decision), and transactional intent (where users look to make a purchase).
By creating content that gives your reader precisely what they’re looking for, you can satisfy their search intent.
Place Your Keywords Strategically
To improve your website’s search engine ranking, it is essential to incorporate your long-tail keyword into your page’s title, header tags, and first paragraph.
However, long-tail keywords can often be lengthy and challenging to use naturally in a sentence.
You may have to be creative and modify your keyword in such cases.
But remember not to force your keyword on the page, as readability and usability are always the top priority.
Create Topic Clusters
Organizing your content into topic clusters optimizes your pages for search engines and humans.
First, optimize your pages using long-tail keywords, and then create topic clusters by linking pages that target long-tail keywords to those that target head terms (pillar pages).
It is crucial to ensure that all the pages are thematically related.
Organizing your content into topic clusters can help users quickly and easily find the necessary information.
Additionally, it can result in higher search engine rankings, increased user engagement, and longer time spent on your site.
Keyword research is the foundation of any successful SEO campaign.
Optimizing for long-tail keywords is preferable to achieve better results for new sites or sites with limited authority.
Those keywords are too competitive if you need help ranking your target terms.
In that case, shifting your focus toward long-tail keywords is recommended.
These keywords are more specific and less competitive, which makes it easier to rank higher on the search engine results page (SERP).