Learn Internet Marketing > Weekly Tips > SSWT 11/13/07

Long Tail Keywords

A Simple Explanation of Long Tail Keyword Targeting

I understand that you may be confused and/or frustrated with SEO, or with trying to get good search engine rankings. What I have for you in this issue is a very simple explanation of Long Tail Keywords - a method of keyword targeting that will bring in TONS Of traffic.

And don't worry - because this is super easy and you will be really impressed with how well it works ;)

This is not just for direct SEO, but what also what I like to refer to as "Indirect SEO": one of my own personal strategies for getting visitors and buyers to my websites.

Long Tail Keywords: The Definition

Long Tail keywords are 3 to 4-word keyword phrases which are very, very specific to whatever you are promoting or selling.

You'll find a great explanation at WordTracker's website too:

To give you an example, you might target (or optimize for) the phrase: "quick easy chicken recipes" instead of just "chicken recipes".

3 Reasons To Use Long Tail Keywords

There are 3 good reasons that you should be using Long Tail Keywords (and next I'll show you how to use them)...

1. They are (much!) easier to rank for
2. They attract more targeted visitors
3. They convert (much!) better

You might be tempted to optimize your recipe site for the keyword "recipe" because it gets over 14,000 searches a day. You might be tempted to optimize your site for the phrase "chicken recipes" because it gets almost 3,000 searches/day. And then there's "quick easy chicken recipes" that only gets 77 searches a day. So why would I recommend that phrase??

Note: you can find the approximate number of searches per day across the major search engines for any given keyword or phrase by using WordTracker's free tool:


Now, here's the logic:

The Long-Tail phrase "quick easy chicken recipes" actually contains 5 different keywords/phrases in one! You have:

recipes 14,737
chicken 5,574
chicken recipes 2,934
easy chicken recipes 423
quick easy chicken recipes 77

Obviously if you offer quick & easy recipes for preparing chicken, then the 4-word phrase would bring in a highly targeted visitor to your site. And the more targeted the visitor... the higher the conversion rate.

The #1 result for that 4-word phrase has less than 70 inbound links from other websites. If you know anything about Search Engine Optimization, you know that means its pretty easy to rank in the top 10 for that one :)

(If you dont, here is a free tutorial)

How To Use Long Tail Keywords

If you use the free WordTracker tool to look at keyword phrases and keyword combinations, you'll see hundreds of different micro-topics or content ideas jumping out at you. These Long Tail Keyword Phrases are great for getting ideas for new content pages, new blog posts & new articles.

The more pages you have on the web, the more visitors you can get to your site(s). I like to call this "going wide". Let me explain...

I've already mentioned that its generally very easy to rank for these longer keyword phrases (at least 3-4 words). You can easily get far more traffic with a number of these types of phrases on each of your web pages, than you can trying to work your way into good rankings for a shorter, more competitive keyword phrase (like "recipes").

If you have 20 pages that are each optimized for a phrase that gets 100 searches a day, that's a total of 2,000/day combined. If you create 40 pages each with their own Long Tail phrases, that's exposure to 4,000 searches/day, etc.

All of a sudden your pages are showing up in the top 3 search results all over the place - for a wide variety of related keyword phrases! All the while your competitor is still pulling their hair out trying to get in the top 10 for that one keyword phrase (ha!).

Note: If you are not sure how to optimize your web pages for specific keyword phrases, check out my simple tutorial for Where to use keywords.

Where To Use Long Tail Keywords

You can use this easy (free) Keyword Research method to find topic ideas and locate specific keyword phrases, and then use them in these 4 places (among others):

- Blog post titles
- Web pages
- Articles
- Forum Posts

This is where "Indirect SEO" comes in. Forum posts usually get indexed in the major search engines fairly quick. So do articles that you submit to established article directories.

They will rank high in the search engines for Long Tail phrases - usually in a matter of 1-2 days. If your own site is not yet ranking well for certain keywords, this is a great way to get "indirect rankings".

If you use a compelling signature (or byline) and a strong call-to-action... you can funnel that search engine traffic straight into your own site

Try this method out for yourself. You will be surprised at how easy it is, and how soon you begin seeing targeted traffic flowing into YOUR websites!

Lynn Terry

p.s. If you have ANY questions about Search Engine Optimization or Long Tail Keyword targeting, post them in the SEO category at our discussion forum: www.SelfStartersWeeklyTips.com/forum/