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How to find, use, and implement long-tail keywords for SEO success?

Table of Contents

1.       Introduction

2.       What are long tail keywords?

3.       Why long tail keywords should be part of your SEO strategy?

4.       How to find long tail keywords

5.       How to measure effectiveness of the long tail keywords?

6.       How to use long tail keywords in your SEO strategy?

Long-tail keywords are keywords used in SEO that are usually longer


If your SEO efforts are simply blending in with the crowd of generic SEO terms without any results, it is time to take a different approach. If you have conducted keyword research, you must be well aware of the term “long-tail keywords”. However, it may not be crystal clear to everyone.

In this article, we have explained the meaning and significance of long-tail keywords in SEO and how they can change your SEO game for the better. Apart from that, you will also learn how to find and implement long-tail keywords in your SEO strategy.

Let’s dive in deeper to understand how you can strengthen your SEO strategy with long-tail keywords.

What are long-tail keywords?

Long-tail keywords are keywords used in SEO that are usually longer and more specific than commonly used keywords. The word long tail comes from the book The Long Tail by Chris Anderson. In this book, the author has explained that there’s a market for virtually any product, and although this market is really small in some cases, the vastness of the internet makes your niche product profitable.

In simple words, long-tail keywords contain at least 3–4 keywords or longer in some cases and are less competitive than head keywords. Some examples of long-tail keywords are as follows:

  • Bad credit card loans in Texas
  • Seattle, Washington business loans
  • How to get rid of a bad chin

In the context of SEO, long-tail keywords are more specific and less competitive than general keywords.

For instance, the keyword “women’s black leather sandals” is a long-tail keyword. Such keywords are used by people who are more committed to buying something. They are closer to making a purchase and are looking for some specific product, service, or information.

The term “long tail” also signifies the distribution of search traffic. If you look at a common search demand curve, there are a few high-volume keywords that receive a lot of traffic and then a long tail of low-volume keywords that receive less traffic.

However, the longer the keyword, the higher the engagement or chances of the user buying the product or service for which a search has been made.

Not only are there a lot of long-tail keywords, but they also tend to convert 2.5 times better than primary keywords.

From the above discussion, we can conclude the following as important characteristics of long-tail keywords:

  • The length of the keyword is the primary determinant of whether it is a long-tail keyword or not. These keywords often consist of 3–5 words or more.
  • They usually more specifically express the user’s search intent.
  • These keywords typically have a lower search volume due to their specificity, but this is not a hard and fast rule.
  • These keywords have low competition and higher conversion rates, as people who perform searches using long-tail keywords are highly likely to buy them.

Why long-tail keywords should be part of your SEO strategy?

Every marketer is striving to have an SEO strategy that makes them connect with their target audience and bring in more quality traffic.

Tapping into targeted long-tail keywords is a way to rank better by reaching the right people. Besides, there’s often less competition for long-tail keywords.

Here is how long-tail keywords benefit your SEO strategy:

Less competitive than broad keywords

Long-tail keywords are less competitive than general or broader keywords, and hence, it is easier to rank for them on search engines. Let’s understand it through an example.

If we analyze the word “coffee” in the ESL keyword research tool, we will see that tool uses the Keyword Difficulty (KD or SD) metric to report a keyword’s ranking difficulty.

We will find that the word coffee” has 11100000 search volume, but the SEO difficulty is 100 percent. It means there is fierce competition to rank your page in search engine results using coffee as a key term.

keyword research tool

However, the keyword difficulty for the long-tail keyword “best coffee in Texas” is 28%. This shows much less competition than head keywords, and it is much easier to rank for it if you put your best foot forward and use the right SEO techniques to reach the higher rankings.

Potential for better conversions

Long-tail keywords are more effective at making your content rank in organic Google searches. As long-tail keywords are more specific, they attract people who are more likely to be interested in your offerings.

Let’s understand it with an example: when people are sure to buy something, they often provide specific details, so they get most of the exact results. For instance, a person looking for shoes may not search for shoes but probably look for men’s leather shoes in Texas, so as to get specific results only.

Such searchers are also more likely to buy the products or services they are looking for. Long-tail keywords can help you get quality traffic to your website with a high probability of turning into sales.

With smart implementation of these keywords in your SEO strategy, you may attract fewer but more committed visitors interested in buying your products. When there is more qualified traffic, it will improve your conversion rate, and you are more likely to convert those visitors into customers.

Strengthen your content strategy

Long-tail keyword tools are a great way to strengthen your SEO content strategy.

Long-tail keyword tools are a great way to strengthen your SEO content strategy. When you successfully incorporate long-tail keywords into your content strategy, it will help you match the user’s intent. It allows you to better understand the needs, preferences, and problems faced by your targeted audience in relation to your products and services. It can help you discover new topics, trends, and opportunities in your niche. Besides, it will also help you create more honest, accurate, and credible content.

Rank higher for voice searches

When people use voice assistance to search for something, they tend to use more specific and long colloquial expressions to express their search request. As per the forecast by Statistics, the number of digital voice assistants will reach 8.4 billion units by 2024, a number higher than the world’s population.

Thus, one cannot ignore voice searches to rank higher in Google and other search engines. People using voice search tend to use long-tail keywords because they are most likely looking for a specific service. Hence, they can be considered high-intent users for your SEO strategy. Such users are more likely to convert if they get the right products or services or helpful content that answers all their questions.

Rank higher for voice searches in long tail keyword

Valuable for advertisers

Keywords are also valuable for advertisers running paid search marketing campaigns

These keywords are also valuable for advertisers running paid search marketing campaigns. The reason is that the cost per click of bidding on long-tail keywords is low due to less competition.

When you use longer and more specific keywords in your AdWords campaigns, you can get higher ad rankings on relevant searches without having to pay a premium for every click.The trick is to find reliable long-tail keywords that are right for you and your niche industry.

Increase content visibility on search engines

increase content visibility on search engines

When someone searches for something on Google using long-tail keywords, Google personalizes the search results based on their location, age, sex, interests, etc. It means two users searching for the same long-tail keyword will get different results. Thus, these keywords help you optimize your website for different searches by meeting their specific needs in the search results.

Rank low-authority pages

Google ranks web pages based on a few factors, such as authority, quality, and relevance.

There are some giant industry players that usually dominate rankings for high-competition keywords as they tend to have more authority. However, if you have newer pages, you may not be able to compete even with the highest-quality content. In such a case, long-tail keywords can help you become more relevant to your target audience.

As these keywords are very specific, they help to create highly relevant content that answers these search terms better than other pages. And then you stand a chance at ranking better for these low-competition keywords.

Rank for short-tail keywords

Long-tail keywords also include the short keywords for which you want to rank. In this way, you can boost your rankings for both main keywords and long-tail keywords.

Future-proof your SEO

future proof your seo

People generally use the same key phrase in Google as when they are talking to a friend. This is called natural language. Long-tail keywords are more conversational and, hence, more natural. These keywords are at the heart of Google’s latest search engine algorithm, which focuses on natural language processing (NLP) and the intent behind the search. These results are given preference by voice assistants, who read off answers from featured snippets.

How to find long tail keywords?

Finding long tail keywords is a crucial step in creating an effective SEO strategy. Here are some most prominent ways used by SEO professionals to find long tail keywords to use them in optimizing web pages.

How to use Google for finding long tail keywords?

The long tail keywords you use can be used as the main title of the blog, article, video or info graphics or any other content.

Google auto suggestion

Auto complete Google suggestions are easiest way to find long tail keyword variations.  Just start typing broad keywords into the Google search box as you always do for searching anything and it will suggest a range of variations. You can take recommendations relevant to your topic or industry as long tail keywords.

However, you will be required to use another keyword research tool (such as ESL Ranks Pro) to get details like keyword difficulty, number of searches, competition etc.

Auto complete Google suggestions are easiest way to find long tail keyword variations

Use Google’s people also ask section.

Just like auto-Google suggestions, “People also ask” is a free and easy-to-use technique to find long-tail keywords.

In the People also ask section, Google places the most frequently asked questions related to the user’s search query along with answers from the most relevant pages.

Simply write a question in a Google search query related to your product or niche industry, and Google will add in a couple more questions at the bottom of the widget.

People also ask" is a free and easy-to-use technique to find long-tail keywords.

Use Google’s related searches

Google Related Search is an area that’s a gold mine for long-tail keywords. It is shown in the bottom half of the SERPs, below the first page of organic results. It is a classic way of finding long-tail keywords related to a broad topic.

Do a Google search for the primary keyword related to your product or focus area and head over to the ‘Related searches’ section.

Google Related Search is an area that's a gold mine for long-tail keywords

Use site search on Google

Site search is also an easy way to find many keywords. However, it is important to determine their efficiency before using them. Visit Google and search for the following:

“ + broad keyword”

The search query will return all of the pages on the competitor’s website that contain the broad keyword.

Here are some examples of search results for the query “ + shoes”:

  • Men’s Dress Shoes in Black on Sale
  • Women’s Running Shoes on Amazon
  • Kids’ Sneakers for School
  • Shoes for Wide Feet
Site search is also an easy way to find many keywords

The above information can be used to find long-tail keyword variations of the head word shoes. You can conduct similar research to find

Use Google ads keyword planner

keyword planner page screenshot
Here are steps to use Google Ads Keyword Planner to search for long-tail keywords:

For this, you need to have a Google Ads account. If you don’t have one, create one.

Analyze the data to find long-tail keywords to be used in your SEO content strategy. However, keep in mind that Google Trends is an analytical tool, and one must use it to identify opportunities to target long-tail keywords that are gaining popularity.

  • Go to Tools.
  • Click Keyword Planner.
  • Click on Find new keywords.
  • Go to the ‘Start with a website’ option.
  • Enter your competitor’s website to get a list of all the keywords that appear in the URL.

Use Google trends

Google Trends is a free tool that helps you understand the latest search trends

Google Trends is a free tool that helps you understand the latest search trends related to a given topic. It shows relevant statistics about a keyword, such as

  • Interest over time
  • Interest by region

Use varied keyword research tools

How do I use keyword research tools to find long-tail keywords?

The Google keyword tool is a basic tool and a good place to begin your keyword research; however, if you’re looking for more long-tail keywords, try a variety of tools, such as the ESL Rank tool.

The ESL Rank Tool can be used to filter your keywords by volume, difficulty, and intent. For instance, you can exclude keywords that look irrelevant or generic.

The next step is to understand the search intent and user behavior behind each long-tail keyword. Both can be analyzed by looking at metrics like click-through rate, bounce rate, dwell time, and conversions.

It gives you insights into the effectiveness of the keywords in driving user engagement and achieving desired outcomes. It can also be used to create keyword clusters that can be useful in finding long-tail keywords.

Brainstorming to find creative ways

How to use brainstorming to find long-tail keywords?

Brainstorming is a great way to find long-tail keywords for your SEO content strategy. Here are some creative ideas to find valuable long-tail keywords.

  • Mind mapping is an effective way to create a visual diagram of your primary keyword and related subtopics, which you think can generate more specific keywords.
  • Use keyword modifiers like “what” and “how”, where,” etc. These words elicit issues that people have or will probably ask about.
  • Use modifiers such as location, time, price, quality, feature, benefit, problem, etc. These modifiers can help you come up with creative ideas for long-tail keywords.
  • Use the website’s internal search history as a guide to long-tail keywords.

If your website has an internal search function, you should check it to know what people are searching for on your site. Some of these queries may target specific products and services, and you may be surprised by their highly specific nature.

You can use Google Analytics to know the most popular search queries that people have used on your website. These queries can be used to identify long-tail keywords that you can target in your content.

Research your competitors

By using Google search and SEO tools, you can find out what long-tail keywords are being used by your competitors to make the first SERP for more general queries.

Take note of keywords ranking on the top pages and find ways to incorporate them into your content strategy. It will help to improve your ranking as well as expose you to keywords and ideas you might not have considered previously.

Conduct a gap analysis to find the gaps or opportunities that your competitors are missing or not exploiting well. You can use various tools to conduct competitor analysis and gap analysis, such as Moz, Ahrefs, or SpyFu. It will help you know what long-tail keywords your competitors are ranking for or missing.

Forums and Q&A sites

Forums and question-and-answer sites like Quora and Reddit are great ways to engage with people who are actually interested in your offerings, as they are committed enough to register and have actual conversations.

For platforms like Quora and Reddit, simply log in to the website with your personal email address and search for your keyword. Here is the step-wise procedure:

  • Create an account on Quora or Reddit
  • Search for your broad topic.
  • Analyze the results to find long-tail keywords that are best suited to your marketing campaigns.
Forums and question-and-answer sites like Quora and Reddit are great ways to engage

Use Ctrl+F in HTML

  • Open the HTML source code of your competitor’s website.
  • Press Ctrl+F and search for a common keyword.
  • The browser will highlight all the uses of that word. Go through the highlighted words to find long-tail keywords that your competitor is using.

Mining your search query reports

Mining your search query is the process of identifying and analyzing search queries used by people to find your website. These queries can be used to discover long-tail keywords that can be targeted in your content and SEO strategies. Following are easy steps to mine your search query to get long-tail keyword variations:

  • Identify the search queries driving the most traffic to your website. You can get this information in your Google search console reports.
  • Analyze the search queries to identify trends and patterns related to your targeted products and services.
  • Identify long-tail keywords related to these search queries. You can use a keyword research tool (such as the ESL keyword research tool) to identify these keywords.
  • Analyze the search volume and competition for each long-tail keyword to find which keywords are worth targeting. While mining your search query reports for long-tail keywords, here are some points that should be considered to get better results.
  • Look for search queries that are specific and relevant to your website. For example, if you sell men’s shoes, you may want to look for search queries like “men’s leather shoes for parties or “men’s dress shoes black on sale.”
  • Look for search queries that have low competition.
  • Look for search queries that have a high conversion rate—the queries for which people are more likely to take action on your website, such as making a purchase.

 Once you have identified a list of long-tail keywords that you want to target, you can incorporate them into your content and SEO strategies.

Browse eHow

Websites like eHow are primarily driven by long-tail keyword research. Such sites use powerful algorithms to find the keywords that meet the user’s intent, so the long-tail keywords it targets are highly likely to be high-quality keywords in which people are actually interested. eHow has a huge amount of content covering a wide range of topics. There are higher chances of finding content related to your long-tail keywords on eHow.

Browse Wikipedia

Wikipedia is one of the most optimized sites on the internet. When looking for primary keywords, check Wikipedia pages, and you will find a lot of its headings translate into long-tail keywords.For instance, here we searched for a targeted keyword, “men’s black shoes, in Wikipedia, and it gives us many ideas for long-tail keywords.

Wikipedia is one of the most optimized sites on the internet

Apart from that, you can conduct page research for your keyword and find out what other variations appear throughout the article. The “See Also” shown at the bottom of many Wikipedia articles can also help you find related keywords and phrases.

How to use long-tail keywords in your SEO strategy?

1. Create high-quality and relevant content

Create high-quality and relevant content

The best way to rank for long-tail keywords is by using relevant and high-quality content. It should be well written, engaging, and informative.

  • Make sure your content provides value to the users and has not been created just for the sake of rankings.
  • Content should answer the query of the searchers.
  • Conduct in-depth research to create informative content, including articles, blogs, and social media posts.
  • Use internal linking to link the content to the relevant pages on your website with similar or related long-tail keywords. It will help to create topical authority and a better user experience.

Read more:

2. Keyword-rich headlines

Keyword-rich headlines

Your headline should have relevant keywords satisfying the users queries related to product or services. Most people will scan your article for the first few words to know if it is relevant to what they are looking for. For instance, here are some keyword-rich headlines:

  • How to choose the best skin care products for dry skin (long tail keyword here is the best skin care products for dry skin)
  • How to Start a Successful Dropshipping Business in 2023
  • Best practices for writing effective blog posts for SEO

3. Optimize your title tags and meta descriptions

Title tags and Meta descriptions clear, concise, and relevant to your content.

Your title tags and meta-descriptions are the first things people notice when they search for your keywords.

  • They should be clear, concise, and relevant to your content.
  • Try to include long-tail keywords in your meta- tags and URL to improve your click-through rate and relevance.

Read more :

4. Focus on natural language

long-tail keyword strategy with natural language can do wonders for your business.

A long-tail keyword strategy with natural language can do wonders for your business. Avoid writing content stuffed with keywords with the sole aim of ranking high on search engines. The more natural and original is your content, the higher will your chances to rank on top SERPs.

5. Promote your content on social media.

Using long tail keyword make sure to promote it on social media

Once you have created relevant content using long-tail keywords, make sure to promote it on social media and other relevant websites. It will help you get more traffic to your website and improve your chances of ranking for long-tail keywords.

6. Mobile optimization

content should be mobile friendly

Make sure that your website and content are mobile friendly as a large number of users search using mobile devices.

7. Local SEO

local seo

If your business is serving users in a specific location or region, you should consider incorporating location based long tail keywords to attract traffic.

Read more:

How to measure the effectiveness of the long tail keywords

It is important to evaluate the effectiveness of long-tail keywords to know if they are driving the desired results or not. Here are some simple ways to measure the overall performance of your long-tail keywords:

Google Analytics: Use Google Analytics to measure the performance of pages where long-tail keywords are focused. One must use it analyze and track website traffic including metrics like organic traffic, bounce rate, time on page, and conversations. Compare the data with the overall performance of the site.

Keyword ranking: Monitor the ranking of your long-tail keywords in the search engine result pages. Tools like ESL Ranking Checker can help you track keyword rankings over time. If your long-tail keywords are moving up consistently, it is a positive sign. There are Paid or free keyword tools like SEMrush, Ahrefs, Moz, and ESL Keyword Ranker that can help you find, analyze, and optimize your long tail keywords.

Click-through rate: Check the CTR for your long-tail keyword phrases in the Google search console. When CTR is higher, it shows that your content is attracting more clicks and resonating with the user’s intent. Rank tracker tools like ESL Ranks pro can be used to monitor and report keyword rankings over time.

Traffic trends: Evaluate trends in the organic traffic for your long-tail-focused keywords. If there has been a steady increase in traffic.

Engagement metrics: Examine engagement metrics like the average time spent on the pages and the number of pages per session for visitors coming for long-term searches. Higher engagement suggests that you’re sharing relevant and engaging content.

Competitor analysis:Compare your rankings and performance for long-tail keywords against your competition. If you are consistently outranking them and driving more traffic and conversions, it means your long-tail keywords are effective.

User feedback: If users engage with your content in the form of comments, questions, and queries, it shows that your content is relevant to the user’s intent. It is a positive sign that you are addressing the user’s needs effectively.

Conduct a standard A/B test: One should conduct A/B teston landing pages to check if they are optimized. It can also be used to experiment with different long-tail keywords and analyze which variations drive better organic traffic and conversions.

Long-term analysis: One must be patient while evaluating the effectiveness of long-tail keywords. It is important to keep in mind that

ROI Calculation: Calculate the return on investment for your long-tail keyword strategy by dividing revenues generated from the strategy by the resources spent optimizing them.

Wrap Up

By incorporating long tail keywords effectively in content and marketing strategy, businesses can optimize their online presence and increase their organic traffic. Creating content using long tail search queries is an easy to go strategy to get powerful long term results.

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