Using Long-Tail Keywords: The Better Way to Optimize

When you first delve into SEO, most beginners do like they are told and focus on a popular keyword. And once upon a time, this was a good strategy. However, with more and more websites popping up, it’s becoming harder and harder to rank for a specific keyword.

The better solution is to go for rankable phrases. Long-tail keywords are specific phrases that are less common, but often searched for. This means the phrases will rank, and will have less competition than those high-traffic single words. Sounds great right? Here are few tips to get started using long-tail keywords to help your site rank in the search engines.

Do your research. Just like keywords, phrases should be thoroughly researched too. Determine some high ranking keywords that fit your site and use those to find your phrases. Plug those phrases into a keyword tool to find out how many searched they are getting, and if they are viable or not. Your goal is to find keyword phrase that have low competition, are relevant to your site and your audience, and is ranking in the search engines.

Create content. Now that you have your long-tail keywords, you need to use them in some killer content. If you’re just going to keyword stuff and write content that doesn’t sound natural, you’re efforts won’t make much of a difference. Your content should be well-written and engaging. It should aim to teach, entertain and intrigue; with your long-tail keywords sprinkled in and used naturally.

Optimize your page too. Beyond using your long-tail keywords in your content, you want to optimize your page for the same phrases. Take advantage of your meta descriptions, meta titles, image titles and headers, and add tags where allowed. Do whatever you can to help your page get indexed in the search engine results.

Keep on optimizing. SEO and using rankable long-tail keywords is not a one-time strategy. It’s a long term one, and one with compounding effects. Some phrases will produce immediate traffic results, while others will take a bit longer to show results. Do not give up and continue doing the research and targeting phrases that are often searched for and results will come.
Finding a few keywords that are popular is no longer the best SEO practice. There is simply too much competition for single, common words. Instead, focus your SEO effects on long-tail keywords, or phrases, that aren’t as common but are still being searched for. This strategy may just increase your page ranking and increase your traffic with genuinely interested readers.

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