Back in the beginning of SEO marketing, long tail keywords were considered one of the best ways to gain traffic.  Over time they have lost their appeal, being replaced by shorter, more popular keywords.  However, the internet changes and there is a lot of value to be found in long tail keywords as can be seen in this infographic by HitTail. You just have to know how to make it work for your business.

Understanding Long Tail Keywords.

It’s important to understand what long tail keywords are.  Ian Lurie describes the long tail as “Specific, niche search phrases, usually more than 2 words in length, that offer a low competition, low search volume and high searcher intent. “  For example, instead of the keyword ‘shirts’ you might have the phrase ‘dress shirts for church’ which is much more specific and gives you a far greater idea of what the user is actually looking for.


What People are looking for?

You must find the long tail keywords that users are looking for in regards to your business.  If you have a business that sells dress shirts, then you want to know what people are searching for related to dress shirts.  Suggester is an excellent free tool that will show you exactly what people are looking for in regards to your  phrase.


Make the information work for you.

Once you’ve discovered what people are looking for, it’s time to do something with that knowledge. Now this may sound easier said than done, or like it’s going to be more trouble than it’s worth, but it’s not.   The conversion rate for long tail keywords is far greater than that of short keywords because it receives a significantly greater amount of traffic as illustrated here on The Moz Blog making it an incredibly valuable tool when used right.

So how do you actually use this to your advantage?

Neil Patel describes exactly how you can focus your efforts on turning the benefits of long tail SEO into profits by focusing not on your page ranking, but on high converting landing pages based on the long tail keywords.

Don’t Abandon Other Methods

Obviously long-tail SEO should not be your main marketing tool, but it is a highly valuable one that can significantly increase your website traffic and ultimately your sales.  Some suggest that having a solid SEO strategy in the first place will eventually create long-tail SEO which is true; good SEO should lead to your site getting picked up when someone uses a longer search term.

However, what optimizing for long term SEO does on top of that is create a broader net with each part working on its own to increase your site’s visibility.  For example, a really good fisherman is going to go catch a lot of fish with skill and the right bait with just a pole, but a really good fisherman is going to catch a lot more fish if he also adds a fishing net to what he’s already doing.


Using long tail SEO is a great way will help increase your visibility, your traffic, and your sales if you use it right.  It was the marketing tool of the past and it’s quickly becoming the tool of the future as well.