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What is a “Long Tail” Keyword, and Why is it Important for SEO?

SEO Marketing Programs

Before we talk about the definition of a long tail keyword, we need to discuss the term “long tail” itself. Long-tail has been in use as statistical term describing frequency distribution since 1946, but has been recently popularized by Chris Anderson, author of the book The Long Tail: Why the Future of Business is Selling Less of More. This book describes how stocking a large number of products with low demand or have a low sales volume can collectively equal the sales of all but a few very popular single products over a relatively long time period. This is how smaller or specialty companies can compete effectively against large, high volume businesses. The same concept applies to keywords.

Standard keywords tend to be one or two words that are very common and bring up millions of possible results dominated by large corporations or sites with a huge presence on the web. You cannot compete with the bigwigs that dominate the top rankings on the first pages of the Google results.

However, a long tail keyword puts together several specific keywords applicable to your site in such a way that mimics how a user might search for your product or service. You want your long tail keywords to be 3 to 6 word phrases that target your good or service precisely.

For example if you own a company that specializes in importing fresh water tropical fish from South America, you don’t want to select “tropical fish” as a keyword. That will encompass many large companies including several national retail pet store chains. But if you narrow down the focus with a keyword such as “South American freshwater tropical fish“ you have a much better chance of getting in the top 100 rankings for that keyword, and possibly even reach the first page in the Google results.

And getting on that first page is the key to bringing traffic, as well as paying customers to your site. People rarely navigate past the first couple pages of search results, so getting your listing on that first page is critical for your success.

Next Month – Learn about some of the tricks and tips for creating excellent long-tail keywords that will boost your site’s SEO rankings.

Let Search Marketing Resource Add Long Tail Keywords to Your SEO Marketing Program

Let us help you create long tail keywords to improve your SEO ranking for your website. Long tail keywords are just one of the SEO strategies that Search Marketing Resource can provide for your site. Other services we offer include social media marketing, mobile device friendly website design, and SEO content management. Sign up for a free search marketing proposal with no obligation today.



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