All too frequently new clients present me with their desire to rank for one or more high traffic short tail keywords. Without laying the foundations this can be difficult and risky to the long term health of a website. Depending on the clients niche I recommend using a long-tail keyword strategy where possible as this yields a number of benefits.
Short-tail keywords in most niches are difficult to rank for due to competition. While short tail keywords do attract significant traffic, prospective clients are not searching for a specific product or service and the traffic does not readily convert.
A long-tail keyword strategy is not about picking one specific keyword, rather an aggregate search volume strategy that targets hundreds / thousands of low competition at once.
While Long tail keywords typically attract very few searches on their own, prospective clients searching for products or services using 3-4 or more words are generally looking for something specific which means that traffic from long-tail search will more readily convert/be of greater value to a business.
Traffic volume * Traffic value. = Total Value.
The concept of a long tail keyword strategy is based on the idea that a website owner should try and rank for as many long tail keywords as possible. This is achieved through implementing a broad targeted content strategy.
Because long-tail keywords are generally low competition they rank easily and while individually attract few visitors when you have a lot of content targeting multiple long-tail keywords, the aggregate effect results in significant and diverse website traffic.
When combined with a planned site structure and a strong internal linking strategy, onsite content will re-enforce top level pages and increase page-rank / trust. This will in turn cause a website to rank for short-tail keyword variants without even factoring the sites back link profile / offsite SEO.
If you would like to talk to an account manager about possible the application of a long tail keyword strategy to your website, keyword research or a complete content marketing solution, please contact us.