Long Tail Keywords – The Most Profitable SEO Strategy For Small Business Websites

Long Tail Keywords – The Most Profitable SEO Strategy For Small Business Websites


What are Long Tail Keywords?

Long Tail Keywords are either keywords or keyword phrases for which there are relatively few competitors on the search engine results pages. They generally consist of three, four or more keywords and are less competitive because they are not searched for as often. For that same reason, they can be very lucrative to web publishers and small business websites.

The term, “long tail” was coined by Chris Anderson, Editor-in-chief of “Wired” Magazine for his book, “The Long Tail”. It refers to the shape of an economic distribution curve that graphs the basic supply and demand of the digital economy. In particular it refers to the tail end of the curve where demand is very, very low.

Understanding Long Tail Keywords

To give you an example of a long tail keyword, let’s assume that your company is a Denver-based web site marketing and design firm. You could target a broad keyword for your website like “Web design” or you could target a long tail keyword phrase like “Denver web site design” or “Colorado Business web site design”.

What’s the difference (in terms of website traffic results)?

My most recent Google search of the term “Web design” (in quotes) returned over 134 million search engine results! Granted, many of those results may not be directly relevant and may include such things as robotically generated pages, web feeds and all sorts of things. The point still remains that competition for that keyword phrase is colossal!

Any web page you create to target that phrase is very likely to be buried too far back in the bottom of the Google search engine results pages to be of much use for web design lead generation.

On the other hand, my search for “Denver web site design” (also in quotes) returned less than 8,000 results…a much more manageable figure. When I narrow it down even further by including the word “business”, as in “Denver Business web site design” (still in quotes), I ended up with 5 listed results.

Some Benefits of a Long Tail Keywords Strategy

Keywords are the foundation of how Google and other major search engines filter the web to match information seekers with relevant web pages. A website with the proper seo (Search Engine Optimization) uses keywords to attract traffic from the search engine results pages.

Here are a few important benefits of adopting a long tail keyword strategy in developing your content and planning the architecture of your website (for seo purposes).

a. Less Competition

There are 2 aspects of web site content strategy you must master to build a business website that is highly effective for lead generation and getting targeted web visitor traffic. The first is keyword research. The other, is competitive intelligence research.

Not only should you target keywords that are being searched for in significant numbers by your ideal prospects and clients, you should always know how much competition you will have to wade through before your targeted web content shows up on the first page of Google and other search engines.

By staying away from hyper-competitive keywords and keyword phrases, you can gain momentum from winning the first page of Google for a lot of long-tail keywords. This momentum builds into a self-perpetuating traffic snowball as more and more traffic gets referred to you from the first page for these related terms. Google begins to bid your website to the top for other related terms.

b. More Profitable Web Traffic

The specificity of these Long tail terms makes them far more effective for attracting highly targeted and ready-to-buy prospects. A person searching for the term “market research” is likely to be searching for general information. It could be a student in a developing country who is not part of your targeted market.

On the other hand, a search for “Denver market research services” is likely to mean that this person is located in the Denver area, and actively looking to hire a market research firm for the area. This principle also applies to product-centric long tail keywords like “Sony CCD 420 TVL Security Camera”.

c. Greater Traffic Stability

Some unethical seo consultants and firms tell their clients partial truths by making a big deal out of getting them into the #1 spot for a single relevant long tail keyword. A lot of times, that keyword is geographically specific and not that difficult to temporarily rank highly for.

However, business owners are later dismayed when they find that their website soon disappears off the search engine results for that keyword if they don’t pay monthly seo maintenance fees. Much of the money spent in this way is a waste.

Instead, most small companies would find their marketing dollars far better utilized by targeting a large number of well-researched, highly relevant long tail keywords, and creating content that pre-sells their products and services.

If you do this, your website will eventually be ranked highly for targeted long tail keywords and a lot of related keywords that you do not actively optimize for. That’s because Google and the other search engines begin to do a lot of the heavy lifting for you.



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