Oct 9, 2021

What are Long Tail Keywords and Why does it matter in SEO?

Suman Samal, Asst. Marketing Manager
Suman Samal
What are Long Tail Keywords and Why does it matter in SEO?
Suman Samal, Asst. Marketing Manager
Suman Samal
Oct 9, 2021

What are Long Tail Keywords and Why does it matter in SEO?

What are Long Tail Keywords? Do they really matter in SEO? How to use Longtail keywords to boost organic traffic? Read this guide to find everything about long-tail keywords and their importance.
What are Long Tail Keywords and Why does it matter in SEO?

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SEO has become harder than ever. With more competition pouring in, you can't merely rank by stuffing the keywords or using any blackhat SEO technique.

So, how would you rank for the main keyword that is highly competitive?

We have got a two-word answer for it- Long-tail keywords.

Long-tail keywords can drive tons of traffic to your site and for this excellent reason, it has been a popular term among the SEOs. There is so much traffic in the long tail that can even surpass a single focus keyword term.

In this article, we will give you a detailed guide on Long-tail keywords and how does it boost your keyword research efforts.

What are Long-tail Keywords?

Long-tail keywords are the less popular keywords and have a low search volume. These keywords are typically more specific and relevant to your niche.

These keywords may be three to four words long and are very specific.

A more common explanation of long-tail is that these keywords are used by the customers when they are closer to the purchase or when they are using the voice search.

Long-tail keywords are more accessible to rank than common keywords.

So, how would you use the long-tail keywords in the content to generate more traffic if they have a higher search volume?

Why are they called long-tail keywords?

Long-tail keywords are the keywords that are used by the searchers or potential customers.

The actual keyword itself may be long but there is a lot of additional information added to it in order to make it more specific and relevant.

In 2021, Google's focus on user experience and intent will mean that long-tail SEO strategies are more important.

According to research by Ahrefs, 92.22% of the words on Google engine get only ten or fewer searches per month or even lesser.

In broader terms, these are more specific keywords rather than generic ones. Thus, the target audience becomes even narrower.

However, you will have most of the readers with the intention of buying your products or services.

Refer to this amazing graph by Ahrefs:

search demand curve

As evident from the graph that I shared above, long-tail keywords take the name from the graph of Google search results. The head of this curve is the head term and has high-volume whereas the lower portion of the curve is the "tail" and is less searched but lucrative.

That's why these are called long-tail keywords.

The violet-colored portion gives the unpopular searches or the long-tail keyword searches.

They are called long-tail because they are at the very long end of the search graph.

Are long tail keywords important for SEO?

As said earlier, using long-tail keywords over the head term will bring only the visitors that are actually interested in buying your products or services.

Other than this, there are two good reasons why Long-tail keywords are a great way to boost your SERP rankings and organic traffic.

#1: Long tail keywords are less competitive

The major idea behind using long-tail keywords is their less competition as compared to head terms because they tend to be less popular than shorter keywords.

They are also easier to rank for because there are fewer searches per month for these keywords.

For example, let's say you have a focus keyword as 'keyword research.'

Now, you have around 8 billion pages to beat this competition.

keyword research

You may have a lot of keywords that are just similar to the one above but these keywords would be less competitive and also harder to rank for because there will be many other businesses using them.

Now, the long tail keyword "best keyword research tools for SEO" will have only 8 million pages to beat.

best keyword research tools for SEO

So, the competition reduces to almost more than half.

#2: Long-tail keywords are more specific

Long-tail keywords are also more specific because they target a very small set of people.

This means that you can reach out to them and connect with them on the basis of their interests in your products or services.

In the case of head keywords, there is a much wider range of people who may be interested in your products or services.

Let's say you have a focus keyword as 'keyword research.'

Now, with all these millions of pages to beat, how do you make sure that your products or services will be relevant to the people who are searching for this keyword?

You can't.

Now, with a long-tail keyword like "keyword research tool," only 10 million pages would need to be searched before reaching out to the right people.

You can target your marketing efforts much more effectively with long-tail keywords.

#3: Long tail keywords have higher conversion rates.

In the case of head keywords, you will have to find a way to convert people into your customers.

So, if someone comes across your website that is using a keyword as 'keyword research,' their intent is unclear.

But, if the searcher comes across a website that is using the long-tail keyword "keyword research tool," chances are that they will be interested in buying the product.

Long tail keywords can boost your content marketing efforts by targeting an accurate set of audiences who are interested in your products or services.

How to find Long Tail Keywords?

Long tail keywords are extremely specific and they have low search volume.

This means that you will need to dig deep into the keywords on Google's Keyword Planner tool in order to find these long-tail keywords.

You can either use the free tools for keyword research or a plethora of paid tools are available.

Google search results

The first method is to use the Google Autocomplete suggestions

Take a broad topic and type it into the Google search bar. You will see various suggestions that are close to your head term.

Now, these are the keyword phrases that are low in volume but can help target the right audience.

You can also use the 'People Also Ask' feature to find long-tail keywords.

Just type in the long-tail keyword phrase into Google's search bar and see how many people are asking about that particular term.

You can also use the 'Related search results' to get more suggestions on long-tail keywords.

Answer the Public

Answer The Public is a helpful keyword research tool that generates question-focused keywords.

So, you can use Answer The Public to find long-tail keywords that are related to your topic.

Answer The Public is a very popular tool and has a large database of questions and answers.

As you type in the keyword phrase, it will show you all the related questions that are similar to your query.

You can also filter the results by typing in a specific category or tags and see how many people are asking about that particular topic.

There are other tools that you can use to find long-tail keywords. These include the tools like:


SEMrush is an effective tool that helps you to analyze your competitor's traffic. It is a keyword research tool that uses various metrics like keywords, traffic, etc. Although the tool is specifically for affiliate marketers, it is also used by eCommerce businesses and other industries for generating the list of keywords.

SEMRush also has the 'related search results' feature where it will show you all the related searches for the main term.

This way, you can generate various keyword ideas and use them throughout the content.


Ubersuggest is a keyword research tool for SEO and PPC. It also has the long-tail keywords browser which includes all types of suggestions.

It is clear that it will give you useful insights to find optimized keywords related to your topic or product by giving tips like high search volume, competitor suggestion, etc.' If you are looking for more specific queries, you can use the filters to generate a list of keywords.

Related Keywords' feature makes sure that you get more ideas from various sources such as forums and blogs about how others are ranking their keyword.

Google Search Console Performance Report

Google Search Console is an easy way to generate the long tail keywords that you might be already ranking for.

From the performance report, you can look for the keywords that are already ranking on the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th page of Google. Once you use these keywords in your content and pay attention to SEO, you can hit the first page of Google within a few weeks for those keywords.  

The only downside is that you need to do some research and extra hard work to use these keywords.

How to Use Long-Tail Keywords?

When it comes to using long-tail keywords, there are two ways:

#1: Create new content around the long-tail term

The first option is that you can create a whole new blog post around the long-tail keyword.

This way, you can make it more unique and generate more traffic for your site.

While such keywords are easier to rank for, they may generate less traffic as compared to the ones that are focused around the head term.

Also, the content must be well-researched and deep enough to dig into other related keywords.

#2: Sprinkle the long-term keywords in the content

The other way is to optimize the content with a few short tail keywords first and then inject various long tail keywords around it.

It is always a good practice to use the combination of long-tail keywords and medium tail terms.

This way, you can optimize the content to rank for both long tail and medium-tail terms.

Search engines like Google and Yahoo use the same algorithm to rank for both short and long-tail keywords.

Therefore, by using these two techniques, you can increase your traffic as well as the number of page views on your site.

Why integrate long tail keywords in your blog posts?

The two main reasons you should integrate these keywords into your blog posts are traffic and conversions.

Since 95.5% of the search terms are unpopular and have lower search volume as compared to the other 4.5%.

However, these keywords are an important part of SEO strategy since it helps target the user with specific search intent.

Also, by integrating long-tail keywords in your blog posts, you can create more natural and readable content.

It is always better to include important terms throughout the content.

This way, users will find it easier to understand your blog post as well as they will be able to reach a particular keyword search result faster.

Let's take an example by comparing the two searches;

"Car" vs "Ford cars under $100,000".

Which do you think targets a better audience? Obviously, the latter.

In a nutshell, People search for long-tail keywords when they are usually on their way to converting into customers or clients, and this makes them very valuable prospects in the conversion process.

A great example of how long-tail keywords are used is in YouTube videos.

Most of the YouTube videos are optimized for long-tail keywords like “how to”, “top ten”, and so on.

How to get TONS of search traffic from long-tail keywords?

To get quality traffic to your blog, you should use the long-tail keywords sprinkled into your content.

Step 1: The first step is finding which keywords your website should rank for.

The foremost step is to find out what keywords should you use to rank in organic searches. This is the main keyword that should be used in your content, website, or blog.

Step 2: Find relevant long-tail keyword suggestions.

The next step is to generate the longtail keyword for your content. You can either use the Google autocomplete suggestions or the long tail keyword generator tools.

Tools like Ahrefs, SEMRush, and SERanking give suggestions on the best long-tail keywords for your main keyword.

For example, Ahrefs gives long tail suggestions using the 'related keywords' section.

Step 3: Create awesome content around it.

Once you have all the long-tail keywords with some search volume, you can incorporate these longtail keywords in your content. But, make sure that the content is relevant enough.

Use these longtail keywords in your header tags. You can also use these keywords in your image alt text, body text, and H1 page title and meta descriptions.

Search engines use these keywords to understand the relevancy of your content.

Long-tail keyword examples

If you are still wondering about the Long-tail keywords and their usage, here are some examples of long-tail keywords.

For the head term "black tea", the long tail keywords that Google or Long-tail keyword tool suggests us:

  • Black tea benefits
  • how to make black tea
  • black tea to buy
  • black tea side effects.

Well, a combination and variation of these keywords can create content that is visible to search engines and align with the searcher's intent.

Similarly, for the head term 'SEO tools', the long tail keyword suggestions:

  • SEO tools free
  • SEO tools for youtube
  • SEO tools for website


Q. How long should a long tail keyword be?

Ans: Long-tail keywords are the phrases that are usually three to five words long.

Q. What is the use of long-tail keyword?

Ans: Long tail keywords are good for building up your content which align with search engines' intent, and can get more traffic to your website.

Q. What is the difference between long tail and short tail?

Ans: Short tail keywords are the phrases that are usually one to three words long.

Long-tail keywords can be a combination of both short and long tail keyword, depending on the length of these two terms.


Long-tail keywords are more specific than head keywords, but they can still be very useful for SEO. If you haven't been ranking well for head keywords, switch your focus to long-tail keywords instead.

Long-tail keywords are typically less competitive and easier to rank for, so the possibilities are endless. There are a number of keywords and search queries and with low-volume that can bring tons of traffic to your site from different keywords.

We hope that our guide on long-tail keyword strategy would have helped you get a better understanding of how to use long-tail keywords.

Suman Samal
Asst. Marketing Manager
ABout the AUTHOR
Suman Samal
Asst. Marketing Manager

Suman Samal is a Asst. Marketing Manager at Scalenut. She is a technology enthusiast with a keen interest in content marketing and SEO. She truly believes that with the right set of tools every organization can improve the ROI of their content marketing campaigns. She spends her time managing content operations at Scalenut and ensuring that everything we publish is of the highest quality.

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