Long Tail Search Terms: A Method for Finding Relevant Ones
The long-tail (3+ words) search space is where 70% of search queries occur. If you don’t believe it, ask yourself how many words are in the key terms you typically use to find what you want online. Even more important (and more amazing) is that Google says 25% of all search terms on any given day are search terms it is seeing for the first time.
Long tail search queries are very difficult to research with Google and Bing keyword tools; they almost never appear. There are other ways to research the relevance of these terms to your market, though. Basically you want to examine web pages that are doing well for the market you want to target; with the following method:
1. Identify the 10-50 3-4 word search terms you think people are using to find that you have to offer. Google, including Google Analytics, isn’t going to be any help here. However, anyone on your sales staff will be a great resource for this.
2. Perform an incognito (important) Google Search for each term.
3. Looking only at the first page of search results, determine if your competitors (particular industry leaders) are coming up in search results.
4. If they are, this is a good term.
5. If they are not, adjust the term until you do see your competitors—i.e. “HPC technology” rather than “high performance technology”.
This is a really simple way to find more relevant long-tail terms, but it’s not perfect. There are much more comprehensive methods that require a lot of time—a good subject for another post.
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