Ask The Expert

8/25/2010

- Michael Buczek, SEO Specialist

If you are seeking answers to interactive marketing and branding questions then ASK The EXPERT! In this monthly series we will have a rotating expert, to answer your questions in various areas including: SEO, SEM, Social Media, Website Design, Website Analytics, Website Usability, Affiliate Marketing and Content Management Systems by a different expert each month!

Q: A dimension of Google’s recent algorithm update, is that there is going to be more emphasis on “long tail keywords”. What are long tail keywords and how can I use them in my website?

A: With the recent “Mayday” update, Google will be focusing more on long tail keyword phrases as they continue to find the best sites that match up with searchers long tail queries.

In many cases, a long tail keyword phrase is used late in the “buying cycle”. These searches contain a phrase that is three to five words long and is often used when the searcher is looking for something very specific. A general keyword phrase for a page may target a term such as “running shoes”, where a long tail keyword phrase would take that term a bit deeper and more specific. A long tail keyword could be something like “high arch running shoes” or “blue high arch running shoes”. As you add more words to the phrase, it becomes more specific and more targeted to the products you offer.

When using long tail keywords, you still need to do some research to understand how searchers are incorporating them into their search behavior. Once you identify the long tail keyword you want to use, you then need to determine the appropriate page that it should be targeted on. A good rule of thumb is that the longer the phrase, the deeper level page it should be on. Another great place to utilize long tail keyword phrases is in a blog. Blog content is good for long tail keywords because a blog can be more conversational in nature, where sometimes web content has to be very informational and hit on the specifics of a product or service. Blog posts can take subject matters and keywords to the next level, making them ideal targets for search!

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