How to Use Long Tail Keywords? A Practical Guide in 2020

How to Use Long Tail Keywords? Key phrases, focused keywords, secondary keywords, synonymous keywords, broad keywords and long tail keywords. These can quite often pose a challenge for the writer.

But for the marketer, creating content around the right keyword can result in huge rankings and amazing opportunities in Google. What perplexes writers is really not the keywords themselves but how to use them. And the odd combinations of those key terms. Sometimes these are grammatically inappropriate! 

How do we creatively insert a long tail keyword in our content for best results? This post ‘How to use long tail keywords?’ will explore that in detail.

So when you’re looking up keywords to optimize your content with, you can either go with broad or you can go with long tail keywords. Broad keywords are usually one to two words long. They’re also known as short tail keywords. 

How Long are Long Tail keywords?

are anywhere from two to three to five words long. Now why are long tail terms such an opportunity? 

Lower Competition

They are so much easier to rank for than broad terms.

They are awesome opportunities for new or emerging sites.

Higher Buying Intent

So when someone looks up a longtail keyword, they’re usually looking for a more specific answer to their question. They’re much more likely to be in the last stage of the sales funnel which is consideration or decision.

For example, someone looking up shoes isn’t really ready to buy. But someone looking up a specific type of shoe and a specific size. And a specific gender and a specific color is much more ready to buy.

Now I often hear that broad keywords are tempting because of the high search volume. So you may have hundreds of thousands of people looking for that broad term. And maybe only 10 to 20 or 30 people looking for that longtail keyword.

But here’s the fact. Do you want the right traffic or a ton of traffic?

How to Use Long Tail Keywords?

Long tail keyword opportunities are great with the right keyword difficulty. If you are a new blogger, it will be difficult to rank for anything above 50 on the keyword difficulty score.

So that scale in the keyword research tools like ubersuggest and Google Keyword Planner is really great. Because you know at a glance the keyword difficulty.

50 and below is a great number. That means you have a possible chance at getting your content in high rankings in Google. I also recommend going long-form at 2,000 words. Long-form content gets higher ranking in search results.

You should also write one content piece around one keyword. You don’t want to dilute that content piece with too many keywords.

Natural Usage of Long Tail Keywords

Let’s talk about natural usage for keywords in your content. First of all, the days of keyword stuffing are gone. No more do you want to stuff a content piece with as many keywords as you can fit in. That’ll actually get your content de-ranked in Google, not ranked.

This also means that you don’t want to keep using the same keyword over and over again.

You want to be synonymous and natural. Think of it like a conversation with a real person.

Would you insert the same phrase over and over in your conversation?

If you want to get a point across you might word it in a few different ways. So think of being synonymous and natural with your keyword usage.

What does that look like when you get a keyword to write content around? Let’s say for example a client gave us this keyword, “best UX designer Durban”.

That’s a great keyword for our client but it’s a bit too clumsy to use in our copy as is.

The best approach is to weave that keyword in your content naturally.

Here’s an example of a title we could create for the content piece. “Find the Best UX Designer in Durban”.

Doesn’t that sound normal? Then you can use variations of that keyword phrase throughout your copy. So the secret is, don’t force the keyword. Be synonymous with the content you create and how you fit that keyword in. Always remember, natural usage is the best usage. 

So what do you do with really awkward phrases that you have to write content pieces around?

Let’s say for example we’re given the phrase “eyedoctor in Cape Town”. There’s no space between the first two words.

What the heck do we do?

In Google search results, there is absolutely no difference between “eyedoctor” and “eye doctor”. We’re humans writing for humans. So there should be no difference in how we would normally pronounce, write or use our language when we write content.

Placement of Keywords is Really Important

Remember to always use your keyword in your meta description, meta title and headers. This is really important. Because it kind of gives Google a table of content. Like what’s at the beginning of a book that tells Google what the content is all about. What the topic is about.

So you have to put your keywords in the right places.

Lastly, remember that you can get creative with these long tail keywords. So for example, let’s say we’re given a keyword “glutenfree pasta Johannesburg”.

So you don’t have to jam this keyword everywhere on your page. You can break it up in a number of ways like “pasta”, “johannesburg”, “glutenfree”, “glutenfree pasta”, “glutenfree in johannesburg”, “pasta in johannesburg”. There are a lot of variations for that one long tail keyword phrase.

It’s all about balance. Be creative, don’t overdo it, and write like you’re speaking to a human.

And don’t forget to place that keyword in optimal places where Google can find it and pick it up. Like your meta description, your meta title and your headers.

How can you tell if you’re overdoing it with a keyword? Read your content out loud. Does it sound natural to you? If not, rework it. You’ll be able to hear where it sounds clunky and you’ll be able to hear where you have used the term too many times.

Reading your content aloud is a great way to get the flow of that content piece.

So this was all about ‘How to use long tail keywords’. Please leave a comment below if you have a question or clarification. Check out our posts on On-Page SEO, Off-Page SEO and Content Writing SEO for more knowledge. Thank you so much for reading.