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Pursuing The Long Tail For Better SEO Rankings

Search Engine Optimization February 24th, 2009



Pursuing The Long Tail For Better SEO RankingsFor those of you that are looking to build a new site with SEO or Organic rankings in mind this blog is pointed at you.

Firstly, a reminder of what exactly is “The Long Tail”.

The Long Tail is a keyword phrase involving a set of 3 or more keywords strung together. This is essentially taking a core phrase and matching it with relevant additional keywords.  The result is a more targetted visitor to your website.

If you own a shoe store web site, a core term for you may be “leather shoes” but a long tail search term might be “brown leather shoes” or “men’s leather shoes”

Long Tail Strategy

When launching a new site it is often a mistake to think you can go against the big boys for core terms. (such as my example “leather shoes”.) A better strategy when performing your keyword research, is to line up a large set of long tail phrases. Long tail keyword phrases will yield lower visits each, but when many of them are compounded the total search volume can come close to core terms.

In addition, Long Tail searches tend to convert better, are lower in cost (if you are running PPC campaigns), and are generally easier to rank for. In the early stages of a web campaign I prefer to target longer phrases in order to yield results and get the web property to sustain itself, rather than go after higher competing terms in an all-or-nothing scenario.

Long Tail Ranking Factors

What factors effect your ability to get ranked high on search engines?

Age of a Web Site, Web Links, Diversity of Links & Domain Authority.

These 4 items can comprise 50% to 75% of the weight of your search engine ranking. Obviously if it is a new website you are launching all of these elements will be working against you.  So what can you do?  You can carefully craft your website content to ensure that it has various instances of your long tail keyword plan.

Once a new web site has gained some credibility and age, these ranking factors can drop to under 40%, and you can then begin to grow your search engin marketing strategy by targetting core search terms.

Need Help with Keyword Selection?

Try these tools to help you with your keyword selection process:

Google Keyword Tool
Keyword Discovery

Keyword Density

Here is a good tool to help you measure your keyword density


Post By Colin (20 Posts)

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Also known as NEO, Colin can be found walking around the neighborhood giving everyone SEO tips and tricks. When he can find the time to peel himself away from the team at TechWyse he often can feel compelled to bless us with his thoughts through the Rise To The Top blog.

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Pursuing The Long Tail For Better SEO Rankings

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