Ethical Long Tail Search marketing – long tailed what, now?

March 23, 2011 - Digital State Marketing

SEO phrases and terminology can be baffling for the uninitiated. A simple and logical explanation of the term Long Tail SEO, how it works within an SEO campaign framework and why it’s so important to your site.

Long Tail SEO – long tailed what, now?

The world of SEO is filled with terminology that seems specifically designed to bar entry to anyone without an English/SEO dictionary. However, there is a logic behind the thinking and naming of various aspects of SEO terminology and this is the case with the term ‘long tail SEO’.

To really explain what long tail is, it’s best to think of it in a more pictorial form. If you imagine a graph of your optimum search terms for your website in relation to the traffic provided, the graph would have a peak for your most popular term, with the graph tailing off to the least used term. It’s this ‘tail’ that makes up the bulk of your website search terms and subsequently the majority of your traffic. Analysis of this tail can yield up a plethora of search terms that can be incorporated into your overall SEO campaign to maximise the amount of traffic directed to your site and, ultimately, your ranking on the major search engines.

Long tail SEO is an extremely useful developmental tool in the construction of an effective SEO campaign. By utilising this particular strategy, the net is cast much wider, incorporating phrases and keywords that may be shorter in length but far more business-specific in their approach. Many SEO campaigns limit the number of search phrases they incorporate into their strategy – thus limiting the number of potential visitors to the site by excluding more common but perhaps less specific terminology. The art of long tail SEO is to build your website content around not only the most commonly used specific search terms but also variations that may not score highly on your initial algorithms but do constitute the more ‘common man’ usage of search engine terminology.

The key factor in converting long tail SEO into actual traffic is to make sure that every page of your site explains who you are, what you do and presents a clear call to action. By using these long tail terms, traffic that may be interested generically in your field but would otherwise slip through the net will end up directed to your site. It’s then up to you to make sure they don’t bounce.