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SEO Strategy – The Long Tail and Short of It

long tail

If you have a website or a blog that you want to rank for, whatever, then you need to understand something about long tail SEO.

Search has changed.

It’s evolved.

So has SEO. (search engine optimization)

Years ago you could put up a trash site stuffed with keyword and ads and make a bundle. That was before the time that I was into this, or maybe I’d be writing this from Bora Bora…

Times have changed.

The brain boxes at Google have turned that search algorithm into an artificial intelligence genius that returns the most relevant results of any search engine.

You can protest Google and go use the others, and hey I’m all for competition, but you’ll soon find that your search results suck compared to what you get with the Big G.

You need a balanced mix of relevant keywords for your niche.


You need some of the broad terms, which end up in there just as a matter of course, and then you take a handful of the long tail keywords and sprinkle them throughout. You have to pay attention to how it reads. Remember, you are creating content for real people who are searching for it, not just for the Google bots. (and the Google bots’ Master, the Algorithm, will know it)

I know, I know, this is all starting to read like TRON, where there is this alternate universe of programs within the network, but you’re not far off the mark these days.

The Forbes article where I got the idea to write about this is spot on, and since I write my share of SEO related posts, it just fit.

If you write web content or blog as a large portion of your business strategy, then you need to know this. You can’t leave it all to some SEO guy to set up for you. It’s in your hands. The author of the content needs to do the keyword research, using the best tools they can get their mitts on, and craft that blog post around it.

Yes, I said “craft”.

You’ve heard of craft beers, and hand crafted whatever…

Artisan blogging… I think I just coined a new term.

You have to treat your blogging like an artist or other craftsman would treat their trade, their product, or their art. The time must be taken to do the research and SEO is a part of that. If it’s mostly opinion pieces then great that cuts the topical research a bit, if you know the topic well, but there needs to be some SEO. Only when you bleed SEO, like me, can you know that your keywords, both long tail and otherwise, WILL be in there as a matter of course.

Well, okay, you can have fun with some posts and wing it without doing that, when you’re good enough, like I am, but I am speaking mainly to those who are newbies and need guidance.

Why long tail keywords?

long tail keyword seo


Here’s why.

Say you want to rank for a general or broad keyword that gets 10,000 keyword searches per month, but it’s really competitive. The amount of back links and other factors you would have to meet are just too high. Well, if you found a handful of closely related long tail keywords that each get much less competition, then you can rank for them much easier. You say great but the long tails get much less search traffic. You would be correct if you mean just one of the long tails, but add up their combined searches and you may find that the combination meets or exceeds the total for the one broad keyword.

Does that make sense now?

This is why you need a strategy, and it’s not rocket science.

Over time you will see your traffic rise.

Remember that other factors play into this. Things like domain age, authority, back links, social shares, and who knows what else. I’m writing here about keyword strategy since so many focus on that, and it’s pretty important.

Just remember to write naturally and who you are writing for.

I wrote this for you, the SEO concerned person. I didn’t write a bunch of incoherent sentences glued together with some keywords. That is the past. Leave it in the past.

The best advice any SEO person can give is to write for your audience. Write from the heart and keep it on topic. Relevance rules the roost.

When you write for your niche in a well-structured and coherent way, you will naturally include all kinds of relevant long tail keywords anyway, so don’t sweat it “too” much. Less is more, so it is with SEO. Too much can get you in Google’s sights when the web spam team decides to DE index your site. Don’t go there.

Write from the heart, write for your topic, and write with the same passion and caring that that artisan uses when they are creating their own masterpieces.

You are the Rembrandt of your sites.

Now go create a masterpiece!

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