Ranking on the first page of Google is challenging, especially when your company is in a highly-competitive industry. The truth is, to rank of the first page of Google Search Results for high-competition keywords it would take time, money, the constant pushing of high-quality content, and a skilled marketing professional who can come up with, and execute effective strategies.
Just a few years ago you could spend a couple of thousand dollars on keyword-stuffed content and backlinks in place on link farms and essentially “cheat” your way into the first page. As you can imagine the quality of website, content, and search results had severely diminished. Google’s team took it upon themselves to rework their algorithm to ensure that users would only get high-quality, highly-relevant results. Every now and then their algorithm is fine-tuned again and they release another update. While there is no magic formula to getting on the first page, marketers everywhere know that the most important thing Google values are customer experience and the quality of their results. Google wants to provide users with high-quality content that is relevant to their search terms (keywords).
There is one other way you can rank on the first page of Google that would be much easier and take a lot less time. 70% of all searches performed on Google are long-tail keywords and you can utilise these long-tail keywords to get these users on your website.
What are Long-Tail Keywords?
While most targeted keywords are made up of 1 to 3 words, long-tail keywords are phrases made up of 4 words or more. Oftentimes these key “phrases” are questions or statements that individuals search for in order to find what they are looking for. Collectively, long-tail keywords make up more than 50% of searches performed on Google worldwide. Long-tail keywords are much more specific than regular keywords. The benefit of using long-tail keywords is the fact that there is a lot less competition using them to get on the first page of Google search results.
How Do I Determine What Long-Tail Keywords I Should Use?
Long-tail keywords allow you to tap into specific searches made by Google users. Most companies focus on shorter keywords, which means there’s a lot of competition fighting for a rank on the first page. By focusing on the long-tail keywords that most companies ignore, you’ll have a lot less competition on your way up in ranks.
In order to use long-tail keywords, you’ll need to do your research and find the ones that are most relevant to you. You can use Google’s Keyword Planner or a free tool like Long Tail Generator to generate long-tail keywords. These tools allow you to input relevant keywords and it will generate long-tail keywords that you can use in your content strategy. One of the most important things to remember is that the long-tail keywords you choose are relevant to your website. Also, your long-tail keyword must always be a minimum of four words. Keep in mind that Google’s Keyword Planner provides an added bonus when it generates long-tail keywords. It will also tell you how many people, both locally and globally, are searching for those long-tail keywords and how much competition you’d have targeting them.
Since you are using phrases instead of just a few words, your long-tail keywords can be very specific. This means you can better plan your content strategy focusing on those keywords. Here’s an example:
If your company sells cameras and you target cameras as your keyword, you’ll have a lot of competition to get on the first page of results.
On the other hand, if you use long-tail keywords, such as, Buy Sony Rebel T5i 18 Megapixels or DSRL Canon EOS 6D 20.2 Megapixels for sale you’ll have minimum competition to get on the first page of results.
The benefit of these long-tail keywords is that you’re also targeting specifically users that are looking for your particular services or products. If you’re marketing a local business, you can even include your city in your long-tail keyword.
What Page of Google Am I On?
Before you can get your long-tail keywords ranking on the first page of Google, you’ll need to know what their current SERP (search engine results position). In order to do this, you’ll need to utilise a SERP checker, which you can often find for free online. SERP checkers allow you to put in the keyword(s) you’re targeting along with your website and find out how many people, both locally and globally, search for that particular keyword (or key phrase). The SERP checker will also tell you exactly what page on Google your website shows up on under that keyword.
How Can I Utilise the Long-Tail Keywords Effectively?
In order to utilise your long-tail keywords effectively, you’ll need to create high-quality, relevant content and optimise it. The first step to optimising your content is to write keyword-rich headlines. This is important to search engine optimisation because most Google users will read the headline on their search results and decide whether or not it’s relevant to what they are searching for.
Long-tail keywords allow you to reach customers at every stage, from awareness stage to purchase stage. Your content should reflect what your target market is searching for. Are they trying to learn more about your product? Are they searching for your prices? Do they want to compare “Apples to Apples” and how can you facilitate that? Your content can provide the answers they are looking for and allow you the opportunity to persuade them to purchase from your company. If your company provides a service, you can use long-tail keywords to target the users who are searching for those services. You can target the exact type of customer you want to service, such as, those looking for “cheaper” options, “more secure” options, or perhaps those looking for a local option.
Creating a content calendar is important. Google will always prefer newer, fresher content to older content, which is why you need to be consistent. Put together a plan that includes either blogs, articles, or landing pages that focus on the long-tail keywords. You can outsource to a writer or even hire a marketing company to do the research, planning, and writing. The important thing is to consistently release new content focusing on long-tail keywords you are targeting. You can release multiple pages of content targeting a single long-tail keyword, or multiple pages targeting various long-tail keywords. Find what works best for you and include it in your plan.
If you plan on blogging only once a month you can forget about moving up to the first page of Google anytime soon. By creating more and more high-quality content you can work your website into the first page. High-quality content should be 500 or more words, include pictures, internal links, or have embedded videos. Think quality over quantity and publish a few pieces of content per month that are focused on your target long-tail keyword. Your content must always be original, never copy someone else’s content because Google will, in turn, punish you by removing you from its search results entirely.
Should I Market My Content?
Absolutely! Post in on all of your social media channels, send it our through email newsletters, find influencers who would be willing to share it with a link back to your site, do everything you can to get prospects to view that content. You can also write articles and have them published on relevant websites and link back to your website. This allows you to reach an entirely new audience and as long as it is relevant to what your sell or what service you provide, you’ll find prospects. You may even want to consider paying to “boost” your Facebook posts or promote your LinkedIn posts to ensure that the right target market is exposed to it. Facebook and LinkedIn both provide very targeted advertising options for your posts and it will help you reach beyond those who are already following your page.
Long-tail keywords are an excellent way to tap the 70% of Google users who are searching using specific phrases. Your company can work on ranking on the first page of Google results without having to worry about competition because most companies spend most of their time, money, and effort dominating the more ambiguous keyword terms.
Do your research, create high-quality content, and market that content so that you can make your way up to the first page. Content is indeed King and your company can benefit from that. By following the advice of this post you’ll be able to find long-term keywords and use them to dominate your industry. To summarize, when creating long-tail keyword content, always remember:
Make it Relevant
Quality Over Quantity
It Must Be Original
& Market Your Content
If you remember those five things your content will always be favored by Google.