SEO

What’s in a Keyword? Long-Tail, Short-Tail, Customer-Defining, And More

Keywords are the foundation of every digital marketing strategy. Without them, we wouldn’t have keyword research, optimization best practices, or all the different types of key phrases and terms that we use today. There are different types of keywords and phrases that you will use in content as you develop your digital marketing plan. Understanding them is the first step to success.

What Are Keywords?

Keywords are the words and phrases that people use to search for products, services, and answers online. Some of them are obvious, such as the use of “SEO keywords” in an article like this, while others are more obscure or less common.

  • Short-tail: These are singular keywords or key phrases that only include a few words. They are direct and they are usually the first that you’ll find when you’re doing your keyword research.
  • Long-tail: These key phrases are much longer, often consisting of five to seven words or even an entire question. Question-based keywords are popular right now as people use questions to search for answers online.

For example, “SEO services” is a short-tail keyword. “What company has the best SEO services” would be a long-tail keyword.

Customer-Defining Keywords

These keywords are usually easy to spot and even easier to come up with in your planning. These are words that define the focus of your target customers. If you have a business where you’re appealing to a specific audience, your keywords may reflect that. For example, if your business is about dog training, you may use the keywords “dog trainers” or “Chicago dog owners.”

How to Find Keywords and Phrases

This is the next question that people have. You obviously can’t go around making up your own keywords because you don’t know whether those are being searched or not. You need to utilize tools like Ahrefs and others to analyze keywords and find out what’s relevant to your business. Make sure that you look at keywords from several categories and topics that may be relevant so that you can use as many as possible.

Make sure that you use these terms sparingly. Keyword stuffing is no longer allowed, and it also looks really bad. Take the time to get to know keywords and your digital marketing strategy will soar. To learn more or get help with your keyword research and digital marketing efforts, reach out to Search SEO Chicago.

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Published by
Andrew Sansardo

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