Long Tail Keywords: What Are They Good For?

May 15, 2015 Phillip Long

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To optimize your insurance website for search engines, you focus on keywords and use them in your website content. There are two types of keywords: head keywords and long tail keywords. Head keywords are one to two words and tend to be broad. They are also hard to rank for as the competition is fierce. Long tail keywords are at least three to four words long, and used when searching for specific items. These keywords are more specific and have less competition.

For instance, a bicycle shop may target head keywords like bike, bicycle or bike shop. While they are good keywords, they are broad. They will capture the casual searcher but will be difficult to rank for. A long tail keyword phrase might be Trek Madone Bike or Drop Handle Road Bike. These are more specific keywords. There won't be as high of a search volume for these keywords, but the volume the bike shop would see would be more targeted. Also, someone that uses a more specific keywords have usually done their research and is more likely to buy.

Insurance is a bit of a different animal when it comes to long tail keywords, but still important. Some head keywords might be auto insurance, health insurance or commercial auto insurance. Now, although commercial auto insurance is three words, it is a type of insurance, which means it is not a long tail keyword. A long tail keyword for insurance may be liability limits for auto insurance or auto insurance for young drivers. These keyword phrases will have higher click through rates since they target specific information.

As a business, it's important that you use long tail keywords for your SEO. Not only is it easier to rank high for long tail keywords, the traffic you'd get would be more qualified and more likely to convert.

Which Long Tail Keywords Should I Use?
Identifying which long tail keywords you should target isn't as hard as you might think. Google Webmaster Tools shows what search queries your website showed up for. These search queries make good long tail keywords. Look for keywords that are longer than three words. Then use them in your insurance agency website content.

Another way to capture long tail keyword traffic is through strategic blogging. Keep track of questions your clients ask. More than likely if someone asks you a question on the phone, it's a good indicator they may also search for the answer online. Make a list of frequently asked questions and write detailed blog posts to answer those questions. Doing this on a weekly or biweekly basis will help broaden your website's visibility for targeted traffic.

Long tail keywords may not have the search volume that your head keywords have. But the traffic is more targeted and more likely to convert.

Do you have a tip on how to use long tail keywords? We'd love to hear it in the comments section below.

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About the Author

Phillip Long

Phillip Long serves as the primary contact point for all of ITC's search engine optimization clients. As the internet marketing product manager, he coaches and guides insurance agents throughout the SEO program, ensuring they progress smoothly. Phillip's specialties include conceptualizing marketing campaigns, SEO, and customer service. He has a bachelor’s degree in interdisciplinary studies from the University of Texas at Arlington with a focus in management and communication.

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