SEO Essentials: Harnessing the Power of Short-Tail and Long-Tail Keywords

To enhance your online presence and drive targeted traffic to your online shop, your site needs to effectively utilize keywords. Two important types of keywords to incorporate into your business are short-tail keywords and long-tail keywords.

SEO Essentials: Harnessing the Power of Short-Tail and Long-Tail Keywords

What are keywords?

Keywords are the words that users use when searching for your products and services. Some users will type very few words while others will be much more specific and lengthier with their search criteria. These two different search criteria can be broken down into short-tail and long-tail keywords.

Short-Tail Keywords

Short-tail keywords are short, generic terms of usually one or two words. If a user were searching for fitness advice, for example, a short-tail keyword they could use could simply be “fitness.” If they wanted to be a bit more specific, they could search for “fitness blogs.” Short-tail keywords are words that have very high search volume since they are inherent to many products. However, short-tail keywords are also highly utilized by your industry, making them highly competitive to use.

The benefits of short-tail keywords

Despite the competition surrounding short-tail keywords, they are an important asset to your SEO strategy. Short-tail keywords are great when building awareness and visibility around your company. General keywords are used by broad audiences, so using short-tail keywords allows your company to be exposed to a large audience. Short-tail keywords are a great way to expose your brand to new potential customers.

Long-Tail Keywords

Long-Tail keywords are longer, more specific phrases that are usually three words or more long. To use our fitness shopper as an example, a long-tail keyword they may search for could be “exercise routines for beginners” or “workout routines for beginners at home.” Overall, long-tail keywords are much more niche than short-tail keywords. The search volume for long-tail keywords is low, but due to their specificity, they have less competition surrounding them. This results in long-tail keywords attracting higher conversion rates.  

The benefits of long-tail keywords

While short-tail keywords expose your brand to new users, long-tail keywords are a great way to enhance your online visibility and connect with users at different stages of the buyer’s journey. Since long-tail keywords have less competition, you can use them as opportunities to become the go-to store for certain products. You can also use long-tail keywords to meet buyers where they are. Users that use long-tail keywords are often shoppers who are further along in their shopping process. They have an idea of what they want, so becoming more specific in your keywords can help guide those users to the products they are looking for.

Want to learn more?

Want to further explore keyword strategies that can boost your SEO? Listen to our latest eCommerce Made Easy Podcast where we discuss how to conduct keyword research as well as what keyword opportunities you should consider using on your site!