Why Using Longtail Keywords with Low Search Volume Is Powerful

Posted on in Blog

It may seem counterintuitive to target a keyword with only 10 to 150 searches per month on a national level. Your leadership or digital team has probably asked questions like, “What is a good keyword search volume?” But really, any longtail, low-volume keyword can pack an intense punch when it’s ultra-relevant to your audience and you wield it strategically.

The benefits of longtail keywords are immense from an SEO perspective:

  1. Conversion and quality traffic potential. When targeting keywords with lower search volume, the search intent you’re speaking to is very specific – and in many cases, the user is further down the sales funnel. By using this tactic, you’re more likely to answer a user’s exact question and therefore increase clickthrough from the SERP and on-page engagement, in turn elevating brand authority and increasing conversions.
  2. Zero-click SERP survival. As the SERP evolves, it is displaying more SERP features like featured snippets, the knowledge panel, voice search answers, and “people also ask” results for longer-tail, more-specific queries. It’s very important for blog, resource, and evergreen content to appear in these areas, as more than 60% of searches now result in no clicks. If a user doesn’t click to your site but you have a featured snippet, you still get the positive brand impression, which gives your brand a leg up over the competition when it comes to future sales.
  3. Ranking potential for keyword targets. Longtail keywords are usually less competitive, so the SERP is less volatile for ranking. At the same time, they account for 70% of searches!
  4. Ranking potential for keyword variants. We recommend never just choosing one keyword to target on a blog. Quality content targets a juicy group of related keywords, some longtail and some “chunk middle.” This provides the opportunity to not only rank for all these different terms (which have a high combined monthly search volume) but to also rank for hundreds of variants with search volume. This creates tremendous potential for winning SERP features like the “people also ask” panel and featured snippets.
  5. Link strategy. Blog and resource content based on longtail keywords are perfect for building robust internal and external linking on a website. Because the queries are so specific, the content can be linked to a more general “parent” topic on another blog or evergreen page.  
  6. Natural language and voice search. Searches are becoming longer and more specific as technology advances. It pays to have keywords that match those natural language searches. Voice searches, for example, are typically longer and more conversational in their wording. Voice search answers are pulled directly from featured snippets in search results.
  7. Content diversification. It’s important to avoid targeting the same keywords on several pages, as search engines may not understand the difference between the pages and therefore devalue them in the search algorithm. You wouldn’t want your company’s content competing against itself.

For example, if you’re a carpet-cleaning and floor-cleaning company, you shouldn’t create a “floor cleaning” blog and a “floor cleaning” service page that directly target the same keywords. Longtail keywords will allow you to answer the many specific questions your audience has about floors and floor-cleaning—and loosely related topics—without cannibalizing your core service content.  

These reasons, and more, are why SEO legends like Neil Patel call longtail keywords the “holy grail of SEO.” Keywords with low search volume should not be overlooked in an SEO strategy.

Want to know more about how Oneupweb helps our partners survive in the zero-click SERP?

How to Use Longtail Keywords Strategically

So, you know that keywords with low search volume should not be overlooked in a SEO strategy, but you’re wondering how to actually implement longtail keywords in your content marketing plan.  

Here are just a few tips for what to do with low-search-volume keywords that have high relevancy to your audience:

  • During your SEO content planning process, select groups of related longtail keywords to target on blog and resource content. If you do this right and avoid keyword cannibalization between pages, you’ll increase organic traffic and impressions with ease.
  • Structure your content in such a way that it’s ripe for being pulled into SERP features like featured snippets. You can track your snippet-winning progress to improve this part of your strategy. 
  • On pages where you’re targeting longtail keywords, utilize schema markup to your advantage. For example, apply FAQ schema markup on your ecommerce product page to increase your SERP representation. 
  • Complement your written content with multimedia, such as video, to differentiate your content from competitors’ content and take up more space in search results for those longtail keywords.
  • Use these keywords in awareness-focused paid media campaigns, such as those with a landing page that offers a specific resource download.
  • Use longtail keyword research to generate concepts for creative social media content, such as infographics and short-form video.

Will We Ever Run Out of Longtail Keywords to Target?

Will toddlers ever stop saying “why”? Will your dog ever run out of places to sniff? No. We simply won’t run out of longtail keywords to target because curiosity is human nature. Humans ask endless questions. Continual keyword research will prove that point. And it’s a beautiful thing.

So, yeah, Oneupweb gets a little emotional about keywords. If you need a team to help you realize all your website’s untapped potential—from an SEO angle as well as a paid media angle—we would love to lend a hand. Reach out to us here or call (231) 922-9977 to chat about your ideas and goals. 

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