Conversions of Longtail Keywords are 2.5x Higher Than Head Keywords

This article will provide stats on the significance of long tail keywords versus head keywords, along with lessons learned from online case studies to help you make use of this powerful insight for your business.

If you would like an audit of your search engine optimization or social media activities, contact us to book an appointment to discuss. Here at Profitworks we offer SEO services, Email Marketing services, and Social Media services to help grow your business and increase your revenue. If you are not familiar with any of the terms referenced in this article, scroll down to the bottom of the article where you can find detailed descriptions explaining each term. 

 Conversions of Longtail keywords are 2.5x higher than Head Keywords 2


Executive Summary

 - Long tail keywords convert 2.5x higher than head keywords

 - Long tail keywords present a significant opportunity to capitalize on over 70%-80% of internet searches that are highly convertible to sales

 - Long tail keywords help you serve your customers better by providing tailored content to specific inquiries

 - Finding long tail keywords requires a sustained effort, marrying content and information architecture strategies


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4 Punches that Showcase the Power of Long Tail Keywords

Longtail keywords offer a way for businesses to connect to a focused demographic of web searches that can offer greater returns on web and content investments. Here are four key facts that showcase the power of long tail keywords.

  1. Over 70% of web search traffic is done through longtail keywords
  2. Long tail keywords trade volume for ranking potential
  3. Long tail searches are often 2.5x more effective than short keywords
  4. Websites that utilize long tail keywords move up 11 positions in search rankings

Here is a great infographic by Hittail that visualizes the points mentioned previously along with insights on how to get going with longtail keywords.


Long Tail Keyword % Of Total Web Traffic

Value Of Long Tail SEO 1


long tail percentage of search traffic


70%-80% of search traffic comes from long tail keywords. People tend to be more specific with their searches because they're looking for specific results.


Ranking Potential Of Long Tail Keywords

ranking potential long tail keywords


Value Of Long Tail SEO 2


Long tail keywords are more specific and contain more words than head keywords. While this means that they'll be searched less often it also means they're much easier to rank.


Long Tail Keyword Conversion Rates

Long-tail and Head Term conversion rates


long tail keyword conversion rates


Long tail keywords result in higher conversions because they tend to a person's specific needs. Keywords with fewer words offer a broader range of results and may not be specific enough to help a user find what they need.


Long Tail Keyword Search Engine Results Click Through Rates

Long Tail Keyword Click Through Rate By Position


long tail keyword search engine results click through rates


As you can see, the data from the two graphs is slightly different but the overall conclusion is the same. Long tail keywords result in higher search engine result click through rates. 


How To Use Long Tail Keywords

Value Of Long Tail SEO 4



How to Find Long Tail keywords

The best way to find long tail keywords is to conduct keyword research using Google keyword planner. Long tail keywords can be contextualized to your service category and geography using the following formula: {service / product} + demographic + geography. Some examples include "fencing homeowners waterloo," "car repairs for busy people Toronto," and "home renovation Kingston." The notion of finding a long tail keyword can also be misleading as the competitive environment changes continual effort must be taken to ensure you are targeting relevant keywords and discovering new or adjacent keywords.


Lessons Learned From Online Case Studieslong tail keyword case study

Here are two online case studies and their associated insights based on real applications. A summary of case studies is provided with insights gleaned for quick and action-oriented takeaways.

Case Study #1 - Issue: Multiple Keywords and Complex Site

The client had a complex number of websites and the number of keywords that we were required to rank was also extensive. One of the challenges of long tail keywords is the ability to incorporate them organically as titles or keywords. 

Lessons Learned: Hone in on the top keyword opportunities by doing analysis on the number of other web pages that have the keywords you are trying to target in their title. If there are few or no other web pages online that have your targeted keyword in the title it will be easier for you to rank high for that keyword. This provides an opportunity to edge out competitors by making better use of the content created, targeting long tail keywords in the title and body of the client web pages that other companies were not currently targeting. Adding an aggregate page for related long tail keywords also proved effective here. It is believed that this helped Google identify what each page was and how all the content was related to the same topic.


Case Study #2 - Issue: Competitive Keywords and Ambiguous Terms

The client had search terms that were extremely competitive and caused depletion of the AdWords budget, leading to low ROI despite significant invLessons 

Lessons Learned: Researching existing targeted terms helped identify which were ambiguous and significant cost drivers.  This helped narrow down which terms to remove from focus. Using AdWords keyword planner and complex queries that identified keywords with multiple focus terms helped identify a new list of relevant keywords  for the client to target instead. These long tail keywords were niche and had high conversion rates to help drive sales rather than simply generic traffic.

The full details of the case studies can be found here.


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What Is SEO (Search Engine Optimization)

If you don't know what SEO is, I will describe it here. If you already know what it is, you can skip forward to the next paragraph. SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization. SEO is the process of maximizing the number of visitors to a particular website by ensuring that the site appears high on the list of results returned by a search engine. To learn more about what SEO is, click here, or to watch a video that explains it, click here


Head Rates vs Conversion Rates

What is Social Media

Social media is websites and applications that enable users to create and share content or to participate in networking. The most common social media websites are Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, Pinterest, Google+, Tumblr, Instagram, and Flickr.

What are Head Keywords

Head keywords characterize the most volume of search terms as they are more general than long tail keywords. The are typically characterized by 2 or fewer keywords that are entered into a search engine. For example, "math help," "cleaning services," and "SEO."


What are Long Tail Keywords

Long tail keywords can be described as having 3 or more words in them to create a focused search term. Examples can include, "where to get the best hairdresser in Toronto," or "GTA home office supplies." Long tail keywords help businesses connect with a specific target market and offer greater outcomes in conversion.

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