Knowing the difference between long-tail keywords and short keywords is critical to setting up paid search ads for your small business.
If you’ve decided to spend money on a Google AdWords campaign, it’s important to understand what type of keywords will be most effective for your business. Knowing the difference between long-tail keywords and short keywords is critical. It’s also important to decide what type of words you will target.
Long-tail keywords are three or more words in length and usually more specific than shorter keywords.
“They typically signal a user with higher intent of conversion or purchase than someone searching with a broad, one- to two-word query,” he said. “Long-tail keywords are valuable to target because the user is asking more specifically for what the business is offering. The tradeoff is that search volume for these queries is usually smaller.”
For example, a short keyword search would be “plumbing repair.” Bidding for a broad, common keyword like this would be expensive due to all the competition. Plus, it might not be very effective. If someone uses this keyword, you don’t know where in the world they need plumbing repair or even what type of repair they need.
Consider instead a long-tail keyword like “emergency toilet repair Ottawa, On.” The user of this keyword has let you know exactly what service they’re looking for and where they’re located. Not only would this be an effective long-tail keyword target, it would actually be cheaper! There are fewer plumbers in Ottawa bidding for “emergency toilet repair” than there are plumbers in the world bidding for “plumbing repair.”
When deciding what type of keywords to target, we recommend focusing on keywords that have “commercial intent” first. “Look for keywords that have phrases like ‘[product] for sale’ or ‘buy [product],’”.
One easy, low-cost way to identify these types of long-tail keywords is by typing the broad “main keyword” into Google to see the suggested searches that auto-populate in the search bar. Google’s auto-populated suggestions are a good indicator of how to focus your Google AdWords campaign.