Eye catching differences between Long Tail and Short Tail Keyword

Can you answer what has widened the difference between long tail and short tail keyword? The gap between the two was not that much before but over time, things have turned in favour of long tail keywords.  Let us explore the reasons behind.

Today, content writing is evolving like never before in the wake of one algorithmic updates after another released by Google to sort out issues that plague the industry. Of all updates doled out till date by Googles, Humming bird update has been exceptional as Google has redefined the way of writing content for the web.

Long tail vs short tail keywords

And that too in a manner which was a far departure from the trend usually witnessed in early days of searching business. From that time onwards, Google has come a long way.


Long Tail Keywords differ from short tail keywords in that while the latter consists of one, two or three word keywords, the former is made of four or more words.

HIGH COMPETITION Short Tails have high competition.  There are a large number of sites waiting to rank for these keywords.  That discourages webmasters from trying to rank for these keywords.  Only sites with high domain authority can rank in the first two pages of Google result pages.

On the other hand, Long Tail Keywords are easier to rank for.  This is because these keywords do not face that sort of fierce competition as short tail ones.  Sites with very low DA can appear in the first two SERPs using them.

In other words, high competition means high keyword difficulty and low keyword competition means low keyword difficulty.

BETTER USER EXPERIENCE  Searchers can’t get the desired result when they search with one word or two word queries.  Onliners use long tail keywords in their search queries to get the desired result.  This is because search intent can be best expressed through long tail word phrases.  Also, today’s search engines  gauge three or more queries semantically.

They parse the whole phrases and accordingly respond to them.

So, webmasters, marketers using long tail in their content will get the targeted traffic which is likely to have a very high conversion rate.  Short tails fail to do so.  This is the basic difference between long tail and short tail keyword.

BETTER READER ENGAGEMENT  You can ensure better reader engagement in your blogs using long tail keywords.  Because long tail keywords help webmasters delve deeper into the core of any subject matter.  You can provide quality information using them.

PAY PER CLICK  But LTKWs don’t command high PPCs or cost per click.  This is attributable to low competition for these keywords. For which LTKWs send only targeted traffic.  On the otherhand, short tail keywords dominate the scenario with high PPCs or cost per click.  As they have the potential to drive huge traffic to your site.

But, as told earlier, that is a dream far fetched.  Not all sites have the potential to rank for these keywords.  Only, sites with high domain authority can do so.  So, long tail keywords rule and reign the content writing industry.

EASY USAGE Short tail keywords are easy to use in your content.  It is difficult to use long tail keywords in your content naturally.  However, webmasters use their variants, or LSI words or through writing lengthy contents allowing themselves more space to accommodate them naturally.

PROBABILITY OF RANKING MULTIPLE KEYWORDS  When you are targeting long tail keywords in your content, there is a high chance of ranking for two to three keywords at a time.  For example, in the focus keyword – “How to avoid keyword stuffing?”, I am targeting three keywords at a time.  How to avoid keyword stuffing, avoid keyword stuffing and keyword stuffing.

LTKWs DOMINATE SEARCHING SCENARIO Almost 70% of the search queries originate in the Long Tail form.  This reflects the usefulness of these keywords in getting the desired results to the end users.


You can now clearly understand why long tail keywords are preferred most across the blogosphere.  These keywords have low keyword difficulty, drive specific traffic to your site, have high conversion rate and are easy to rank for.  They may not command high PPC rates but their high convertibility rate is what makes them better than their short tail cousins.

But I repeat that it was one algorithmic change from Google that slowly and surely widened the difference between long tail and short tail keyword.  So, not wrong to say that the Humming birds hum like never before.

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