Long tail keywords have been lauded by #SEO experts over the last couple of years, as being higher-quality queries from searchers who are closer to taking action on procuring the product or service they seek. But is this still true in 2016? According to a recent article in Search Engine Watch the answer is no. Here are a few excerpts from that post:
As the use of search has evolved and #search engine optimization has become commonplace, businesses have succeeded in increasing their visibility in search results and made adjustments to be most visible for those queries they care most about.
A search engine user looking for information now often uses one of these two methods to arrive at the search results they need:
- They start with a broad search and continue to refine that search until they get to appropriately relevant results.
- They mentally refine their search, knowing the broad results will not bring what they want. So they begin with a more specific search and refine fewer times.
Now that searchers are finding it necessary to further and further refine their queries to get to the precise results that they want, I suggest that what we once called long-tail queries are now simply queries. The keywords that users now commonly rely upon are becoming so lengthy and diffuse that the distinction is lapsing into serving little function.
Thus, the term ‘long-tail’, to me, no longer exists. The once novel concept of paying attention to long-tail keyword queries is now so commonplace that it can go without being said. Long-tail keywords are now just the queries we all use to actually find what we need. Our ability to identify specific combinations of words that lead to our desired results will continue to evolve.
If we, as marketers, ditch our focus on query length and instead drive the focus toward the theme of the content, we can then start to adjust that content to make sure that what we are truly providing is the search destination that our potential clients and customers have in mind.
So what do you think? Are long tail Keywords still relevant in 2016?