Saturday, December 6, 2008

Head Terms & Tail Terms Explained

Keywords and phrases are usually referred to in two different ways. Head terms and tail terms. Head terms are general short more common keywords such as "gourmet coffee" or just "coffee". Tail terms or long tail terms are of course longer in nature, such as "gourmet coffee gift basket" or "gourmet coffee whole beans". While head terms can generate more traffic if ranked well, tail terms will generate more engaged converting traffic.

Each page of content should be geared around only one or two tail terms and optimized to those searches. Days of trying to optimize around three or more keyword tail terms will get you lost in a bigger crowd as it will dilute your optimization. The Google keyword tool will help you locate these tail terms and do not be afraid to chase lower volume search words. If done in a natural way, these pages can rank and will be likely pages that create natural backlinks as well. Do not get in the trap of making a page try to rank for multiple head and tail terms. The SERPS are getting better at rewarding focused pages around one or two tail terms and doing so with out a ton of backlinks. Plain and simply, if your page promises "gourmet coffee whole beans", then deliver in the form of content and products and then direct off to even longer tail optimized pages such as "gourmet Sumatra coffee whole beans" or "gourmet Ethiopian coffee whole beans".

It has never been easier to give the SERPS and surfer exactly what they want and in turn be rewarded for it.

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