Sunday, November 7, 2010

The Great Misconception of Long-Tail Keywords and SEO

The Great Misconception of Long-Tail Keywords and SEO
Author : Jill Whalen © 2010
Article :: Copyright © 2010 Jayde Online, Inc.
Source : SEO-News.Com

As I write this, I just came back from a meeting with a
potential client with a startup who wants to make sure they
bake SEO into their website from the start
( while also not making any SEO gaffes
along the way. They were referred to me from a current client
who was in similar shoes about a year ago. I love working with
startups who have a well-thought-out business model, which is
in part to create a website and business so great that it
dominates their space.

During the course of our conversation one of the many things we
discussed was the need for a "long-tail keyword strategy."
Which makes sense because part of dominating any niche is
showing up in the search results for any and all keyword phrases
that relate to the business. We talked about the usual long-tail
keyword vehicles...a resource center on the website, a blog,
etc., all of which this company was planning to implement down
the line.

After the meeting I made a quick stop at Trader Joe's for nuts
and berries for my husband (I think he's part chimpanzee!).
When I got home it was noon so I fired up my "Jill Whalen
( ," which provides me with great
lunchtime reading. The ' dailies ( ' are
cool because they provide you with all the links your Twitter
followers posted during the last 24 hours. I often use mine to
help me find good articles to submit to Sphinn
(, as well as to keep up with the latest news
in the search marketing world and beyond. As I was browsing it
today, however, I was thinking that I shouldn't be reading other
people's articles because I had a newsletter to write and no
clue what to write about! My only excuse was that perhaps I
would get inspired by something I read.

Thankfully for me (and you, faithful reader), I did! The very
first article I read gave me exactly the inspiration I needed.

The article in question was Ian Lurie's "SEO 101: Defining the
long tail
long-tail-seo-101-defined.htm) " .

If you'd like, go ahead and read it before continuing – I'll
wait. Just be sure to come back because I'm going to tell you
why Ian is wrong in his explanation of the long tail for SEO.

Let me start by saying that I have tons of respect for Ian, whom
I met this past year at a conference we were both speaking at.
He's wildly intelligent, with the dry sense of humor for which
I'm a total sucker. Of the articles he's written that I've
read, I mostly agree with him – but not always. Which of course
is part of what keeps SEO so fun and interesting...we all have
our own opinions and definitions of stuff.

With that out of the way, and with you having had enough time to
read Ian's article, here are my thoughts on SEO and long-tail
keywords. Let's start with what I do agree with in Ian's

His definition:

The Long Tail
Specific, niche search phrases, usually more than 2 words in
length, that offer a low competition, low search volume and high searcher intent.

I mostly agree with that definition, although I'd say usually
more than 3 words in length because most 3-word search queries
do not have low search volume.

And I suppose that is the crux of my disagreement. He provides 3
made-up examples of long-tail keyword phrases, but in my opinion
only 2 of them are truly long tail.

His examples revolve around socks, and he rightfully explains
why optimizing and ranking highly for the one word "socks" is
not the best SEO strategy. It will provide you with lots of
traffic to your site, but it's untargeted traffic, and
therefore less likely to convert for you. That is, the person
who comes to your site after typing the one word "socks" into
Google is less likely to buy socks from you than the person who
typed "socks with cats on them" (another of Ian's example
phrases). I definitely agree with this. And I also agree that
the phrase "socks with cats on them" is likely to be a true
long-tail keyword phrase.

Ian also uses "socks that knock my socks off" as a potential
long-tail phrase, and goes on to say that these types of
phrases, in aggregate, can provide as much traffic to a website
as the one word "socks," while providing the bulk of the
sales. Once again, I agree.

Keyword Gems as Opposed to Long-Tail Keywords

Where I start to disagree is with the third keyword phrase that
Ian uses as a long-tail keyword: "red wool socks." While he
was obviously just making up examples, "red wool socks" is
unlikely to be a long-tail phrase – it's what I call a
"keyword gem ( ."

There's a very big difference between keyword gems and
long-tail keywords. Keyword gems are those that a lot of people
use in the search engines, but they don't have as much
competition as the much more general keyword "socks." This
differs from long-tail keywords, which aren't used much in the
search engines.

Long-tail keywords – in the truest sense of what long-tail means
– are those that may get searched for only once a month, once a
quarter, or even once a year. Sometimes even just once in a
lifetime! In fact, they may never show up in most keyword
research tools as viable keywords. (Especially now that Google
has basically wiped them out of their keyword research
database...but that's a story for another day.)

You Don't Optimize for Long Tail

Because long-tail keywords are so few and far between and can't
easily be researched, you can't optimize for them – not in the
traditional SEO sense. But that's okay, and in fact, it's the
beauty of long-tail keywords. Anybody can receive highly
targeted traffic from them, regardless of your level of
knowledge of SEO! All you have to do is have content on your
website. It doesn't even have to be good content, although it
should be good if you want it to convert for you. The content
can even be user-generated, as in a forum, or in blog comments,
product reviews, or pretty much anything that puts words on your

If you have words on your pages (and your site is crawler
friendly), you will receive traffic that relates to those words
whether you mean to or not. You've likely seen this yourself if
you have a blog or articles on your website and you review your
web analytics for the keyword you're getting found under. It's
really that easy.

But that's not SEO.

And that's where I disagree with Ian.

Near the end of his article he writes:

"If you want to capitalize on the long tail, look beyond rabid
link grubbing and learn to optimize your pages. Optimized,
relevant content is what gets long tail traction."

Yes, you can look beyond the horribleness of link grubbing. But
no, you don't have to optimize your content for long-tail
traction. You simply have to write content.

Sure, you can think about and create a long-tail keyword
strategy where you determine specific themes that you want to
write about that may capture the most amount of search traffic
as well as bring in links. And that's certainly how I'll be
helping my new startup client as part of my SEO consulting.
However, when I write my newsletters I don't do it with
keywords in mind. When we have posts on our forum, we don't do
it with keywords in mind. And yet, that's where our long tail
traffic comes from--with or without a long tail strategy.

Long-Tail Visitors Do Rock

While my long-tail visitors aren't typically in the market for
SEO services at the moment, they are often looking for SEO
information and education. The articles and posts they find on
my site through their long-tail searching often entice them to
sign up for our newsletter, which is a conversion in and of
itself. And I know from my data that newsletter subscribers
(waving to you!) are, in the long run, the most apt to hire me
for SEO consulting services somewhere down the line if or when
they're in the position to do so.

But make no mistake about it – our best short-term
lead-converting traffic comes from the keyword gems that are
searched upon fairly often. These are the ones that we optimize
our sales pages for. They are the keywords that potential
clients are using that describe exactly what we offer and how
those offerings can benefit them.

When you put those two strategies together – long-tail content
designed to make a first impression and a small conversion
(newsletter sign-up) plus keyword gem optimization designed to
collect leads now – you've got yourself some mighty SEO!

This Article Written by: Jill Whalen © 2010
Copyright © 2010 – Jayde Online, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Source : SEO-News.Com , Winnipeg, MB R2M 5M3, Canada
Website Registration : SEO-News is a registered service mark of Jayde Online, Inc.

About the author:
Jill Whalen, CEO of High Rankings and co-founder of SEMNE, has
been performing SEO services since 1995. Jill is the host of the High Rankings Advisor newsletter and the High Rankings SEO forum .

Editor of i-Technology News Blog : Boonchai Thaveetermsakul

About the Editor:
Coordinator and Web Alliance of and , and Writer of several websites and blogs: i-Technology News , Neo Liners International Blog , MultiLeaves ,

Erudite Owl and OmniscienceZ .

Facebook Business Pages Demystified for Business Owners

Facebook Business Pages Demystified for Business Owners
Author : Nancy McCord © 2010
Article :: Copyright © 2010 Jayde Online, Inc.
Source : SiteProNews.Com

Facebook is so popular that business owners can simply no longer
consider it a site only appropriate for socializing and game
playing. In fact, in September 2010, Facebook surpassed Google
in regards to the amount of time users spent on their site.
Facebook states that users spend over 700 billion minutes per
month on Facebook!

With 500 million active users, Facebook is the new behemoth on
the Web. With its popularity across diverse age groups,
integrated email application, and new Bing search integration, a
Facebook user may simply no longer need to visit Google for Web
searches or log off to use an email application. They may be
able to experience the Web fully all from inside Facebook. With
more than 50% of the active users logging into Facebook every
day, according to Facebook, Facebook is now so important to your
potential customers' lives that it makes sense for you as a
business owner to have a presence where your prospects are
hanging out on a daily basis.

Let's clear up a few things that have confused business owners
about Facebook. First, a Business Page is not to be confused
with a personal profile. They are two separate entities and
offer different options and ways to interact with friends and

Are Business Pages Also Called Fan Pages?

Many of you who have been using Facebook for a while will
remember that Facebook used to call Business Pages - Fan Pages.
Additionally, it used to be that someone "fanned you." Now
they "like you." Don't get confused in thinking that a Fan
Page is a different product than a Business Page - they are one
and the same.

All Facebook Business Pages start with the set-up of a personal
Facebook profile. That's right, a personal profile! You can't
just jump to Business Page set up. The email address and name
you use for your personal profile must be one tied to a person
and not a catchall email like Remember, that
if you have an employee set up your Facebook account and the
personal profile portion for your Business Page, you don't want
to tie the new account to the employee's email address. If the
employee does so and leaves your employ, you could lose access
to your Facebook Business Page, all of your accumulated fans,
and information without recourse.

For set up, I typically recommend that one of the business
owners create a new email address specifically for Facebook.
Once you have set up the personal Facebook profile, you are
ready to get started. But, don't take time to add information
like education and other details in this special account unless
you plan on using it for your own personal use. You are just
setting up this account to have a platform to launch and access
your new Facebook Business Page.

While logged in to your new personal account, visit this link: . It will take you to the Facebook Business Page creation tool to actually create your new page.

On the right side of the creation page under the heading
the "Official Page" look for "Create a Page for a:" and then
select "local business." Enter your page name and then tick
the box next to the statement that says you are a legal
business representative and allowed to own the page. It is
important to understand that the name you choose for the title
of your Facebook Business Page will appear at the top of your
finished page.

I recommend you use proper spelling but not use hyphens or
underscores in your selected name. It used to be that you had
to enter hyphens or the spaces would show as non-HTML characters
in the page name and URL, but Facebook has grown beyond that.
For example, enter in "My Business Name" (note the proper use
of spacing and capitalization), not "My-Business-Name." This
name will appear in your new Business Page URL as well.

Once you click create, the next page you see will be your brand
new Facebook Business Page. It is that simple. Later, after
you've had 25 people "Like" your page, you will be able to
select a vanity URL, but we'll talk about that later.

Do My Personal Updates Show on My Business Page?

After you have set up your Facebook Business Page, you can
"lock down" your personal profile that was used to launch your
Business Page. To do so, just alter the privacy settings in
the personal account to not show your personal information to
others who are not "approved" friends.

When Facebook was first created many business owners including
myself, started with a Facebook personal profile for their
business. Now that Facebook has created Business Pages, you can
easily change the privacy settings on your old personal profile
to funnel your business traffic to your new Facebook Business
Page, keeping your old personal profile just for family and
close friends.

When you change the privacy settings on the personal profile
attached to your Business Page, it does not impact who can view
information about your Business Page. Conversely, if you
post pictures of your kids on your Facebook personal profile
that is the launch pad for your Business Page, and you have your
personal profile limited to "friends only", your kids' photos
will not appear on the wall of your Business Page.

Why Exactly Would a Business Owner Want a Business Page and Not Just Use a Personal Profile?

Several reasons to have a Facebook Business Page are: the
ability to contact all people who "Like" or who "Fan" you
with one click newsletter type notes, interact with
discussion questions like a forum, set up events and invite fans
to attend, and even create specialized welcome and shopping
pages. Your Business Page can almost be a mini website!

Creating Your Business Page Vanity URL

Once you have 25 people who have clicked that they "Like"
your Business Page, you can select a short easy to remember name
to promote on your website and business card. Your Business Page
goes from something like
Waldorf-MD/mccord-web/129943573719686?ref=sgm to something
like this Just visit this
link . You can have vanity URLs for both your personal account and Business Page.

It is very important to understand that once you have selected
your vanity URL you will not be able to change the name, so
select carefully.

Best Practice Tips for Keeping Your New Facebook Business Page

No one wants to be spammed, but sometimes new Business Page
owners get excited and post what seems like a constant flow of
information on their wall. It is important to understand that
what you post on your wall is posted on the wall of the people
who have clicked "Like" on your page. We encourage our
clients, when they are doing status updates themselves, to be
courteous and post about twice a day. Facebook is not Twitter
and so 5 to 10 status updates a day could get you blocked or
hidden by fans when they feel you have inundated their wall with
your daily or hourly updates.


I hope that this white paper has helped to introduce you to
Facebook Business Pages in a way that helps you to feel that you
can easily set one up and have fun doing it. If you haven't set
up your own Facebook Business Page, now's the time to consider
setting one up. Facebook is only getting more popular and is
actively seeking to woo the business community into their portal
with demographic based pay per click advertising and the new
integrated search with

This Article Written by: Nancy McCord © 2010
Copyright © 2010 – Jayde Online, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Source : SiteProNews.Com , Winnipeg, MB R2M 5M3, Canada
Website Registration : SiteProNews is a registered service mark of Jayde Online, Inc.

About the author:
Nancy McCord is the founder and President of McCord Web Services
LLC which provides blog writing services, Twitter and Facebook
status updates, and Google AdWords services. Since 2001, Nancy
McCord has developed a national reputation as an expert on
blogging and how businesses can harness the power of Web for
profit. You can visit Nancy and her firm at

If you feel that you need professional help in setting up your
page or maintaining your updates and to interact with Fans, we
ask you to consider 'our Facebook service offerings'
( . I know that you will find us responsive and affordably priced .

Editor of i-Technology News Blog : Boonchai Thaveetermsakul

About the Editor:
Coordinator and Web Alliance of and , and Writer of several websites and blogs: i-Technology News , Neo Liners International Blog , MultiLeaves , Erudite Owl and OmniscienceZ .