Every day, more and more people are starting to advertise with Google Ads. Not to mention the constantly increasing budgets from the companies that have been doing this forever.
Finding keywords is not that hard. Finding the ones that convert that’s the challenge. You’re always on the lookout for tactics or hacks that can make your life easier.
One of those tactics is bidding on long-tail keywords in your Google Ads account. Long tail keywords are just longer and more specific keyword phrases. When people need something specific, they tend to use longer phrases in their search. Hence they might be better at converting.
In this post, I will delve into the importance of long-tail keywords, why they’re essential for Google Ads success, and how to effectively implement them in your campaigns.
Table of Contents
What are long tail keywords?
Long tail keywords are longer, more specific phrases that people use when they search for something online. They are called “long tail” because they make up the “tail end” of the distribution of search queries. In other words, while a small number of very popular keywords get searched for a lot (the “head” of the distribution), the majority of search queries are for less popular, more specific keywords (the “tail”).
Let’s look at the example: say you have an e-commerce store that sells t-shirts. Some of the most popular keywords might be “t-shirts online,” or just “t-shirts,”. These keywords are quite general. But if you analyze the data, you’ll find that there are a lot of more specific long tail keywords that people use when they search for t-shirts. For example, “women’s tennis t-shirts,” “black gym t-shirts for men,” and etc. These long-tail keywords are more specific and less competitive than the broad, popular keywords, but they are a lot more relevant to your business.
Don’t worry that those keywords are less popular, meaning less people search for them. It’s not about the search volume with long-tail keywords, it’s about intent. There might be less people searching for these keywords, but their intent to make an action (purchase) is a lot higher.
The Importance of Long Tail Keywords
Let’s look at exactly why long-tail keywords worth their share in gold.
High Conversion Rates
The primary advantage of using long tail keywords in your Google Ads campaigns is their high conversion rate. Because these keywords are more specific, they tend to attract users who have a clear intent and are further down the sales funnel. These searchers know what they’re looking for and are more likely to convert into paying customers or leads when they find it.
Lower Cost Per Click (CPC)
Long tail keywords usually have lower search volume, which means less competition for ad placements. This can result in lower cost per click (CPC) rates, allowing you to achieve a better ROI for your ad spend. In addition, these keywords often have higher Quality Scores due to their relevance, which can further reduce your CPC and improve ad performance.
Long tail keywords drive more targeted traffic to your website. Since these search queries are more specific, users who click on your ads are more likely to be interested in your products or services. This not only leads to higher conversion rates but also provides a better user experience for your website visitors.
As I mentioned earlier, long tail keywords typically have less competition because they are more specific and have lower search volume. This means that fewer advertisers are bidding on these keywords, making it easier for your ads to achieve higher positions and visibility in search results. This can lead to increased click-through rates (CTR) and improved ad performance.
While Google Ads and SEO are separate disciplines, using long tail keywords in your paid advertising campaigns can have a positive impact on your organic search rankings. As your website attracts more targeted traffic, your pages are likely to generate more social shares, backlinks, and other signals that contribute to higher search engine rankings.
How to find long tail keywords
Now we know that having long tail keywords in your account can be very beneficial to your business. When creating your campaigns, you should be able to come up with long tail keywords if you’re familiar with your business. I think anyone can come up with phrases that are specific. The question is, do other people search for them.
This are where a bunch of tools can help you out.
Use keyword research tools: There are a lot of keyword research tools available that can help you find long tail keywords. Google’s Keyword Planner is a popular choice. And if you’re doing Google Ads, it’s right there in your account. I’ve also wrote a post about how to use Google keywords planner. But there are also paid tools like Ahrefs and SEMrush that can provide more detailed data. Here’s a screenshot from Google keywords planner. As you can see there are a lot of keywords around “t-shirt”, some you might never though about.
Look at your Search Console: This is where you see your organic traffic along with impressions and clicks. You can connect it to Google Analytics and view the report there. I would advice to look at the Search Console as GA does not show impression of the keywords your website was shown. So you will get more insights. Here’s mine screenshot. There are no one word keywords as my blog targets specific searches or people interested in narrow subject.
Consider user intent: As I mentioned before, you might come up with some keywords while creating your campaigns. There is a lot to think about when creating a good account structure. Something I talk about in my new book “Google Ads Blueprint”. But no matter how you do it, think about how else would people search for you product. What problem does your product solves? Are there variations of your product? Does it matter if it’s a local product?
Implementing Long Tail Keywords in Google Ads
Now that you understand the benefits of using long tail keywords in your Google Ads campaigns, let’s discuss how to effectively implement them. I might repeat a step or two but that’s because it is important to stay consistent.
We just talked about. Use wither free or paid tools and conduct a thorough research. You won’t all the long tail keywords, and you don’t have to. Actually, you can just start with a specific category, like “shoes” or “shirts”, whatever. Research keywords, launch campaign, optimize, move on to the next one.
One small heads up here. The tools are a great help 100%. But sometimes you need to think like a users. I mentioned that in the users intent part above. But understanding what users want from their search term is very important. I would say it’s the one of the most important things in Google Ads.
Think from the searcher’s perspective: What terms would your target audience use when searching for your products or services?
Use your industry knowledge: Identify common questions or pain points that your customers have, and incorporate these into your long tail keywords.
Analyze your competitors: This is important as you can “steal” some of the keywords without doing too much work. Look at the keywords your competitors are targeting in their Google Ads campaigns and identify any long tail opportunities they may have missed.
Organize Your Keywords
After all this work you will have a lot of keywords. Depending on your business, but it might be a dozen or few hundred. With a dozen it’s easy, especially if you decidede to focus on a specific product or service. Then most of the will be under one ad group (remember Google ads has ad groups, which contain keywords and ads).
The challenge begins when you have more than 50 keywords. You have to organize them into closely related groups, or ad groups. Because you will have to come up with ads for those keywords and select landing pages. The closely everything relates to each other the better the Quality score.
Create Compelling Ad Copy
With your long tail keywords organized into ad groups, it’s time to create compelling ad copy that speaks directly to your target audience. Your ads should incorporate the long tail keywords in the headlines and descriptions (if possible), as this increases relevance and improves your Quality Score. Make sure your ad copy is clear, concise, and highlights the unique selling points of your products or services.
Tips for writing effective ad copy:
Address the searcher’s intent: Your ad copy should reflect users intent. What do they want when searching (remember, I mentioned how important is to understand what they want?)
Use a strong call-to-action (CTA): User have to clearly understand what action you want them tot take. “Buy Now,” “Get a Free Quote,” or “Learn More.” Since it’s long tail keywords, the “Buy now” CTA is OK. But with a broader search terms I would avoid it.
Test different ad variations: Google Ads has built it testing capabilities. Use that. Experiment with different headlines, descriptions, and CTAs to find the combination that resonates best with your audience and drives the highest CTR and conversion rates.
Optimize Your Landing Pages
Getting a click is one thing, getting people to convert is a different story. Yes, they keywords you select and the ads you write help a lot in getting clicks, but not conversions. Your landing page is responsible for converting users. Just like the ad your landing page has to be relevant to your ad and keyword. This not only helps users to convert but also increases your Quality score. Here are some of the tips:
- Include the long tail keyword in the page title, headers, and body copy to increase relevance. This may not be possible always, but you could use similar phrases or synonyms. The goal here is to make the landing page texts closely related to long tail keywords.
- Make sure your landing page content aligns with the searcher’s intent. Similar thing to the above. But you always have to think about the users and what they will perceive on the landing page. Not only texts, but images as well. Furthermore, you have to convince users that you can solve their problems.
- Use clear, concise messaging and design elements that guide the user towards the desired action. Quite often mistake. Landing pages should be design with a goal in mind. Their purpose is solely to move users closer to conversion. Can they be pretty? Sure. Is it the main goal? No.
- Test different landing page variations to determine which layout, design, and messaging yield the best results. This is a lot harder as it requires testing tools and a strategy in place. So you can ignore this if you’re just starting out. But sooner or later you will hit your search term volume and will have to think about how to convert more people. And this is were A/B testing coms in handy.
Monitor and Optimize Your Campaigns
There are no campaigns in the marketing world that you set and forget. Google Ads account in general requires some love. Search campaign in particular. Once you launched your long tail keywords, you have to check how are they doing. You have to monitor performance. Just having long tail keywords in the account does not mean they will perform. At least not all of them. Make sure you regularly look at key metrics such as CTR, CPC, conversion rates, and Quality Score to identify areas for improvement.
Here’s what you should do:
Adjust your bids: Based on the performance of your keywords, consider increasing bids for high-performing keywords or decreasing bids for underperforming ones. Your can pause that are not performing. Just don’t delete them for the account.
Look at Search term report: this report shows you how people actually search when they saw your ad. Unless you have exact match for those long tile keywords, people might search a bit differently from what you have in the account. Go through the list, see if you can add some keywords to a negative list.
Expand your keyword list: The job does not end here. Continue your research and add more keywords. Especially if you started with one category. If it performs, great. Move on to the next one. If it doesn’t try ti understand why it is not performing. Not all keywords are created equally.
Long tail keywords can be a game-changer for your Google Ads campaigns. I always start by targeting more specific and less competitive keywords, this way I can get bigger wins at the start. Maybe even start driving initial revenue. Once I’m done with long tail keywords, I move on to general ones. Sometimes you might start with all the keywords you can get, but that requires a big budget.
No matter what strategy you choose, the tips and techniques mentioned above will come in handy. I use them my self and I can guarantee that you’ll be well on your way to leveraging the power of long tail keywords to transform your Google Ads performance and boost your business success.