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How to find your 'Long Tails'?

Posted by Linda Chambers on Sat, Apr 30, 2011 @ 09:00 AM

Avg. Time on Site
% New Visits
Bounce Rate
1. 59 3.12 00:02:35 57.63% 32.20%
2. 6 1.00 00:00:00 0.00% 100.00%
3. 5 5.00 00:05:20 60.00% 20.00%
4. 4 1.25 00:00:29 100.00% 75.00%
5. 4 3.50 00:07:45 25.00% 50.00%
6. 4 6.75 00:13:26 50.00% 0.00%
7. 4 3.00 00:02:59 50.00% 50.00%
8. 4 5.50 00:10:04 50.00% 0.00%
9. 3 1.00 00:00:00 0.00% 100.00%
10. 3 1.00 00:06:40 66.67% 66.67%

I will give you a short lesson on how to use your Google Analytics. First is if you haven’t already go to and sign up to get your code and embed it on your web site so Google can track you. If you had someone else create your site they should have already done this so hopefully you have plenty of data to look at. But you can even start with as little as one month or one week of data.

Above you will see our data from the last week.

Here we will focus on just the top 10 key word searches to find long tails. 

We will ignore the #1 'soap warehouse', #3 'soapwarehouse' and #6 'the soap warehouse' because they had to know about us already to use these. #2 is a good one to start with 'best degreaser for Chinese'. Even though it did not get us great results it lets us know what people that are searching, are interested in, so we now have the opportunity to give it to them and improve our results and possible conversions into sales. Same thing with 'how to remove extra heavy grease from kitchen equipment' which is an extremely long 'long tail' yet there were 4 searchers that used that exact term just this week, although it could have been the same person using the same search to find us again. Since these two long tails fall in the same kitchen hood cleaning category it tells me I should look to use these terms in our permanent product description on our web site or to create a blog post or article about this subject. Or since this long tail did find us it is possible we have already done one of these things right. The way to tell? Copy the phrase into Google and see what comes up!

So when checking the first one 'best degreaser for Chinese' we do not show up on the first page but are #1 on Page 2 of about 469,000 results, so 11 out of 469,000 is not bad but we want improvement. This link goes directly to our Kitchen cleaning product page which is right where we would like some one to land vs. a home page where they would then have to click into the site to find what they would want. But here is where some detective work comes in. Go back and pull up each of the first three listings to see why they ranked higher for that long tail.

The first one brings me to a company that resells cleaning products. Not even one on the first page talks about how it will clean Chinese grease, but it might be in there some where. So nothing I can use from this site. On to the next. Which is an article entitled 'Home remedies to Remove Sticky Grease from Stoves and Kitchen Appliances'. This shows the power of a blog post and it didn't even mention the word 'Chinese' at all. Just because it used the words grease, degreaser and best so much Google gave it high relevance points that pushed it up in the ranking. Now to #3, this is one to focus on, first it is a site for a competing product 'Bonzi' hood cleaner. Pay close attention to the wording that Google found to rank it this high. We would need to improve on theirs to be able to get better results. DO NOT do what some people do and just copy ranking text so you will be right under them on the page. Remember you want to be first, not just one of others. They only mention 'Chinese grease' two times on this page, so we would need to increase on that number or match the words 'degreaser for Chinese' exactly like the searcher did for Google to rank our page higher. If we go and make these changes and then give it a week we should see our page rank improve if not pass Bonzi. But we don't just want one spot on page 1, we want more, we should also write a blog on this subject using these exact words plus ones found on our site and the Bonzi site to rank higher than the Bonzi site alone.

Let us now move to the other very long, long tail, 'how to remove extra heavy grease from kitchen equipment'. This gives us some hope, we are now seen on page one in spot #7. The article 'Home Remedies’; has moved up to #1 and Bonzi is no where to be seen even to page 5 but there are lots of other competiters around. Again shows how blog posts work especially when it uses so many of the key words multiple times. #2 links to a site called Thrifyfun. It is a Q&A site, one of many that can really add to your ranking. When you find these connected to your key words you should really think about joining them and adding your voice to the conversation. Same with forums, the more you show that you are willing to help and educate the public or with other contracors the higher your creditability climbs.

#3 is the eHow web site. Again this is a great one to join and where to post how too information. This does not mean teach a potential customer how to do your job but educate them in how to choose a contractor, how to increase their homes value - with your type of service, how to spot a problem that a professional contractor like you should be called to fix for them, etc. eHow has some good and not so good articles and videos, do a search on their site for key words that pertain to you and see what you might be able to improve upon or to comment on to clear up any incorrect information.

#4-#6 are competitors and like before when you find these, read what they say and try to improve upon it on your own site to move up your ranking.

I hope this demo helped and that you have a better idea of how to find and move up to #1 for your key word phrases.



Tags: Inbound Marketing, Google ranking, key words, long tail, analytics

Why use ‘Long Tail’ Key Words?

Posted by Linda Chambers on Fri, Apr 29, 2011 @ 10:54 AM

The term ‘long tail’ was first used by marketer Chris Anderson to describe the strategy of finding less-competitive niche market buyers vs. broader markets, that single or two word, short key words will generate. Key words are a corner stone of inbound marketing.

Here at Soap Warehouse we had some very difficult key word problems. First our major market, truck wash chemicals, can be a very large and hard market to find the type of customer we need. For example just searching the word ‘truck wash’ can yield over 400,000 results and will first mainly show only physical Truck Wash locations or businesses. So we needed to add other words.

Here is where you have to start thinking like the person that you hope is out there looking for you, your product or service.

You must choose additional words to add to the others. I tried adding the word ‘chemicals’ but that generates over 700,000 results. Seems like we were moving in the wrong direction, but with this search we can be found, as of this writing, on page 4 and have at times been on page 2 because of key word phrasing. With usually 10 web sites shown per page, being in the top 20-40 of over 700,000 results is not bad. But we did not start there. When I first started here over three years ago this same search would not find us in the first 50 pages! But you need to always strive to make at least the first page if not one of the top three of any search you can. So we started using the key phrases we wanted to be found for in our product descriptions, in our blog posts, printed articles and even in Facebook posts and Twitter tweets. The more times the phrase you want to use is connected with you and back to you the better.

For instance the words ‘best truck wash soap’ was a phrase used back in ’09 that we found was used to find our web site. We learned this from checking our Google analytics for all the key words and phrase that where recorded as bringing someone to our site. When I first checked that phrase in Google we did not show up at all on the first 5 pages so I stopped looking and I did not have any idea how that first person got to us but that was fine. They used a phrase I was sure others where probably using or would use in the future and I wanted to improve our ranking. So I wrote a blog post and an article using that phrase. We shot up to page one almost over night. Since then we have used that phrase in forum posts, and other ways to keep us on the first page. At this writing we are #2 and #5 plus have two other mentions on page one using a combination of these words even though they are not in that exact order. And these posts are not saying we have the best truck wash soaps, which can be seen as boasting or as blowing smoke at a potential buyer, but instead they are telling a potential customer what they should be looking for to find the ‘best truck wash soap’, which hopefully will bring them to check out our web site and try one of our products.

You must first give potential new customers information they want or would like to have before you try to sell them. Most people are turned off by a strong, in your face, use me attitude. Most people want to gather information, learn for themselves and make informed decisions to choose you, your service or product on their own with out feeling pushed into it.

Now what about specific products? Here we also had an issue. Over 17 years ago long before the internet our most popular truck wash was named ‘Brown Derby’ due to its color I guess, I have no idea I was not there, nor would I have chosen that for a name if it was bring introduced today. #1 because the most famous ‘Brown Derby’ was a restaurant in Los Angeles, CA and now is a restaurant in Disney World and other less known locations across the country. So when I first came here if you put in the words ‘Brown Derby’ in Google you came up with pages and pages of listings for articles about the old ‘Brown Derby’ restaurant, their famous ‘Cobb’ salad, ‘Brown Derby’ deserts, Disney World reviews and just about anything else including head wear, but not our ‘Brown Derby’ truck wash. In fact the first mention of ‘Brown Derby’ at all was a link I found to a forum post from back in ’05 that had copied a product description of another product that was mentioned as like ‘Brown Derby’ in it. Not what we wanted.

So when we first changed our web site we included additional words to the ‘Brown Derby’ to help distinguish and target those trying to find our product. Words like ‘brown truck wash’,’ brown soap’, brown derby truck wash etc. This pushed us up into the first page. And even though we are as of this printing sitting at the top spot on page one for ‘brown truck soap’ we are not there for that exact phrase, that is actually held by another companies product in spot #3. We are in #1 out of 9,620,000 results because of our combination of these words, how many times they are used and the relevance that Google placed on our sites listing because of how they were used. Much to the dismay of the company sitting at spot #3 I am sure. See the actual page view:

brown truck soap search

This illustrates that the complete content of your site is important not just the exact key phrase. And believe it our not the #2 spot is being held be a company selling a truck shaped bar of hand soap. This is why you have to constantly be adding new content and tweaking your existing content as new long tail key word phrases are found. Even reposting a blog or tweet can place you back up on top of a search that you may have slipped down the page on.

Here are some great articles that expalins more on long tails and has some great resources;,,, and wordstream has a great tool you can use

So start researching your long tails and use them to get your self found. I will show you how in our next post.

Tags: Inbound Marketing, web marketing, key words, long tail

New Markets via Social Media Inbounding.

Posted by Linda Chambers on Fri, Apr 08, 2011 @ 10:54 AM

Finding new ways to market your business with out breaking the bank is one goal almost every small business owner wants to find. 

During this month I plan to give you some suggestions, links to resources and hard facts to try and help you reach this goal.

Social Media is the new way to reach old and potentially new customers. Inbound Marketing is the future of small business. Outbound marketing may become all but extinct in the next 10 years. It is necessary to have more than a web site these days and to try and find customers via direct mail, e-mail and other media campaigns. Customers are tuning out and avoiding traditional methods business use to use to sell their products and services. New prospects want to find you when they need you, not you find them and interupt their day. They want real value and information even before they are willing to contact you about a service you could provide for them.

As we know most web surfers will make a decision to stay on your site in less than 3 seconds and many web analyst’s are saying that it has moved down now to less than 2 seconds.

So how can you make your web site be the one a service surfer will find and then stop and take a look at?

I will give you a list of 5 key elements here and then elaborate a little for you under the list.

  1. Quality information above the fold and on the left 1/3 of the web page.
  2. An obvious offer and call to action.
  3. Examples of how to solve their problems (the reason they have searched)
  4. Include visuals (especially video)
  5. Ways to continue to be educated or engage if they want too.

With #1, it must be immediately clear to the viewer that they have found a site that matched their search no mater what it was; example seeing a house being washed for house washing, a painter painting a room for a paint company, etc.

Your business name that corresponds with the work you do: Bill’s Pressure Washing and House Cleaning. You can even use multiple names and have multiple sites if your work is strongly divided, such as All Kitchen Hood Cleaning and Bill’s Pressure Washing. You can still use one phone, just have two separate numbers that are forwarded to a single phone, most phones now will let you know where the number was forwarded from so you will know how to answer the call.

Or you may need to have multiple landing pages added to your web site, designed toward each part of work that you cover. It no longer smart to have just one main page of your web site listing everything you do. You must have that plus a page for your deck cleaning and repair, roof washing and gutter cleaning, house washing, concrete cleaning, Christmas light decorating... any job you do can have its own page which in turn can all link back to one contact entry page.

And with so many new searchers using their phones, iPads and other smaller screen devices you will need to revise your pages to give those viewers information in the way they will see it, only the left top 1/3 of the page.

Ok on to point #2. Now that your surfer has stopped you need to grab them with an offer and call to action. Do you offer same day free estimates? Free gutter cleaning with new roof cleaning? 20 sq ft free concrete cleaning with each 100 ft cleaned?

What ever the offer is, make it stand out, be clear and then have an obvious button to click on for them to take action with. I could write a complete blog just about how to do this, and I will, but for now just know this is what needs to happen to get the contact.

Point #3, to be able to give examples of how you can solve their problem, you first need to know what that problem is! This is where creating pages within your web site with Meta tags and key words to specific words and long tail phrases people to search are become very important. You want some one that searches for “lowest priced house washing in Fulton county” to find your page on house washing, not to be taken to someone else’s page or even to your web site to a page about deck washing or roof cleaning, even though you may do all three, that surfer will have clicked off your site before you can blink. I will expand on this in a future blog post.

#4 - visuals. Visuals are becoming more and more important to surfers; they don’t want to have to read everything they want to know, they want to see it. Pictures tell the story many times much easier and faster than words can. The brain can process pictures over 10 times faster than when reading information that the picture is showing. For example:

C  Documents and Settings Dan Kidd My Documents My Pictures RustRemoverPhotos Before (Small) resized 600C  Documents and Settings Dan Kidd My Documents My Pictures RustRemoverPhotos After (Small) resized 600

These Before and After photos of removing rust from a concrete patio is understood much faster than reading the statements. “We can clean your concrete patio, walk way or drive way from rust, dirt, oil, and tire marks.” or “We can remove rust caused by patio furniture, so on and so forth.” Not that you should not still make the statement, but understand that people scan information, especially text and photos catch the eye. Videos are even better. You can improve the time spent on your site tremendously, sometimes by more than 20% with video. For example if your average page view is currently 6 seconds and you add even one 1 minute video, when it is watched you have increased your view time over 10%. Have multiple videos available that are shorter like 20-30 seconds and you will increase the number of videos a single person will be willing to watch and you can reach view rates of 20-40% higher than your starting 6% rate. Be sure to state near the video how long each one is to increase the chance of even the first view. People will not click on videos they feel are too evolved or will abandon one once it starts if it is moving too slowly or does not start to answer their problem or question.

Lastly give your surfer the option to learn more and engage with you in the future. Offer them newsletters, future discounts if they leave you their email, links to other information they may want to learn about, etc. These are opportunities to be able to contact these people in the future even if they did not click over and fill out your free estimate or contact form. They may just be price shopping and would like the opportunity to try you later if you sent them a discount offer and would be willing to just leave you their email address but not their name, so don’t require it.

I know this has been a little long but I hope you will come back and view the follow up posts that we will have. To be sure you are included, you can join our e-mail list, at the top right of this page, and you will receive newsletters or you can go and like our Facebook page's or subcribe to this blog and you will know when new posts are added. You can even follow us on Twitter. All buttons are at the top of this blog page. Thanks for reading.

Tags: Inbound Marketing, marketing, Social Media

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