I’ve been very determined to learn more about the Long Tail as I think it’s an important concept to understand for small business owners.
WHAT IS THE LONGTAIL?
According to Wikipedia, it can be described this way
” a market with a high freedom of choice will create a certain degree of inequality by favoring the upper 20% of the items (“hits” or “head”) against the other 80% (“non-hits” or “long tail”). This is known as the Pareto principle or 80–20 rule.”
Your business website needs to have some very general terms on the home page. Location, hours, the industry you’re in and the like. Unfortunately, it’s probably the same information that every other company in your category also has. This means that your general information gets lumped together with everyone else’s in a very large list of search results.
In terms of long tail content for your website, I’ll use the following example to illustrate my point
Let’s say I’m in the market to purchase a new bike. The following is a list of search terms followed by the results
Bikes : 229 Million results
Road Bikes: 13.5 Million results
Reviews for road bikes: 3.4 million results
Trek Bikes: 1.5 million results
Trek Bike Shops in Calgary: 105,000 results
Now, lets say that before I buy my bike I want to know more about safe routes to ride and groups I can join…
safe cycling routes in calgary: 31,000 results
calgary cycling routes: 26,000 results
group rides in calgary for cyclists: 16,000 results
WHY THIS MATTERS
In a generic search, you’re business is likely to be lost in the abyss of results because there is so much competition for my attention. As my search gets more specific two main things happen. First, the competition for my attention decreases and second, I’ve moved further down the buying cycle and will be a better lead for your business.
For these two reasons, blogs matter. They allow your company an unbelievably easy way to add relevant content to reach out to your core audience with audio, video, photos, maps or articles. Customers can review you on your blog. Each post can be SEO optimized for the specific topic that it relates to. The more relevant content you have, the more links you’ll get directing people back to your site
I’M NOBODY, I CAN’T COMPETE.
What you need to realize is that no matter what your company sells, you are a media company. Dedicate some resources to developing your community and publishing content. The internet is the great equalizer. Your media division has the potential to reach the same scale of audience as every single major company on the planet. Want some proof? Have a look at these comparisons. Ever heard of the last two “nobody’s”?
WHAT YOU CAN DO ABOUT IT
The number of followers you have isn’t important. What I’m talking about is beyond numbers, it’s not about connecting. Think about your best customers. Think about the staff that you have. Find a way for your staff to produce content that your best customers will love. The more content they love, the more they’ll love your business.
In my own experience, I can confidently say that permitting your staff to create (with direction) will give you a competitive advantage, and invigorate & motivate your staff.
MORE LINKS THAT MAY BE HELPFUL
SEO Google Optimization – strategies to increase the hits to your website
WordPress – totally free blog site with fantastic designs, easy navigation, and amazing add-on features
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