How to Use Long Tail Keywords in Your Blog Posts Properly

how to use long tail keywords in your blog posts properly

You've chosen long-tail keywords and are ready to write a blog post. Your goal is to increase your organic traffic. But, how do you use these keywords in your post in the most effective way? In this article, I'm going to explain how to use long-tail keywords in your blog posts properly, so that you can utilize your time and effort efficiently.

In my last blog post, I talked about how to choose a topic and how to do keyword research for that topic. If you don't know how to choose long-tail keywords yet, I recommend reading that post first.

If you have a good grasp on how to choose long-tail keywords, congrats, you're ready for this step.

Related Article: Creating the perfect homepage for your blog

Using Long Tail Keywords Naturally

Long-tail keywords have one purpose: to tell google what the central point of your article is. Google wants to know what your post is about in the most efficient way possible so that it can recommend the best articles based on what users are searching for.

However, Google also looks for certain cues to how naturally your topic flows. One of those cues is the keyword density of your article.

Keyword Density

The keyword density of your article is the percentage of times your long-tail keyword appears based on the length of your article.

For instance, if you have a 500-word article, and you use your long-tail keyword a total of 5 times, you have a keyword density of 1%. The same is true if you have a 700-word article and use your long-tail keyword a total of 7 times.

Most SEO authorities recommend a keyword density of anywhere from 1% – 4%.

While you should be slightly aware of keyword density, you shouldn't dwell on it. Different length articles perform better with various keyword densities. It's difficult for anyone to define the “perfect” keyword density.

Incorporate Keywords Naturally

The one thing that you SHOULD worry about when incorporating long-tail keywords into your blog posts is this: write naturally!

Do not overuse your keywords in an effort to gain more organic traffic. This is called “keyword stuffing” and it is not only frowned upon by search engines but is actively penalized. It will be ineffective plus it could severely hurt your blog's SEO.

Use your long-tail keywords naturally throughout your post. Don't try to fit a keyword in a sentence where it obviously does not belong. And for goodness sake, don't overuse it.

Where to Use Long Tail Keywords in Your Post

There are a few places where your long-tail keywords should always appear.

The Title

Your long-tail keyword phrase should be a part of your title. Preferably, it will appear at the beginning of your title.

For example, “How to Use Long Tail Keywords” is the long tail keyword phrase that is the focus of this post. It certainly appears at the beginning of the article title.

The Description

The description of your blog post is what shows up under the title on search results. It's important that this description accurately reflects the content of your article.

Make sure that your long-tail keyword phrase is used in this description in a natural and organic way.

The Intro

Your main keyword phrase should also appear within the introduction, preferably within the first paragraph of your article.

Remember to use your long-tail keywords naturally, though. It's not the end of the world if you can't get it in the first paragraph, especially since short paragraphs have become the norm in blogging. As long as you can work it in the whole of the introduction, you should be fine.

The Body and Subheaders

As mentioned before, you should use your long-tail keyword naturally within the body of your article. Your keyword within the intro and body count toward the keyword density of your post.

You should also use your keyword phrase in the subheader if it's natural to do so. Again, don't overuse keywords in your subheaders, and use them only if it makes sense to do so.


Did you know that images are part of your search engine optimization as well? Search engines look at the data of your images to see whether or not they fit with the topic of your article.

They do this by reading file names, image titles, captions, and alt tags.

Image SEO is a topic all of its own. Yoast has an excellent article on image seo that I know you'll find helpful.

If you have lots of images on your blog already, consider using a plugin like media file renamer to optimize all of the images on your site.

My Favorite {Free} SEO Tool

If you use WordPress for your blog, I want to tell you about my favorite plugin for SEO. It makes incorporating long-tail keywords into your blog posts super simple.

Yoast SEO plugin gives you real-time stats on the SEO and readability of your posts, then gives you detailed tips and information on how to improve it.

I'm not an affiliate. I just really love this plugin and highly recommend it. I will not write blog posts without it!

yoast seo plugin screenshot

Keyword Research / SEO Series: Stay Tuned!

Subscribe below to follow along this FREE SEO and Keyword Research Series. It's basically a free e-course launching your blog toward getting more organic traffic!

<< Last week I discussed How to Do Keyword Research: A Step by Step Guide

>> Next, let's explore How to Increase Organic Traffic to Your Blog.

Vanessa Pruitt, PLMHP, MS