Keywords? Are There Different Types?

By | June 9, 2018

In the Internet marketing realm, you will hear and read a lot about the importance of “Keywords” and the fact that there are different types??? Now, I don’t know about you but, even though I have been doing this for a while I still struggle a lot to understand what SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is all about and how the different types of keywords help with rankings.

Yes, it seems that there ARE different kinds of keywords. There is the short tail, medium tail and, long tail keywords. There is also something called “LSI” (Latent Semantic Indexing) keywords and another called “Market-defining keywords” and something else called “Related Vertical Keywords”.

And there are, still others. PHEW!! I don’t know about you but, at times I find it very hard to wrap my brain around all this.


Learning About Keywords

As confusing as all this can be, I have learned some things about keywords. Keywords are something that everyone uses when they do a search on the Internet. In the Google search engine, there are over 40,000 searches every second of every day which adds up to a whopping 1.2 trillion searches per year worldwide.

Every one of those searches is recorded by Google and are used to help those who are searching by directing them to websites that are using those keywords in their content.

Another fact about keywords is that if you use the right keywords and place them in your title and somewhere in the first few sentences of your particular post, you have a better chance of attracting that traffic to your website. You can also use variations of the focus keyword phrase in other parts of your post by using words like “How” and “Why” and “What”.

Another thing I would like to mention here is, that the use of keywords in your content has to be natural like they belong there. You don’t want them to stand out because Google and other search engines will recognize this as “Keyword Stuffing” and you could be penalized for using them this way.

So, without any further rambling on my part, what do you say we get a handle on this keyword thing so we can rock our content. Well…at least do a better job which will get results.

How Many Kinds of Keywords are there?

As I mentioned earlier, there seem to be several types of keywords that are used for different purposes. They are:

  • Short tail,
  • Medium tail,
  • Long tail keywords
  • LSI (Latent Semantic Indexing) keywords and another called
  • Market-defining keywords and something else called
  • Related Vertical Keywords
  • Geo-targeted keywords

Just to name a few. So, Let’s have a closer look at some of these.


Short Tail Keywords

Short tail keywords are usually just single words like hockey, food, books, shoes. These words are too broad, and the person using them shouldn’t expect much when they type words like these into Google. This is because they are not specific, they cover broad subjects and should only be used in searches with three or more words. Single word searches can work from time to time but I think this approach should be ignored or use them together with other words that make sense.


Medium Tail Keywords

Medium tail Keywords are short phrases of about three or four words. An example would be “Hockey gear for beginners” or “Shoes for walking”. More words mean a more specific search and in this way you narrow down the results and draw more traffic to your site. This is definitely a better option than using single keywords in your content.


Long Tail Keywords

Long Tail Keywords are around 5 to 7 words long, something along the lines of “How do I improve my slapshot” or “what are the best shoes for walking”.

These terms get lower amounts of searches but are very specific. Some people don’t want to waste time looking for something that will help with their specific need so they try to narrow it down with more specific phrases. We can use phrases like these as a way to attract those with specific needs.


LSI (Latent Semantic Indexing) keywords

LSI (as the title states) stands for “latent semantic indexing”. Basically, it’s a method that search engines like Google and Bing, as well as others, use that compares different terms and concepts and the relationships between them. These are basically your primary or focus keywords, like the title of your post for instance. They help search engines understand the gist and direction of the content you are writing.

The title is what you build your post around and so, should be composed of your main keywords. The title of this post

Use Words Like What, How, Why

is a good example. These “Focus” keywords should also be included in the first two or three sentences of your post.

So, What is the best way to find these “LSI” keywords? Well. There are several ways to do this but I won’t list them all here. I will, however, give you two of the best ways.

1. The first, maybe the easiest way, is to use the search engines themselves. When you type in your keyword(s) you will not only get a selection of possibilities at the top just under the search bar but, after you have chosen one of those options, scroll to the bottom of the page and you will find a list of other phrases related to your search that others are looking for. Check out the example below.

2. Another source I use and is an excellent keyword research tool is JAAXY. Just punch in your keywords and you will get a long list of related and similar keyword phrases.  You can check out my review on Jaaxy here.


Final Remarks:

I hope you have found this post to be helpful to you in helping you understand the similarities and differences between the kinds of keywords and how they are used in our content.

One thing to remember is that the use of keywords in your content has to be natural like they belong there. You don’t want them to stand out because Google and other search engines will recognize this as “Keyword Stuffing” and you could be penalized for using them this way.

Understanding this side of SEO will, I think, help you achieve better ranking results and with better ranking results will come more traffic.

As always, If you have any questions or comments, about anything here, please leave them in the comment section below. Tell me about your successes in SEO and keyword research.

I love to hear from those who visit my website. I promise that I will respond within a day or two.

In the meantime, I wish you much success and encourage you to,

Keep Moving Forward,



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