The basic SEO formula is quite simple – if you want lots and lots of organic traffic, you need to publish many pages on your website with each page containing at least one high-search-volume keyword. Then, all of these high search volume opportunities will bring you an increase in clicks once the keywords will rank high in Google’s SERP (search engine results page). This is generally true, so why do B2B SEO experts insist on using also low search volume keywords? Isn’t it a waste of time?
The short answer is – no, it is definitely not a waste of time. Let’s move to the long answer and understand the benefit of low-volume keywords:
How Low is Low?
As Einstein discovered, “everything is relative”, which is especially important to remember when talking about search volume. When thinking about searching for keywords with good search volumes, the “good” differs between websites and brands according to their potential audience and market.
For example, when marketing a website that is intended for a specific, small country (like Israel), then obviously the search volumes will be lower in comparison to websites targeting the whole world. And marketing Consumer Packaged Goods is entirely different from marketing a B2B product for a very specific business niche. So an average monthly search volume of 250 searches might seem too low for popular e-commerce websites but can be a great opportunity for a new niche startup.
Zeros Are Not Nothing
When using Google Keywords Planner for keyword research, some keywords may show a search volume of 0 or even just a dash (“-”). But that doesn’t necessarily mean there are no searches for these keywords. Some of these keywords may have less than 10 monthly searches, which may still mean very few searches by highly relevant users.
See the following example – the keyword “deep learning in customer analytics” has no monthly searches in the US (an average monthly volume over the last 12 months), according to Keyword Planner:
In order to check if it really has no search volume, we can try and search for this keyword on Google. Just begin to type it, and once Google automatically suggests this query we can identify it as an existing and legit search query.
*Tip – even if Google doesn’t auto-complete the query, having a magnifying glass next to the query tells us someone else already searched for it before.
In addition, if Google Search Console displays this keyword as having impressions in a certain period of time, then it means it was definitely searched for, even if Google Keyword Planner and Auto Suggest beg to differ.
Summing Up the Small Numbers
Many in the industry may suggest that SEO best practice is to target one unique set of keywords for every page (seed keyword and other variations/close terms). Sometimes there can even be up to 10 keywords targeted on a single page.
Now let’s say we have 10 keywords targeted on one page, and each of these keywords has a search volume of 10 monthly searches. Cumulatively, that means we have a potential of 100 monthly searches! Adding to the advantage of low-volume keywords, they are often long-tail and not very competitive. Therefore, there’s a better chance for good rankings and a higher CTR (Click Through Rate). Theoretically, we can see more clicks from the accumulated keyword searches than we could have seen from one keyword with 100 monthly searches. So don’t just think about each individual keyword, but examine the strength of targeting an entire family of long-tail keywords.
Better User Intent Fit
It’s tempting to use the highest-volume keywords to gain high traffic, but sometimes these keywords are too general. Let’s say, for example, that your company offers different services for small businesses, one of which is CRM. If you have a page focused on selling this CRM service, using just the “crm” keyword with 165,000 monthly searches might not bring you any traffic if you’re aren’t ranking well, and certainly not the right traffic – users searching for such a general keyword are often just trying to find the term definition or some general information about this topic. They are not necessarily interested in such services, especially not for small businesses. They will probably click on one of the informational results or just read information in the SERP snippets. The users who have a more converting intent will probably need to refine their search again anyway. The “crm services” keyword is much more B2B oriented, and will probably attract the users that are interested in purchasing this service. On the flip side, targeting the long-tail keyword “crm services for small business” is even more likely to bring more accurate organic traffic – users that are much lower in the marketing funnel and may turn into quality leads.
Rank High to Get Results
It’s not just about the user intent – low-volume long-tailed keywords are usually less competitive, and therefore are easier to rank well with. Position 1 with 20 monthly searches can often bring more traffic than position 18 with 20,000 monthly searches.
Small Traffic – Big Money
B2B businesses usually work with high price labels. Instead of selling a few t-shirts for each e-commerce customer, they may be selling the room-sized printer that produces them. So sometimes even one new client every few months can cover the quarterly business marketing budget.
To sum it up, consider using low-volume keywords, especially if you’re offering niche B2B services, or if you’re targeting a very small audience. If your website has many content pages, don’t hesitate to target multiple related long-tail keywords per page. , The more keywords on the first page, the more organic traffic your website receives. More importantly, remember that sometimes even just a few more targeted users can make a large impact.