SEO Tips for Non-Profits: Why targeting long-tail keywords should be part of your plan

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Optimizing your content around popular keywords can help your non-profit get found more easily and help bring in new volunteers, champions, and donors to your cause. It will also help those who use your services to easily get connected. In this post, we’ll take a look at a particular type of keywords: long-tail keywords. These highly specific keywords bring benefits that shorter, simpler terms can’t match.

Everyone can benefit from website optimization. As a non-profit, you are trying to grow your network of supporters and donors as well as making it easier for those who use your services to find you and engage with your program. The only way to do that is to make it easy for people to find you online. Keywords (and especially long-tail keywords) can help you come up in more specific searches for people who know what they want to support. Many people are looking to support you. Leveraging the power of long-tail keywords is an effective way to find them.

For your non-profit, here are three great reasons to include long-tail keywords in your content.

1. Long-Tail Keywords Face Less Competition

Long-tail keywords are highly specific terms. For example, far fewer sites are targeting the long-tail keyword “non-profit that supports grants and scholarships for women in STEM” than the simpler keyword “college scholarships.” A non-profit that is offering large STEM-based scholarships could rise to the top of search results for this long-tail keyword, rather than languishing on page 2 or 3 for the more general keyword.

2. Long-Tail Keywords Attract Volunteers and Donors, Not Browsers

A person who searches using a specific, long-tail keyphrase is usually more informed about their search. This can indicate that they have completed preliminary research, which can mean they are further along their journey to become a supporter, volunteer, or donor.

Take, for example, someone searching for the keyphrase, “dog shelter”. This general search could be associated with a person seeking to donate or volunteer, but is more likely a less specific search. Adding the term “volunteer” or “non-profit” to the search term is indicative of a more specific, support-focused search and leverages a longer-tail keyphrase. Capturing this type of searcher with content associated with the longer-tail keyphrase can be beneficial to driving support engagements. The added benefit is, when structured well, long-tail keyword topics also include the short-tail phrases (“Denver Colorado dog shelter volunteer programs” also includes the short-tail phrase, “dog shelter” – so you gain the benefits of both the short, and long-tail phrasing).

3. Long-Tail Keywords Are Great for Local Non-Profits

If you run a local non-profit, you’re probably mostly interested in bringing in traffic from people who live in or are visiting your area. Including the location of your non-profit in your long-tail keywords can help to refine your reach to a local audience. Instead of targeting your content only around general keywords, include some location-specific terms, such as “outdoor volunteer projects in Boulder, CO.” Including your location in your content can attract searchers who are looking to find a particular type of non-profit in their local area.

Long-tail keywords are an essential part of any non-profit outreach strategy. They help[ attract relevant visitors who are at a more advanced stage of the buying process and face less competition than more general terms.

To find out more about how long-tail keywords can benefit your SEO strategy, contact us today.