NOTE: HitTail has been discontinued! The review below still shares valuable, fundamental SEO concepts. But for a current – highly recommended SEO tool – check my Surfer SEO review. Like HitTail, it can also integrate with Google Search Console to highlight keyword opportunities (and more) in a similar fashion.
Keyword research takes time. Too much time! Can HitTail help? I say it can, and here’s exactly why it’s such a powerful Google keyword tool for your website!
Fresh for 2015, this HitTail review (one that I’ve been wanting to write for a while now) will show you a unique Google keyword tool that’s built for the busy ones among us. And let’s get real: who isn’t busy when growing a business online?
Content marketing, inbound marketing, social media, Twitter, Facebook, Google, Pinterest, Instagram, WordPress… there’s plenty to do. And as a content writer, if you’re blogging or writing your own sales copy; you should focus on writing rather than digging for that golden Google keyword in your keyword tool of choice.
Or maybe you don’t even have a preferred keyword tool, yet?
Either way: read on and let me introduce you to a super-simple keyword tool. It’s called HitTail. In a way, HitTail is Google keyword automation, for your business 😀 How come? Read on!
What is HitTail? What does it do?
Apart from saving you time, the primary question/objective is:
How can HitTail help you get more search traffic to your website?
HitTail is an online app + WordPress plugin that solves 3 problems familiar to most website owners and bloggers:
- HitTail answers the frequent question: “what should I write about?” by presenting you with a list of keyword opportunities
- HitTail clearly points out exactly which of these keywords you are most likely to rank well for (nice eh?)
- HitTail does the above, with almost no work on your part. The same can NOT be said for most other, often more manually oriented Google keyword tools, many of which can quickly turn into deep, dark rabbit holes, swallowing up hour upon hour of your valuable time, in much the same way as The Cookie Monster consumes cookies (or Elvis ate burgers… you get the idea)
What HitTail isn’t, is a complete content optimization WordPress plugin like Scribe by Copyblogger. What HitTail helps you with, is the keyword research part of the job. Putting the resulting keywords to good use, requires an additional plugin like aforementioned Scribe, or (heaven forbid): the Yoast SEO plugin.
By the way, HitTail complements Scribe’s own keyword research feature pretty well, speeding up the process.
Setup of the HitTail WordPress plugin
Installation and setup of HitTail is über-easy – there’s a Hittail WordPress plugin for that:) Just install the plugin, connect your site to HitTail, and boom! you’re done.
… or at least; almost. You should also connect HitTail with your Google Search Console account. Don’t have one? Shame on you! It’s free – and essential, for any website owner.
In my opinion Google Search Console is the most underrated, underestimated, undervalued SEO tool on this planet (maybe the Martians have a better one, who knows?). GSC is so simple – anyone can use it.
Heads or tails? Long or short?
HitTail gets the “Tail” of its name from “The Long Tail” – a term popularized by author (and former Wired Magazine editor) Chris Anderson. The Long Tail is a statistical observation that describes a characteristic long tail distribution of numbers.
Long tail keywords each have relatively low search volume individually, but collectively, this long tail will make up the majority of your inbound search traffic. In my case long tail keywords represent 81% of my search traffic. A perfect example of the validity of the Pareto principle, also known as 80/20.
Some of you may be thinking: “surely it’s a big chunk of work to try to rank for all of these long tail keywords?” Rest assured: it would be MUCH harder (almost impossible) for you to rank for the short tail versions of those keywords. At least in the short run.
And that’s the beauty of the long tail keyword strategy:
You start out by first targeting the long tail versions of a given keyword, for example “rap music news atlanta” and “rap music news georgia” and rank well for them. As your site gains momentum over time, you’ll, in turn, progressively rank better and better for the shorter tail version “rap music news” which obviously has much larger search volume. Who knows – in the end you might be ranking number 1 in Google for “rap music” or “music news”! But first you’ll likely have to shapeshift into Jay-Z – it’s far from easy to rank for such a generic, ultra-short tail keyword term. It’s a shorter tail than most Rottweiler’s have, and that’s short (sadly).
Suffice it to say: a long tail keyword strategy is the way forward, unless you’re a shapeshifting Rockefella freemason rap star Illuminati member;)
Keyword not provided? No problemo maestro!
Unlike most other Google keyword tools available, HitTail is basing its suggestions on the keyword data from your own website / blog.
While for example Moz Analytics’ anemic keyword opportunity tool to this day is still basing its keyword suggestions upon the very few keywords shown in Google Analytics’ keyword report, HitTail is busy shaking hands with, connecting, drinking cocktails with – and importing – the Search Queries data from your Google Search Console account.
Why’s that so awesome?
Because this data contains a gazillion more – and much meatier – Google keyword data!
Ever since we saw our keywords data dwindle as a result of Google’s “keyword not provided” swindle (yes, I couldn’t resist that rhyme, there’s a Mini-Eminem Mini-Me hidden deep inside of me)
My hunch is that HitTail’s algorithm is somewhat similar to what I’m describing in my Google Search Console trick – which, since I wrote about it, has become common SEO practice.
So… does HitTail work?
It does – if you use it! That’s the key. You still gotta write those blog posts (or pages) that targets the keywords HitTail suggests would be beneficial for you to blog/write about. But at least you’ll now know WHICH keywords it makes most sense for you to target.
And don’t worry – there will be plenty of keywords to choose from, so you won’t be locked in or forced to write about something you don’t care about. Remember: HitTail’s suggestions are based on stuff you’ve written yourself, already.
Just remember you’ll also need a content optimization plugin like Scribe, or at least Yoast SEO to help you make efficient use of HitTail’s keyword suggestions!
HitTail = a Google keyword tool for the busy ones
I’ll conclude my HitTail review with these words: HitTail is an efficient Google keyword tool, and it’s one that I’ll stick with – mainly because it saves me time (I’m that guy who can spend hours on keyword research) so I can focus on what I love: writing and sharing my thoughts with you:)
Thanks for reading! Opinions and questions welcome down there in the comments section below.
NOTE: HitTail has been discontinued! For a current, and highly recommended SEO tool: check my Surfer SEO review. Like HitTail, it can also integrate with Google Search Console to highlight keyword opportunities (and more) in a similar fashion.