Broad vs Long Tail Keywords for Doctors

January 23, 2023

Keywords are essential for any professional who is online. These specific words or phrases give websites a better chance at being discovered by search engines and ranked higher in search results. However, using the right keywords to get noticed and engage with a wider audience is easier said than done. Understanding broad and long tail keywords and what they can do for your site is crucial for maintaining a current healthcare keyword marketing strategy.

Basics of broad keywords

Broad keywords are more generic words that apply to your industry or profession. Many websites may use broad keywords, making it more difficult for search engines to sort and rank sites.  There are advantages and disadvantages to using broad keywords across your website, and how you use keywords depends on your goals.


Broad keywords are usually only one to three words long. Any descriptions are brief and generic. Generated results from searches for these keywords can be enormous and come up with a variety of options that a patient may not be looking for.


The point of using broad keywords is to capture the online users who do not yet have a good sense of what to search for. Users may start out searching with generic terms before narrowing down to an exact product or service. This means that the number of people searching for broad keywords is greater, giving you a larger audience to attract.


The main disadvantage is that broad keywords are highly competitive. If a larger brand or practice is using the same broad keyword as you, that website will probably rank higher than yours. This can negatively impact any plan that implements SEO for doctors to increase your website traffic.

Basics of long tail keywords

long tail keyword is a more detailed phrase and usually includes four or more words that indicate a narrower search. Precise keywords like this often do not relate to the majority of searches. However, there is usually far less competition.


Four or more words for any keyword helps your site rank higher with Google when someone types in that specific phrase. Doctor keyword research can show you what long tail keywords apply to your website. To move a keyword out of the broad category and into the long tail one, add specifics like location or certain services to decrease the result options.


The audience you attract with long tail keywords is considerably smaller than that of broad ones, but you have a much greater chance of actually ranking on search engine results. You also have a better chance of growing a local patient base by using keywords with your location.


To find your website through a long tail keyword, a user must search for that exact phrase. This is less likely for many patients to do, so it may take a long time to build up an audience for one keyword.

Implement broad and long tail keywords

It can be difficult to know when to use a broad or long tail keyword in your website. Doctor Genius can help you find appropriate keywords to attract new patients. Contact us to learn more about our keyword and SEO services.   

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