What is a branded keyword?
A branded keyword, or a branded search, is any query via a search engine that includes the name of your company, business or brand, such as ‘Go Up’. This can include other words too, like ‘Go Up agency’ or ‘London Go Up’. Fundamentally a branded search includes your brand name as part of it.
A non-branded search is any search term that does not include your name. Following the above examples, they could be ‘SEO agency’, ‘London agency’ or ‘SEO agency London’
Branded search shows user intent
The use of your brand name in a search shows that the user already knows who you are, or has heard of you, and is looking for your company specifically. That means they want to go directly to your website, which is why you want to rank at the top of a search results page for branded search.
Is ranking for branded search easy?
Ranking for branded search can be easy, but not always. Take Coca-Cola for example. It is a large, international company, which has been around for many years. As the company and its website is well-established, it naturally appears at the top of the results page for a search for ‘coca cola’. The search results underneath the homepage include its social media accounts, news stories, and a Wikipedia entry.
The Coca-Cola brand is strong, with numerous websites talking about it, increasing the likelihood that it’ll rank first for the brand. But what if you’re a smaller company, or have a brand new website?
If you are not ranking highly for your branded search, an SEO agency can help you identify why. There could be a number of reasons behind this, which range in complexity:
- Your site isn’t indexed
- You are in competition with another brand of the same or similar name
- Your site hasn’t been properly optimised (ineffective SEO)
- You have multiple brand names
- You use an acronym for your brand name which could be used by another company or entity
- You haven’t made your brand name clear on your website
Brand monitoring can help you with branded search
Brand monitoring is a term used by marketing agencies and data tracking tools to describe mentions of your brand on the web. There are numerous tools that can help you track these mentions, providing a record for you and your team. There are also many additional ways for your in-house team or marketing agency to help improve the frequency of your brand mentions online.
Frequency of brand mentions won’t necessarily result in gaining the top spot in branded search, but it will go a long way.
Think of brand mentions and monitoring like PR, you want to get your name out to as many people as possible. Wherever users are, you want to be. Some examples of ways to boost your brand mentions are:
- Mentions with links on other websites, such as industry blogs, newsletters, newspapers, and online magazines. This can specifically use branded anchor text.
- Search Engine Business Listings. This can be Google My Business, Bing Places, or Yandex’s Yext. This should be backed up with Schema, which will tie to making your name, address, and phone number the same across all listings.
- Social media. From Twitter and Facebook to Pinterest and Instagram.
- Reviews from relevant review sites, including Yelp, TripAdvisor, and industry-specific platforms
If you are looking to improve your branded search, or want to know why you aren’t ranking at number one for your brand name, contact our SEO team today.