The role of branded and non-branded keywords for your SEO campaign

by Shannon Ash
Mon, 11/05/2020 - 11:49

The face of search has evolved alongside (nearly) every digital buzzword. 

Everyone loves to hate search engine optimisation (SEO) – we know this – except for specialists themselves. And while it can be frustrating for business owners, not knowing when your SEO efforts will deliver measurable results, the long-term investment will rationalise any search campaign spend. 

Considering that 3.5 billion searches are conducted each day on Google alone, marketers cannot afford to ignore search marketing. The purpose of this channel has always remained consistent: to help brands grow, organically. And together with content, it forms the backbone of your content marketing success. 

Google’s requirements for SEO success 

Fortunately, Google has been good to digital marketing agencies like us – those who follow Google’s Best Practices Guidelines to help clients win in such a competitive sphere. We combine a blended approach to branded and non-branded keywords, targeting users at different stages of the sales funnel. 

Branded versus non-branded search terms

Branded keywords can be identified as keywords that are specifically used consumer products and services that you already know and trust. Generally speaking, branded searches are likely to gain more traffic because a consumer already has a brand in mind, and is in a different stage of the purchasing process. Non-branded queries, on the other hand, are the fun ones. They’re at the very top of the funnel. Essentially, consumers know what their problem is but haven't decided on a provider. 

Web traffic can be achieved through a handful of SEO implementations – especially through technical SEO and onsite optimisation. Creating a list of relevant branded and non-branded keywords will enable you to grow your search traffic and, ultimately, have a positive impact on reaching more customers. 

Before we dive into the benefits of merging branded keywords and non-branded keywords, it’s important to note that when it comes to search, there is no one-size-fits-all. By sending Google the right contextual signals, our technical SEO specialists at Rogerwilco have helped hundreds of local and international businesses experience growth, create authority, attain first-page rankings and get more paying customers. Google’s BERT has truly helped with this. BERT has made it easier to create better, user-centric content and allows SEO specialists to use semantics and keywords naturally. Contextual signals can be anything from including a keyword in a page’s URL, relevant headings and subtitles, optimised meta titles and descriptions, internal links with description anchor texts and more. 

Here’s how to benefit from unbranded search

  • Research data, and optimise for non-branded keywords

Business owners should not disregard the need to optimise for both non-branded and branded keywords. These two, entirely separate, groups of keywords lean on each other to create awareness for your customers. When you put together traditional keywords for an SEO and content campaign, make sure you have analysed your business’s services in a detailed manner to ensure that the keywords chosen are relevant to your brand in every possible way. During this process, ask SEO specialists the right questions: what customers would, potentially be searching for, and how these searches will correlate with your brand’s offerings and lead them to your page. If your business appears on any local, third-party sites, consider those queries as credible keyword options for your next SEO campaign. 

  • Manage your Google My Business listings 

Invest in local SEO tactics to make it easier for searching customers to find your business’s offerings when they search for a term with local intent. Use contextually relevant keywords to support real-time intent. Once a customer can find the answers they’re looking for through their search, and your business, customers will start seeing you as an accurate source. Be sure to keep your Google My Business information updated, for example, your address, operating hours, etc. Rogerwilco’s performance team will happily assist with this task so that you can focus on other responsibilities. 

  • Use branded keywords to generate repeat business  

Customers who choose to search using branded keywords already know what they want. They’re in a position where they’re much closer to actioning their purchase than someone who arrives on your website through a non-branded search. To retain existing customers and ensure these customers become your loyal, raving fans, you will need to prioritise both non-branded and branded keywords in your organic and paid efforts. Consult with an agency who can help you secure, and improve your site by creating a Google-friendly site. Once Google picks up the signals you’re sending it, you are providing the details needed to rank and establish an authoritative presence on your web pages. 

Final thoughts

It’s fair to say that neither of these keywords groups should be neglected in organic search campaigns. Branded and non-branded keywords both play a role in different stages of the customer journey. A blended approach can massively benefit your content marketing results as a whole; in both paid PPC campaigns and organic search performance. 

With so much competition online, it’s recommended that you use a blended approach to maximise returns. Contact Rogerwilco to speak to a specialist who can help your website look its best in Google.

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