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SEMrush Blog

Should you target your own branded keywords?

SEMrush Blog
Should you target your own branded keywords?

Your ad campaign can feature two types of keywords: general and branded keywords. While it is common a practice to carry out paid search campaigns composed of general commercial keywords, branded keyword usage remains a controversial topic. In this post we are going to give you some adwords tips - explore this field more deeply and find out whether it is worth paying for advertising your brand name through Google.

Generally, an idea of targeting branded keywords faces opposition based on the following assumptions:

  • If an Internet user enters the branded keyword into the search field they will come to my website. This could be done through organic listings with fewer expenses on my side.
  • People who are using my brand name to find the website are repeat customers, while the main purpose of adwords campaign management is to acquire new clients.
  • In the case of branded keywords, both channels - organic listing and paid search- will yield the same results, the difference is only the cost.
  • Money spent on marketing websites for branded keywords can be alternatively with greater profit.

These assumptions are only partly true, and to let you have the full information at your disposal, let’s look at the positive sides of branded keywords usage in paid search campaigns.

More room for tests: as you know, in PPC campaigns, optimum keyword selection requires trying different variants and finding the most successfully converting one. When it comes to branded keywords, it is comparatively safer to experiment with them. Since people visiting your site through branded keywords are more determined to buy products or services on your site, it is less probable that a change of a path, landing page or anything similar would distract them from making the purchase.

No lost opportunities: it is important to always keep in mind that your competitors can make use of your branded keywords by incorporating them in their marketing campaign, which may result not only in losing your customer, but in gaining negative brand experience as well. By targeting branded keywords in your campaign, you increase the exposure of your site in search results and boost the chances of capturing attention of your hard earned clients.

Economically reasonable: cost per click for branded keywords are much lower than many of the commercial keywords you are striving to be shown for. What is more, branded keywords are commonplace among your niche competitors, and the traffic coming from these search queries are split between all of them, while branded traffic will more or less fully flow to your site, unless your competitors incorporate your branded keywords too. So, watch out for this and don’t give them such opportunity.

Higher ROI: it helps conversion optimization - converting site visitors into the buyers is not an easy task, the bounce rate is still high even if they come through closely related to your site business commercial keywords. Branded terms imply that site visitors are much clearer on what they are looking for, and conversions for such visits are generally greater. Coupled with low cost per click rate, branded keyword targeting tactics can turn out to be very financially beneficial.

Greater brand exposure: with your site pages displayed in the search results, both in organic listing and in ads, you take up more space in the search results, which ensures the user will click on your site and will not be distracted by results from review sites, catalogues, news feeds or Wikipedia.

Builds up your brand trust: you can test this yourself; which company site impresses you more – the ones with results only shown in organic listings, or the ones which are displayed in organic listings and in ad sections as well? Most likely, the second one. Users tend to trust more easily recognizable companies and brands, which increases the chances they will click on your link and come to your site.

Marketing flexibility: a well-known advantage of PPC campaigns over promotion in organic search results is the ability to quickly alter and customize the campaign and keywords when your site has new offers, runs temporarily deals, etc. In SEO, if you make any changes to your site, you need time to have this reflected in the search engine results. Through ads, you can inform your potential customer about anything easily and quickly.

How to find the right keyword combination for an ad

If you have decided to incorporate branded keywords in your advertising campaign, it is time to determine the right word terms they should be composed of. To make this task simple, we advise you to use SEMrush keyword research software, which works equally well for organic and adwords keywords, and has some extra options to help you decide on the right word combination.

See this in action: Let’s say you want to use the GPS technology brand name “Garmin.” You go to the search field and type this word. The program detects that it is a keyword (not a site) and automatically takes you to the Overview block under the Keyword Research section.

There you will see the Keyword summary for this term, its cost per click distribution between the countries, and trends, showing the tendency of the keywords usage. More statistical data is placed below in two tables, named Phrase match report and Related keywords report. The latter suggests any keyword ideas related to the Garmin topic as a whole, so we need to look at the first one - Phrase match report – as each word combination on the list features the Garmin keyword.

Click the Full Report button and get the full view of the table. There you will find keyword ideas in the first column, monthly search volume for the term, cost per click for such item, level of competition estimated by SEMrush, etc. The columns we have just mentioned should be of prime interest for you, because, based on information they contain, you should evaluate each keyword idea.

The general guideline here is to find a happy medium in terms of search volume and click price. The ideal keyword for you to use in an adwords campaign should have a satisfactory level of monthly searches and affordable cost (even though we have just said that branded keywords are cheaper, we still should to keep everything economically reasonable). To achieve this, you can sort the data in different ways - descending and ascending order - by clicking little arrows in the column headings.

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