Branded query optimization for SEO
Before jumping in to optimize for non-brand queries, columnist Clay Cazier reminds us to do what many paid search marketers already do: maximize our visibility for branded queries.
In SEO, our daily job is to spot opportunities and capture them. This is often achieved through technical improvements, page optimization and content development and distribution. The leading edge of our success is often judged by rankings achieved — specifically, rankings achieved for non-brand phrases.
In today’s post, I’d like to highlight a valuable element of SEO that many marketers seem to overlook: SEO activities around branded queries.
What we are talking about
The first simple task is to define the queries we’re interested in optimizing. Branded keywords are any that — you guessed it — contain the brand’s name. For example, if the brand is Brandlicious, Inc., branded queries would include someone typing in:
- brand plus queries (e.g., “brandlicious + keyword“)
- any proprietary product name or service offered by the brand
In contrast, non-brand queries are like:
- plumbing services
- how to tie a tie
- best software for creating a brochure
Why brand terms are important
The base supposition of this article is that brand phrases are not only worth pursuing, but worth pursuing first when tackling a new SEO job.
Why? Conventional wisdom tells us that if people are looking for our brand or products by name, it is highly likely that they are consumers who are deep in the sales funnel — more likely to buy than those searching for high-level, non-brand phrases. But is this true?