How to Optimize Your Website for Branded Search?


Good news: people are Googling your brand.

Bad news: they get your competitor’s website instead of yours.

Showing up on top of Google search results when someone looks for your brand may seem inescapable; however, that’s not always the case. Unless your website is well optimized for branded search, it might not appear at all, and you’ll lose valuable prospects interested in your business. Worst case scenario, your competitors will take over your brand’s search queries and drive your leads to their websites.

Every single approach for website optimization is needed to improve its ranking on search engines, and branded search is one of these SEO approaches companies must consider. This article will demonstrate the difference between branded vs. non-branded search and fully explain the whole concept.

What is branded search?

Branded search is any search engine query that includes your brand name or its variations. Sometimes multiple businesses, whether they’re competitors or not, have similar brand names. However, for the search query to be branded, it must be unique and linked to one domain.

What are the benefits of optimizing for branded search?

Branded queries are sometimes called navigational queries because users who made them are looking for a specific brand. Therefore, optimizing websites for branded search is essential to show up first on Google SERP and direct online users to specific landing pages.

Branded search optimization is a powerful strategy and can help in the following:

  • Elevate your website ranking on search engines
  • Drive better traffic and higher conversion
  • Increase click-through rate (CTR)
  • Build more backlinks to your website

How to increase your branded search traffic?

More traffic, more conversion! Especially when it comes to branded search traffic, here are some steps and strategies that can help with that:

Conduct a keyword audit

Keywords are the core of SEO, and there are two types of keywords, branded and non-branded. An example might be the best way to break the ice: The branded keywords for a marketing agency called “Andava” could be Andava agency, Andava SMM, and Andava SEM. On the contrary, the non-branded keywords could be agency, SMM, and SEM.

The first step in branded search optimization is conducting a comprehensive keyword audit to find the ratio of branded vs. non-branded keywords. The Performance Report from Google Search Console is an excellent method to examine the ratio.

Do branded keyword research

After figuring out the ratio of branded vs. non-branded search, the next step would be looking for more branded keywords. There are three accessible sources to find them:

Google auto-complete

Type your brand name in the Google search bar, and you might get a list of suggestions of what people are using to look for your brand.

Google relevant searches

It’s another helpful resource at the bottom section of the Google SERP that provides a glimpse of related branded keywords.

Google search console

You can use the Queries Report by adding a filter for your brand’s name to get a list of branded keywords.

Answer branded questions

The “People Also Ask” box is a dynamic feature shown in different locations on Google SERP but usually appears at the top. PAA  will help you get insights into what your customers are looking for and provide a list of branded keywords to optimize your content. Therefore answering those questions will boost your website optimization strategy due to its many advantages:

  • Encourage customers to finish their buyer journey and make the purchase
  • Boost your brand awareness since it’ll appear in relevant search queries
  • Improve organic ranking on Google SERP
  • Over rank your competitor as they may not include PAA in their content strategy

With such significant features, you should start your PAA optimization. Here are some tips to help you begin:

  • Look for popular PAA related to your brand
  • Understand your customer search intent and query
  • Optimize your website content by embedding those branded keywords and questions
  • Add those PPA to your website knowledge base
  • Add links to drive customers to your website

Implement local SEO

Local customers are characterized by their high purchase intent, and that’s why local SEO is essential to increase brand awareness, generate revenue, drive quality traffic, and gain more online reviews from the local community. In other words, local SEO is a primary part of any successful SEO strategy.

The following statistics are enough to prove the importance of local SEO

  • 90% of consumers use Google to search for local businesses
  • 46% of Google searches are for local information
  • 72% of consumers visit the store they found on Google within five miles
  • 88% of users who use mobile search visit or call the local business within a day
  • 86% of customers use Google Maps to find local businesses or services

Considering those statistics, here are the fundamental steps for implementing local SEO:

  • Start by creating a Google My Business account
  • Link your Google My Business to multiple pages on your website, like blog posts
  • Add Google maps to the contacts page on your website
  • Audit your website content and ensure it’s localized
  • Add a testimonials page to your website and embed Google Reviews

Publish guest posts on quality websites

Guest blogging is a valuable tool to introduce your business to a broader audience. A guest post is well-written, high-quality content published on third-party websites compatible with yours, such as Reddit and Quora. The advantages of publishing guest posts are many, and to summarize them:

  • Increase brand awareness
  • Embrace business credibility
  • Drive diverse and high-quality traffic
  • Strengthen online authority
  • Generate more leads
  • Boost referral traffic
  • Increase social media followers
  • More backlinks to your website

Encourage customer reviews

Although 84% of internet users trust customer reviews as personal recommendations, positive reviews are not just a prominent part of your buyer’s journey but also play a significant role in your website’s SEO. Websites with better customer reviews are considered more trustworthy by Google.

Foster communication with customers and encourage them to publish their feedback about your business. Here are some proven methods:

  • Simply ask them for reviews and straightforwardly explain why it’s important
  • Offer some promotions or special offers for customers who leave a review
  • Use popups and follow-up emails to remind them about posting reviews
  • Make writing a review as simple as possible
  • Interact with all previous reviews, the positive and the negative ones, to prove how much you care about them

Collecting customer reviews will provide essential data about what to enhance, add, or even delete from your website. Also, understand which keywords customers use to describe your brand, service, or product, and add them to your branded keywords list.

Run display ads for brand awareness

Display ads appear on websites and social media platforms, not in the SERP like Pay Per Click (PPC). Reaching your audience through display ads expands your customer base and increases brand awareness. You can also retarget interested leads to encourage them to take the next step in your customer journey.

Bid higher on branded terms

Bid on branded keywords to reach the prospects looking for your brand. It improves the conversion of customers with high commercial intent. Moreover, not doing so opens the door wide for competitors to dominate. In other words, bidding higher on branded terms enables hooking the competitor’s leads and directing them to your website.

Monitor and measure branded search traffic

Branded keywords generate branded search traffic, and its volume is measured by the visits these keywords drive to the website. Monitoring is cost-efficient as it prevents extra spending on non-effective traffic and concentrates on organic branded traffic.

Start optimizing for branded search with Andava

At this moment, you might be thinking of heading to Google and searching for your brand. If you are not ranking at the top and want to optimize your brand search, it’s never too late, and our creative SEO experts at Andava are always ready for a new challenge. In fact, branded search optimization is only one part of our comprehensive SEO strategy.

Let’s plan for your new SERP position