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Pay-Per-Click (PPC) advertising campaigns can help improve your brand's visibility. However, it can be difficult and costly to compete with other businesses for generic keywords related to your industry.
Bidding on branded keywords can help you make the most of your PPC budget. Due to their lower Cost Per Click (CPC), relative lack of competition, and high conversion rates, these terms can make for an affordable and effective strategy.
In this post, we’ll explain what branded keywords are and why they are important. Then we’ll share five reasons to bid on them in your next PPC campaign. Let's get started!
An Introduction to Branded Keywords (And Why They Matter)
If you’re already using PPC advertising, you know the success of your campaigns hinges upon the quality of the keywords you use. They affect the audience you reach and, in turn, your Click-Through Rates (CTRs) and conversions.
Branded keywords are search terms that include the name of your business. For example, some examples for our own business would include the term “Easy Affiliate”, as well as other phrases that incorporate it, such as “Easy Affiliate plugin”.
Using branded keywords in your PPC campaigns may seem counterintuitive. After all, you're likely already generating organic traffic for these terms. Paying for them to appear in search results may seem like it would draw traffic away from your other listings.
However, a study conducted by Google shows that ads drive 89 percent of incremental traffic. In other words, when you go without PPC ads for your branded keywords, your organic results will likely only make up about 11 percent of the traffic your ads would acquire.
This means ignoring branded keywords could see you missing out on leads. Plus, there are several key benefits of bidding on these terms that can help grow your conversion rate.
5 Reasons to Bid on Branded Keywords in Your Next PPC Campaign
An increase in traffic is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to what branded keywords have to offer. Let's take a look at five reasons to consider bidding on them for your next PPC campaign.
1. They Make It Easier to Control Your Messaging
Branded keywords enable you to control how you present your company on Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs). Google can change the title tags and meta descriptions of organic search results. However, with PPC ads, you determine the copy.
Additionally, branded keywords present an opportunity for you to display deal-specific messaging in search results. For example, if someone types your brand name into Google, they might be more drawn to a listing that contains a limited offer or promotion:
You can also use these ads to direct consumers to a specific landing page. With organic search results, there’s no guarantee that visitors will end up on a part of your site where they can convert. The more control you have, the easier it is to steer visitors toward making a purchase.
2. Your Competition May Be Using Them
PPC advertising can be extremely competitive. So much so that there’s a chance others in your industry are bidding on your branded keywords. If this is the case, searches for your business could return results for your competition instead:
A lead who might have been a new customer for you may end up making a purchase from your competitor. You may rank high on SERPs for your brand name organically, but if another company bids on your branded keywords, their ad will likely be more visible.
The simplest solution to this problem is to bid on your branded keywords yourself. However, it’s also helpful to conduct some competitor keyword analysis. You can do this by using a tool such as Serpstat:
This platform enables you to search for a keyword and analyze the competition for it. It even gives examples of the specific PPC ads using that term. This will tip you off to competitors who are using your branded keywords.
3. They'll Point You Toward Quality Prospects
Leads searching specifically for your brand name are usually closer to the point of conversion than those using generic search terms. You may find new target audiences after learning of a specific branded keyword you hadn’t considered targeting before.
Let’s say you have a company called Barry’s Boots. Most of your PPC efforts are focused on boots for men and women. Through keyword research, however, you discover that a popular search your ads get clicks for is “Barry’s Boots for children”. Now you know there’s value in targeting children’s shoes.
Of course, an important step in that process is conducting keyword research. You can use a tool such as Google Keyword Planner for this:
After you enter a branded keyword or domain, it will generate a list of related search terms to consider targeting. It also includes competition analysis, monthly searches, and a bid range for each.
4. Branded Keywords Are Cost-Effective
Generally speaking, company names aren't in very high demand for PPC ads. Therefore, bidding on branded keywords is usually less expensive than attempting to secure generic terms, making it a cost-effective strategy.
Also, branded search terms will likely lead to high CTRs, since the people searching for your brand name are usually closer to converting. High CTRs help improve the Quality Score of your PPC campaign.
High Quality Scores are important because they influence your CPC rates. The more valuable your campaign is, the less expensive it may be to display your ads for non-branded keywords.
Even if a competitor is bidding on your brand name, having a high Quality Score can lower your CPC for a higher ranking. You can then get your ad in the top spot on SERPs, improving your visibility and hopefully your CTR as well.
5. Using Branded Keywords Can Improve Conversions and Credibility
Appearing in both organic and paid search results can help increase click-throughs and conversions. The more real estate you take up on SERPs, the more likely it is a user will see and click on your ad or website:
Plus, there are several other conversion-boosting aspects of branded keywords that we've already covered in this post, including:
- Ads tend to drive higher levels of traffic than organic listings.
- PPC ads that use branded keywords are more likely to direct high-quality leads to your site.
- You can use PPC ads to send visitors straight to your landing pages or other areas where they can convert quickly.
Additionally, taking up a large amount of SERP space can help make your brand look more established and credible.
If you want your PPC campaign to be successful, it’s important to focus on keywords that are relevant to your audience. One way to do that is by bidding on branded keywords.
As we discussed in this post, there are five major reasons to pursue this strategy:
- Branded keywords make it easier to control your messaging.
- Your competitors may be using your brand name as a keyword in their ad campaigns.
- Targeting branded keywords may point you toward quality prospects.
- Branded keywords are cost-effective.
- Using branded keywords can improve conversions and credibility.
Do you have any questions about bidding on branded keywords? Let us know in the comments section below!