Brand bidding strategies in search engine marketing
It is obvious the importance of SEO and PPC advertising strategies to brand marketers, however to what extent should these strategies be implemented together for branding queries? It is quite usual to find corporations bidding on brand terms while at the same time running a PPC campaign, mainly because brand terms usually drive quite a large amount of traffic at a low cost per click (CPC). It has been proved that being in both top sponsored and top organic positions for brand queries can lift the site traffic, however it can also cause traffic cannibalisation. Should marketers bid on brand terms when a website is already appearing in top of the ranking in Google organic search results?
Brand bidding tips
Below are few tips why you should or shouldn’t bid on brands terms.
Generally it is not recommended bidding on brand terms when:
1. Your website is ranking number 1, your brand is trademarked in Google (therefore no one can bid on it) and you are the only one in the sponsored listing
2. Your paid search ads are similar to your organic search results therefore there is no added value to it
3. Your website is ranking number 1 for search queries that include a variation of your brand name and you are the only one in the sponsored listing
4. Your website is ranking number one and only results not related to your brand are coming up in the sponsored search for search query – if users are searching for your brand, users are most unlikely to click to an unrelated ad
Generally it is recommended bidding on brand terms when:
1. You are not ranking number one for brand terms (and generic terms)
2. There are several results and businesses associated with your brand name
3. You are on top of the organic search results, however you want to push users when looking for your brand to a special product/offer page
4. You own different sites for the same brand and you need to differentiate
5. You want to test different promotions
Make sure your brand is trademarked in Google, (you can submit your request directly to Google) to stop advertisers appearing against your brand. Test the impact of pausing PPC ads appearing for a brand related search query for a period of time (ideally 4 weeks). Look at conversion data for the same keywords from paid and organic and run a cost vs. revenue comparison.
Bidding on brand terms really depends on the industry you are in and how competitive it is. You should evaluate the ROI for these terms and test how much traffic you are getting from your organic search results when paid ads are paused. Even if the CPC for brand terms can be very small, the overall cost can become quite considerable for large brand that can drive a large amount of clicks. Don’t waste your money for traffic that you will get anyway, especially if you have budget restrictions.