Difference Between Branded and Non-Branded Keywords

Difference Between Branded and Non-Branded Keywords

In digital marketing and search engine optimization (SEO), keywords play a vital role in driving targeted website traffic. However, not all keywords are created equal. Marketers often distinguish between two important categories of keywords: branded and non-branded. Understanding the difference between these two types of keywords is crucial for developing an effective SEO strategy. In this blog, we will explore the difference between branded and non-branded keywords.

Difference Between Branded and Non-Branded Keywords

What are Branded Keywords?

What are Branded Keywords?

Branded keywords are search terms that include a specific brand name or its variations. For example, if Nike is the brand, “Nike shoes” or “Nike Air Max” would be considered branded keywords. These keywords are specifically aimed towards consumers who are already aware of a certain brand or have a specific desire to look up its goods, services, or information.

Characteristics and Benefits of Branded Keywords

Brand Association

Branded keywords help strengthen brand recognition and association. Users who search for a brand-specific term are already aware of the brand and are more likely to convert into customers.

High Conversion Rate

Since branded keywords attract users with a specific brand intent, they often generate higher conversion rates compared to non-branded keywords. Users searching for branded keywords are usually in the later stages of the buying process and are more likely to make a purchase.

Brand Protection

By targeting branded keywords, companies can ensure that their website appears prominently in search results when users search for their brand. This helps protect the brand’s reputation and prevents competitors from dominating the search results for brand-related queries.

What are Non-Branded Keywords?

Non-branded keywords, on the other hand, do not include specific brand names and are more generic or industry-related. They focus on the products, services, or general information related to a particular industry or niche. For instance, “running shoes” or “best smartphones” are examples of non-branded keywords.

Characteristics and Benefits of Non-Branded Keywords

Wider Audience Reach

Non-branded keywords have a broader appeal as they target users who are searching for general information or exploring options within a specific industry or niche. By targeting non-branded keywords, companies can reach a larger audience and potentially attract new customers.

Organic Growth

Non-branded keywords can be a useful tool for increasing search engine ranks and boosting organic traffic. Companies can establish themselves as knowledgeable sources within their industries and draw targeted organic traffic by producing quality content that is optimised for non-branded keywords.

Market Research

Market Research

Non-branded keywords provide valuable insights into user behaviour and preferences. Companies can identify emerging trends, understand customer needs, and adapt their marketing strategies by analyzing the search queries associated with non-branded keywords.

How to Balance Branded and Non-Branded Keywords?

Balancing branded and non-branded keywords in your digital marketing strategy is important for achieving a well-rounded and effective approach. Here are some steps you can follow to achieve a good balance

Understand the Difference

Non-branded keywords are more general and are associated with the goods or services you provide, whereas brand-specific keywords include specific brand names or variations of your company name. As an example, “Nike shoes” is a branded keyword, however, “running shoes” is not.

Set Goals

Determine your marketing goals and objectives. Are you looking to increase your brand awareness or drive conversions? This will help you allocate resources and prioritize your keyword strategy accordingly.

Research Keyword

Research Keyword

Conduct thorough keyword research to identify branded and non-branded keywords relevant to your business. Use tools like Google Keyword Planner, SEMrush, or Ahrefs tool to identify search volumes, competition, and potential opportunities.

Allocate Resources

Allocate your marketing budget and resources based on your goals. If you’re focused on brand awareness, you may want to allocate more resources to branded keywords. If your goal is to drive new customer acquisition, you might prioritize non-branded keywords.

Optimize Landing Pages

Create dedicated landing pages optimized for both branded and non-branded keywords. For branded keywords, ensure the landing page features your brand name and offers relevant information. For non-branded keywords, provide valuable content related to the search query to attract and engage users.

Monitor and Adjust

Continuously track the performance of your branded and non-branded keyword campaigns. Consider measures like ROI, CTRs, and conversion rates when doing your analysis. Adjust your keyword strategy as necessary to maximise outcomes based on the data.

Leverage Remarketing

Leverage Remarketing

Use remarketing techniques to target users who have already interacted with your brand through branded keywords. This can help reinforce your brand message and increase conversions.

Consider Competitor Analysis

Analyze your competitors’ strategies to gain insights into their use of branded and non-branded keywords. This can help you identify potential gaps and opportunities in your own strategy.

Remember, the ideal balance between branded and non-branded keywords may vary depending on your industry, target audience, and specific goals. Regular monitoring and adjustments are crucial to optimizing your keyword strategy over time.

Which is better: branded keywords or non-branded keywords?

Although this article has discussed both branded and non-branded keywords, it is still unclear which is preferable. The correct answer is that there is no right answer.

Both branded and non-branded keywords are significant since they both have different functions.

Branded keywords are effective for well-known businesses looking to focus their audience and fully optimize a message. On the other hand, non-branded keywords are more effective for smaller businesses looking to increase their market penetration and authority.

Although the search intent for both terms varies, businesses must use both of them as effective tools in their SEO and PPC efforts.


Both branded and non-branded keywords play important roles in a comprehensive SEO strategy. Branded keywords strengthen the brand association, protect brand identity, and yield higher conversion rates. Non-branded keywords, on the other hand, broaden the reach, foster organic growth, and provide valuable market insights. A well-balanced approach that incorporates both types of keywords can maximize visibility, attract a diverse range of users, and ultimately contribute to the overall success of a digital marketing campaign.