Are You Advertising on Google Adwords For Your Brand Keywords?

by Deepak Kanakaraju on January 11, 2015

You may be running a lot of AdWords campaigns promoting different products and services, but have you ever thought about advertising for your brand keywords?

Multi-Ethnic Group of People and Brand Concept

More often than not, your website will have No.1 ranking in the organic search results when someone searches for your brand name. So you may have not considered running a paid ad for that. In this post, you will find out why you shouldn’t miss out running ads for brand keywords.

If someone searches for “digital deepak” this website would rank first. I may not need to setup an Adwords ad for my website because this is just a personal blog, and I do not have much competition in search. But, you might have to setup a brand search campaign for your company. There are several reasons for that:

1. Protect Yourself from Your Competition

If you do not advertise for your brand keywords, a competitor can easily advertise for the same keywords and steal your customers away.

Here, you can see very well known brand is losing potential customers because they are not running PPC ads for their brand keywords!

I have heard about Synthesis being good managed WordPress hosting solution. When I search for them on Google (because I am not sure about their website URL), I am pleasantly greeted by their competition!

brand searches competition

Since Google is dominating the internet with their browser, internet users are likely just to search for a brand name than enter the correct URL on the address bar.

If you are not advertising for your brand keywords, you are giving an open permission for your competitors to steal your potential customers away.

Brand search PPC ads are not that important when no one is advertising for your brand keywords. For example, I do not have any competitors for my personal brand (yet!), but if someone is advertising a digital marketing training program or consultancy for the keyword “digital deepak” then I would jump in and setup an ad for my brand keywords.

Bidding on competitor terms on Google is a usual practice, and you don’t want this to happen. And yes, you can steal customers from your competitors by running an ad for your competitor keywords. If they are not advertising for their brand keywords, you have hit a jackpot!

2. Dominate the Search Results Page

People searching for your brand name are highly likely to become your customers. They have come across your brand from some other channel and are looking for you online.

When you advertise in AdWords for your brand keywords, users will see a highlighted ad on top your organic results. This is a good opportunity to strengthen your brand in the minds of the people who already know you. This also helps 32% more clicks!*


For example, if you search for “flipkart” in Google, they have advertised in Adwords for their brand keyword even though their website is ranking No.1 in organic search results.

Many people just search for a brand name instead of typing in the domain name because not all domains end with .com. They are also likely to make a mistake while entering the URL. You may be doing this yourself; instead of entering the website URL and going to the website directly, you search for the brand name in Google.

But you may ask: why pay for ads when users will naturally click on the first result of the organic listings? This is not always the case. As you can see from the point No.3:

3. Paid Ads Will Drive Incremental Traffic

Studies have shown that paid ads will send you incremental traffic and will not cannibalise too much into your organic traffic. has run experiments on this and they claims that you will lose 18% of organic traffic that you may have otherwise received for free. But overall you are going to get 32% more clicks on brand name searches.



You will not incur high CPCs with such ads because usually the quality score is sky high when you are advertising your website for the brand keywords. Also, the conversions will be high because you are not advertising to people who are hearing about you for the first time.

This Works for Non-Branded Long Tail Keywords Too

The number 32% may vary with markets and brands but ads will drive incremental traffic and will slightly cannibalise into your organic traffic. And don’t be surprised: the same applies for non-branded long tail keywords too!

practo sem

Here, you can see that, a doctor search engine is running ads though they are ranking No.1 for a long tail keyword. (Fun Fact: I setup that ad when I was working at!)

4. Get Users Near the Point of Conversion

When you advertise for your brand keywords, you are going to capture users who are near the end of your conversion funnel and they are highly likely to convert into leads and/or customers.

According to WordStream:

People who are searching for your branded terms are already acquainted with your company. Perhaps they’ve heard about you from a friend, researched you in the past or are even return customers. They know you have what they want and, chances are, they are further along in the buying cycle than the average Joe Shmoe who’s searching more generic terms.

Brand keywords ads will give you an instant boost in your ROI on ads. There is no reason not to start running them today!

5. Control and Split Test Your Messaging

Adwords PPC search ads allow you to include site links and custom description. If you are not sure if your meta description is the best in the world, you can run two ads with different descriptions and learn which messaging gives better CTRs and conversions.

In the following example, you can see Flipkart is trying out new messages and has the ability to drive traffic to specific internal pages with offers.

custom messaging

With this learning you can change your meta description and messaging in all your web properties.

It is almost impossible to test messaging with SEO meta descriptions. So get to the best performing meta descriptions by testing it on ad descriptions.


With great benefits like dominating the search results page, protecting your brand from competition and the ability to control your messaging – there is no reason not to start your brand search campaign on Adwords.

The same applies for all the search engines. You can do the same in and Yahoo as well. But with Google having the majority market share in most of the countries, I wouldn’t worry about other search engines.

I hope this article helped you get good insights about PPC search ads for brand keywords!

Any questions? Leave a comment below and we will discuss!

{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

Ishank Khare January 11, 2015 at 10:26 pm

But Google Adword is too much costly for low price product selling buisnesses.


Deepak January 12, 2015 at 6:18 am

Anyway try running a brand keywords campaign because the CPCs will be very low with brand keywords.


Arun Sankar January 12, 2015 at 2:43 pm

Nice Article 🙂 Keep writing more, so that I’ll have more to read. 😉


Deepak January 12, 2015 at 3:01 pm



Joe Putnam January 13, 2015 at 10:47 pm

Thank you for linking to iSpionage, Deepak!


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