Building Content for Branded and Non-Branded Search

5 Comments

Summary

We all known that branded search visitors translate to high conversions than non-branded. But adding to the complexity, recent research conclude that the conversion process often involves the user first arriving under non-branded term (“hd dvd player”), to return later to purchase with a branded term (“toshiba HD-A2 hd dvd player”).

Acting on this information for PPC and keyword bid management is easy, but this user behavior applies to SEO as well, especially in the need for positioning content for each “step” of the conversion process (from non-branded to branded).


Branded v. Non-Branded Search and Conversion Rates

Branded v. Non Branded Terms

Back in May, 360i and SearchIgnite released a study (PDF) focusing on the relationship between branded and non-branded search terms in conversation rates.

Some of the key findings include (see graph):

  • 25% of conversions are from users who clicked on multiple ads
  • Highest conversion rate (9.30%) from when the first and last click were from branded terms
  • High conversion rate (8.73%) from those that first clicked from non-branded terms and the last click on branded terms

How this applies to SEO and Content

Search Intent and Content

While the 360i/SearchIgnite study was geared towards the intelligent allocation of branded vs. non-branded PPC terms, the research applies to SEO as well.

The study demonstrates that many users go from “general research” to “purchaser”, so while a user may find a website intially under “HD DVD Player guides” , the user may return later to purchase using the branded term “Toshiba HD-A2 HD DVD Player”.

“Content is King” is the old Maxim. And for “SEOing” e-commerce websites, it is about ensuring that the e-commerce website has the type of content the user is looking for for each step of the buying process: 1) General Research (“Why are HD DVD Players different?” Page); 2) Targeted Research (“HD DVD Player Review & Guide” Page); and 3) Purchasers (Product Page for the Specific Item).

Thus, there is not only the “long tail” of search that has the opportunity to be captured, but also the process a user takes from general research to buying. An e-commerce website should be positioned to lead the user through each step of the process, helping influence the buying making process.

Does your e-commerce website have this range of content?

5 comments

  1. You hit the nail on the head. I’m still waiting for the winner that gets this one right. Any runners-up you can suggest?

  2. Zuzf,

    Not too many websites have achieved this in totality (content for every stage of the conversion funnel). I think Amazon is trying to do this with its introduction of the wiki, but it lacks adoption.

    My employer, e-Storm, is however working with a Client that hopes to achieve this. I’m looking forward to its launch.

  3. […] Content Funneling (See Emergence-Media on “Building Content for Branded and Non-Branded Search“) How is your website catering to your target audience in general product research, comparative shopping and purchasing mode? How can you be considered an authoritative source for each? […]

  4. […] Content Funneling is an issue that Emergence-Media has dicussed before in “Building Content for Branded and Non-Branded Search“: “Content is King” is the old Maxim. And for “SEOing” e-commerce websites, it is about ensuring that the e-commerce website has the type of content the user is looking for for each step of the buying process: 1) General Research (”Why are HD DVD Players different?” Page); 2) Targeted Research (”HD DVD Player Review & Guide” Page); and 3) Purchasers (Product Page for the Specific Item). […]

  5. Very well focussed summary. I would be interested in seeing more examples of this at work. While one of the other commentors mentioned Amazon.com, which with or without a wiki has an exceptionally long tail, it seems that at some point a branded search will engage the brand’s website.

    I would like to
    (a) tune AdSense and my site’s content to make available the implications of this data
    (b) interact at a feed/API level with other sites who may share ability to cover bases

    Any more site examples, please get in touch through my URL.