Branded vs. Non-Branded Keywords | Movers Development

Branded vs. non-branded keywords: which wins out?

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Being as complex and intricate as it is, Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is machinery that you need to maintain. However, you first need to set it up in the best manner. And an essential step in that setup is choosing the proper keywords for your moving company. Of course, before doing any of that, you need to learn a bit more about the types of keywords out there. And one of the lessons we’re here to share is that of making the comparison of branded vs. non-branded keywords.

Why is this so important for your optimization and advertising efforts?

Your choice of keywords directly influences the target audience you want to reach. And how you set up your content strategy based on those keywords can mean the difference between good and bad results. So, before starting anything, you first need to conduct detailed keyword research. Once you do that and comprise your list of preferred and opportunistic keywords, you need to make sure to monitor them daily and adjust to the needs of the market.

Person typing in keywords in Google search bar
You can tell a lot about users based on their search preferences.

This is usually when people come across the notion of branded vs. non-branded keywords. And it puzzles them because they are never quite sure which path to follow. Although this topic is more relatable to the aspect of PPC campaigns, it can easily be applied to your entire content strategy. Let’s start things off by defining the two types of keywords we reference here:

What are branded keywords?

Basically, branded words are ones that contain your company name. For example, keywords containing “Movers Development” or “MoversDev” would classify as branded keywords. However, using other brands in keywords does not qualify them as branded. This criterion only works with your brand.

When looking at branded vs. non-branded keywords, you need to understand the cause of researching either one. For instance, users typing in branded keywords demonstrate a direct interest in your company. Whether a result of referrals or other forms of advertising, people recognize your company as an authority in its respective industry and wish to conduct business with you. That is why the use of branded keywords usually comes after implementing a strong brand development strategy.

What are non-branded keywords?

You’ve already guessed it! Non-branded keywords contain your products or services but without your company name. So, if we were discussing the choice of keywords for Movers Development, the obvious choice of non-branded keywords would be:

In this particular category, the options are practically limitless, as people are more likely to research non-branded terms. And this opens your business to a much wider research range.

Branded vs. non-branded keywords – which produces better results?

This is usually the question most marketers have when faced with this choice. And it is especially important when creating PPC campaigns, given the cost attached to each keyword you attempt to push. Although they point towards different search intents and users, they are both essential for moving company SEO and PPC efforts. So, to better illustrate what tunes branded and non-branded keywords play, we will take a look at the following three criteria:

  • Visibility
  • Competition
  • Cost
  • Conversions
Check boxes with a pencil
Check your priorities and consider how branded vs. non-branded keywords fit in there.


If you are looking to increase the overall visibility of your business, then you need to target keywords most people search for. And when it comes to high search volume keywords, non-branded keywords definitely beat branded keywords. Hence, if your strategy is aimed towards increasing brand awareness and the presence of your brand on search engine results, non-branded is the way to go.


In a battle of branded vs. non-branded keywords, you can’t neglect to consider the competition when it comes to certain terms. Based on how many other companies bid on a particular keyword, you can use the Keywords Planner to determine just how competitive that keyword is. And the more it is, the harder it will prove to push your ad for it ahead of the competition.

This is brand bidding 101 for you right there.

That is where non-branded keywords lose out since they are not linked to any one company and are naturally more competitive. And when you have thousands of other businesses competing for the same keyword, you can see the primary issue. Therefore, it becomes apparent how nurturing a branded keyword strategy is the obvious choice here.

Be warned, however, that competitors may also bid on branded keywords to get a slice of the attention cake for your business. This practice is common in highly competitive markets, so it is definitely something to control closely in the moving industry.


Again, when looking at branded vs. non-branded keywords, the math when it comes to expenses is logical. Given the low competition that branded keywords tend to have, the cost-per-click (CPC) tends to be lower in comparison to non-branded keywords. So, if you have a limited PPC budget or are looking to reduce your overall CPC, make sure to switch over to branded keywords.


Finally, we have the conversion ratio for the two different types of keywords. Each company focuses on increasing revenue and sales – this is a given. And the textbook solution for this is targeting high-conversion keywords. However, when you consider branded vs. non-branded keywords, the conversion rate for the former is much higher. After all, those users already know what they’re searching for, so the chances that they will opt for your services or products are higher right from the start. And this makes branded keywords the smarter choice yet again, in terms of driving conversions.

Branded vs. non-branded keywords – the conclusion

It is the job of each marketer to decide which direction to take when faced with this decision. The good news is that one choice does not exclude the other. It all depends on your budget and choice of digital marketing strategy. And our choice would always be to find the ideal balance between the two. This tactic puts you in a position of control, where you can oversee the keyword research trends and, if need be, adjust your advertising efforts accordingly.

Analytics charts
You need to take everything into consideration when putting together your keyword strategy.