For the Win Wednesdays 3 – Branded Traffic

One of the coolest parts of Google Analytics is the Organic report. In this report, you can see the real queries that visitors used to get to your website. This data is, unfortunately, being pulled away more and more, but it’s still valuable to determine relatively how much search traffic is coming from keyphrases that use your brand or trademarked product names. This data can give you insight into brand awareness and demand online. In markets where brand awareness is very poor, users generally use non-branded phrases, while markets with high visibility and brand awareness typically see less. You can use Google’s keyword research tool to find the information I have below (use “exact match”).

Example non-branded phrase: [voip phones]: 5,400 searches globally per month

Example branded phrase: [mitel voip phones]: 46 searches globally per month

Example competitor1 branded phrase: [cisco voip phones]: 1000 searches globally per month

Example competitor2 branded phrase: [polycom voip phones]: 1000 searches globally per month

From a high level, new user point of view, Mitel does not have great market penetration. The picture changes when you get into specific phone models, but I digress. Now, Google’s keyword tool is great and all, but it isn’t as accurate as your own on-site Analytics, and it won’t give you as full a picture or great trends like Analytics will.

Enter, the Organic Traffic Sources Report

To start with, jump over to Traffic Sources->Sources->Search->Organic. This report tracks organic search traffic from most search engines, not only Google. You can check out keyphrase traffic from Bing, Yahoo, Ask, etc, etc. We’ll use all of their data for now. Next to the filter box, hit the “advanced” link, and replace the “containing” filter with “Matching RegExp”. For Top Draw, I’ve previously filtered for those keyphrases and I know that we don’t really rank on any non-branded phrases that include “Top” or “Draw”, so we should be safe including any keyphrase that includes either of those two phrases. To quickly build a regular expression that matches either of those keypwords, I separate them with a pipe ‘|’ and end up with top|draw. This filtering will give me all my branded traffic. If you have a lot of misspellings of your brand name, make sure to include those too.

regex filter

Filtering for your brand can give you a feel for seasonal demand, changes in online brand awareness, and insight into branded product or service demand. If you find yourself using this filter often, make it into a new custom advanced segment. Advanced segments can be pulled into most other reports to let you slice and dice with a bit more precision. Personally, I track branded search traffic across organic and PPC, but if you just want to see organic, simply add another filter.

branded search traffic

What are “For the Win Wednesdays”?

For the Win Wednesdays is a weekly series of posts tackling 1 technique or strategy of analysis in Google Analytics. These posts are created for intermediate users of Analytics, those who are familiar with the interface but are unsure about different application methods. For the full series, see the For the Win Wednesday tag.

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