Thursday, June 19, 2008

Hitwise on Google's Trademark Changes

Hitwise has monitored paid search activity since Google changed its trademark policy in the first week of May (full report here).

In the first four weeks after the change, 11.2% of search traffic that the top 100 online brands received from their top brand term came via a paid listing on a search engine - compared to 9.2% before the change (up 22%).

The travel sector in particular has been one of the worst affected with travel brands increasing their paid brand search rate from 18.4% to 26.6% - the largest of any sector.

The bottom line is that while brand owners' websites have not been losing traffic they've been paying more to keep it front of mind with consumers.

Linda Fox, lead reporter, Travolution


Darren Cronian said...

Having a big brand name in a PPC ad, to find that the link doesn't actually take you to that brand but elsewhere, must be frustrating for consumers aswell.

Travel Rants had a cheeky stint at PPC with a few branded names this week, I'm left £100 worse off, but it was interesting to see how many people search for brand names still on Google.

Travolution Blogger said...

Thanks Darren, it does leave you wondering how much consumers are aware of in terms of paid for search and natural.

Also, the search giants would have us believe brand searches are increasing - hmmm, wonder why?

Darren Cronian said...

I think consumers are much more internet saavy, and putting my consumer head on for a second, I very rarely click on sponsored ads.

In fact, I don't understand why advertising online has become so popular considering less and less of us are clicking on banners.

I wish I knew their secret formula because monetization is tough at the moment.

As for brand searches, I'm not sure I agree that it's increasing, but I am seeing from my own stats, that I get visitors finding TR when searching for brand names.

MelC said...

Combining search and display can have a seven-fold increase in your campaign's effectiveness. We (Microsoft) have some research out very soon to that effect. Brand search is on the up because it's navigational. Users know exactly where they want to go and use search to get there.

Darren Cronian said...

Melc, Interesting.

Could you give an example or explain what you mean by search and display.

Do you mean a banner, with search built in? I've often thought about creating such a thing, where people can search for content written on Travel Rants through a banner ad on another site.

MelC said...

It's where users have been exposed to a banner + search ad. We'll publish the research on very soon...

Darren Cronian said...

Thanks Mel, Interesting read on Blog Analytics, especially around bounce rates. I’ve read a lot of stuff from people who have said that you should be looking at a low bounce rate, but have wondered if the same apply’s to a blog. Will keep a look out for the research.