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What to do when your business is not ranking for your own business name.

If you are actively doing SEO on your website, there’s a decent chance of it ranking naturally for its brand terms already. However, if your domain name does not contain your brand terms or you have other sites competing for your brand terms (common particularly for those who also sell their own products ) you may need to do brand SEO, perhaps even adding your brand terms as keywords to your existing SEO campaign.

Ranking on the 1st result for you business name, heavily depends on:

  1. How popular your company already is, compared to the other product/service/person.
  2. The context of the phrase comprises your brand name
  3. How much SEO you’re willing to do, when your biz name is too generic

How to Rank for Your Brand Name

Ok, so you’ve made the decision to rank for your brand name. First of all let’s define what is the problem for not ranking for it.

We will see in detail 2 cases:

  1. You’ve just stated your business. + a weekly plan
  2. Your company name is too generic or includes a high competitive keyword.

 

Let’s dive in (:

What is the major problem?

Just started your business..

If you just started your business or just launched your website is quite possible you don’t rank in 1st page for your brand name. You probably don’t even have social media accounts yet. Even though, social media can’t help in SEO, they can definitely create a “context” for your business in the web.

In this mini guide, I’m going to provide you with a complete linking process and timeline for new sites (new businesses)- helping you get from “Day 1” to “Page 1”.

Week 1:

1.Initial Launch of website + Announcement on your Social Profiles.

Start by making an announcement of your new websites on your own social media or company’s social media and tell people about it.

2. Do on-page optimizations of your branded terms (see the relevant section below).

3. Create accounts on social media for your business and optimize them for your brand name.

Most recommended social media platforms: facebook, linkedin.

Week 2:

1.Analyze Competition’s Backlinks & SM Profiles

There is a lot of work to be done here!

Use an SEO tool (such as Ahrefs or Moz or SERanking) and see what kind of backlinks your competitors have. Keep a detailed list of these domains and what is the nature of backlink (eg. listing site, partnership, paid content, guest blog, company profile etc.). Do this for your most important competitors (at least 3) and the biggest companies of the industry (at least 2).

After completing this task, you’ll have a clear picture of how your market do link building and what should be your next steps.

Along the way, analyze their social media profiles and what kind of content they post/ how often they post.

2. Planning content for Social Media for a month.

Make sure you have active social media for your business. I would recommend creating a monthly social media plan for all the platforms you’re using and plan all the posts ahead. You can use a tool like Publer

3. Create 15 citations

Your business need to get citations by putting their name, address and phone number into Yellow Pages and other business directories. At this point of the process, create at least 15 citations for your website.

Week 3:

1. Create Google My Business Profile & make the proper optimizations (see the relevant section below)

2. Build backlinks where your competition already do (50 backlinks)

Using the list you’ve created before, build backlinks where your competition is already mentioned. For starters, create 50 backlinks in different types of websites (company profiles, business listings, forums, content distribution platforms etc.)

Week 4:

1.Create another 50 profiles on business listings, directories & forums

That they’re not listed in your competition list. Don’t forget to have a link pointing to your homepage or a specific product page.

2. 15 comments on Niche blogs.

A easy way to find relevant blogs, is by using the following search operator

inurl:blog AND “keyword” (eg. inurl:blog AND “fashion trends”)

3. 10 comments on Forums

The recommended daily engagement to all these platforms, forums is the following:

  • 10 comments per day
  • 15 likes per day

Repeat this process, for at least 2 times!

Business name has huge competition or is too generic name

Ranking for your business name isn’t always as easy as it seems. If you have a generic business name , you’re competing against generic searches for that same term.

These 7 tips , will help you overcoming any difficulty.

1. Instead of focusing on the generic brand term, focus on its long-tail versions.

Later on, it will be much easier to rank for the generic term. So you might try to these variations to ranking for your business name.

Keyword Combinations:

  • business name + industry
  • business name + products/services
  • business name + location
  • business name + owner’s name
 

Searching other Navigational Queries

Other areas to check out are navigational or known brand queries that help users navigate and interact with your brand. For example:

business name + “phone”

  • business name + “customer service”
  • business name + “FAQ”
  • business name + “return policy”
  • business name + “shipping”
  • business name + “refund”
  • business name + “offers” or “sales”

2. Build up citations and create profiles on business listings, directories

Again, building citations and create profiles on aggregators is the way to go.

The must-do platforms are the following:

  • Glassdoor
  • Workable
  • Quora
  • Reddit
  • Indeed
  • Crunchbase
  • Bloomberg
  • Wikipedia
 

Here are some authoritative websites to have in mind:

3. Optimize Google My Business Profile

Google My Business is a free tool offered by Google for business owners to manage how their information is listed in search. With Google My Business, you can manage your location on Google maps, the knowledge graph, and online reviews. Just creating a profile is not enough. There are some things to watch out..

Here are the main points to focus on:

1.Choose a relevant, specific category

2. Update Google My Business Information

Update: business hours, business info, business address. Add a relevant core keyword naturally – when it’s possible.

3. Upload high-quality images

Make sure you’ve uploaded: profile photo, your logo, cover photo, additional photos

4. Make sure your information matches everywhere else.

5. Encourage reviews.

Entice good customers to leave reviews. Let them know that it’s quick and easy to leave business reviews on mobile or desktop computers.

6. Make sure your website and content is optimized for search.

  • Incorporate relevant local keywords into meta description and page title and copy on each page, where you can do so naturally.

  • Add schema markup to your website.

  • Create content with a local focus

  • Look for local linking opportunities.

4. Do on-page optimizations of your branded keywords

Of course, ranking for your brand name – especially ehn your brand name is a high competitive keyword, requires on-page optimizations as well.

There are 2 main things to do:

  • Include your business name in page titles and meta descriptions,in ALL pages.
  • Include core business keywords in page titles and meta descriptions, to create relevancy in the eyes of Google. (eg. online pharmacy – ofarmakopoiosmou.gr)

This is the one of the things I did to rank 1st position for the keyword “online φαρμακειο” for the website ofarmakopoiosmou.gr

If Google feels phrase is contextually related to something specific, it will always want to deliver that result to searches in an attempt to match their perceived intent.

5. Add structured data

Structured data, also called schema markup, is a type of code that makes it easier for search engines to crawl, organize, and display your content. So, structured data communicates to search engines what your data means.

Adding structured data, also known as schema markup,can give you a significant SEO boost and increase your rankings. No, you don’t need to know how to code at all.

You can find the official home to everything schema at schema.org. You’ll probably be glad to hear that you don’t need to learn everything about schema markup to use it on your site. In fact, you can (and should) start using structured data by adding a plugin (eg. RankMath).

Most important types of schema to add:

  • Business name
  • Logo
  • Contact Point
  • Address
  • Open Hours
  • Service Type

6. Build brand-anchored backlinks

The most highly correlated ranking signal is Domain-Level Link Features. This would include link metrics such as the quality of links, quantity of links, the trust of those links etc.

But link building may be the single most important thing you do in your effort to rank for your brand, but you’ll still want to do the other items mentioned above.

Link building may be the single most important thing you do

in your effort to rank for your brand.

So, what is a brand-anchored backlink? For me, a link that used the anchor text “Anna Moragli” or “Search Magic” is what I’d be aiming for. If you were to take a look at the backlink profile of most brands, you’d see that majority of backlinks to their sites include the brand name as the link text. Ex. a link to the McDonalds website would be McDonalds. 

If you wanted to increase the likelihood that you would rank for your brand name, building links with the anchor text of your brand name would be the most powerful way to do so.

7.Create and optimize for SEO an FAQ page (or a Knowledge Base)

The easy way to do it: (that works )

  • Perform Keyword Research and identify questions //or keywords that you are ranking for and create questions( you can use answerthepublic.com) . They could be frequently asked questions from your clients. (Long-tail keywords are very easy to rank for.)
  • Create/ Update the FAQ page of your site and use these keywords.
  • Create relevant content, answering questions and mention your business name. You can also, use keyword variations as mentioned above.
  • Add FAQ schema to questions
  • Build backlinks for your FAQ page.

BONUS tip: "Buy" more real estate in Google's Search Results by optimizing for Featured Snippets

There are typically 2 types of featured snippets, you will go after.

  1. List Snippet
  2. Paragraph Snippet

What you need to know:

  1. An incredibly important part of ranking in the paragraph snippet is to have a short paragraph of text (max 45 words) that directly answers the query. This text should be as close to the page as possible
  2. For ranking in the list based snippet, you need to make sure that you add each line in the list as a H2 or H3 on your page, with a number at the start (eg. 1. Build trust with the people on your team)

Final Thoughts

After reading this post you should have a good idea (I hope you do) of how to rank first in Google for your brand name.

No matter what size your business is, you can rank for your business name. Integrating branded keywords into your SEO campaign will help your site to build recognition with both visitors and search engines.

If you have any specific questions about how to do this, for help doing this, or to determine how viable this would be, feel free to reach out to me or comment below.

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