Taylor Scher Blog

Branded vs. Non-Branded Traffic: Measuring the Difference in Google Search Console

Table of Contents

One thing I always like to highlight with websites and Google Search Console is that sometimes, the data you see can be slightly misleading. 

When we’re looking in Google Search Console, it’s all the keyword data your site ranks for, whether branded or non-branded.

From most websites I’ve seen, branded clicks are almost always the primary driver of traffic to the website. 

How Branded vs. Non-Branded Clicks Can Be Misleading in Google Search Console

So when you’re looking in Google Search Console, depending if you’re a well-known brand or even if you’re not and haven’t invested in SEO yet, I’ve seen that brands are probably, in some cases, getting like 95% of their traffic specifically from branded traffic. 

GSC Total Clicks
GSC Non Branded Clicks

This isn’t an issue, but it can be misleading, mainly if you use keyword clicks to measure SEO performance.

You may be misled by the number of branded clicks on the website if you report total clicks.

If I’m a well-known brand hosting conferences and events, and my company name is well-known, this can affect your total click volume. Again, that’s not bad, but when you’re reporting specifically SEO, it can be misleading when you’re going by clicks.

Whereas if you look at non-branded clicks as well, if you can separate them – branded versus non-branded – you can at least put aside outside factors that can influence how your SEO is performing. 

With non-branded, it’s easier to measure if you capture new visitors with your content. So, as I said, it can be very misleading if you are, and even in some cases with a homepage, that will be the primary driver of traffic. 

Separating Branded vs Non-Branded Clicks in Google Search Console

So, if you’re in Google Search Console, you’ll want to add your brand name as a query filter. 

GSC Query Filter

Make sure to set the filter to “queries not containing.”

GSC Queries Not Containing

You can see in this case that your clicks will drop by quite a bit. It will be primarily branded traffic. 

So, it will be much lower when I put that filter in to remove those queries. 

Example of a Website With High Branded Clicks and Low Non-Branded Clicks

So, using the example below, total clicks are 4.57K, and non-branded clicks are just 55. 

Total Clicks vs Non-Branded Clicks in Google Search Console

You can see how that can be misleading when you are reporting on SEO, and if you want to show off wins and show what you’ve been able to accomplish, the thing that you do want to focus on is non-branded traffic.

But even if you focus on branded traffic, which isn’t an issue anyway, and honestly speaking from experience, branded traffic typically has the most conversion potential. 

You do want to meet users from where they’re searching for your brand, whether that’s a pricing page, questions they have about your brand, or, honestly, just researching your brand itself. 

But speaking from a specific SEO perspective, it can be misleading because outside factors can influence brand awareness, and it’s not a direct measurement of your SEO performance. 

So when it comes to tracking with SEO, really non-branded is going to be the metric that shows the value of your work

Get the News Latest Here

    Recent Posts

    Most Popular

    Follow Me

    Copyright 2024 – TaylorScherSEO. All rights reserved
    Scroll to Top