As a growth marketer, one of the biggest pains of my job is branded paid search.
Every day we have to compete and pay for traffic from people who are already searching for our brand on Google. This is a waste of time, money, and energy.
It turns out my job has gotten easier.
In a recent analysis of Yext branded search, we found that we won back 34% of branded searches from Google since implementing Yext Answers — a search engine we developed for business websites that gives customers official answers to their questions — on our own site in October of 2019.
B.A. (Before Answers)
Before implementing Yext Answers, we saw an average of 82,341 total branded searches per month on Google, which includes a single word “Yext” search to a multi-word query using our brand’s name.
After implementing Yext Answers, we saw an average of 62,822 branded searches per month on Google. And this dramatic decrease happened almost immediately, going from 78,606 branded searches in September 2019 to 62,819 branded searches in November 2019, the month after we added Yext Answers to our website.
This is because customers are getting the answers to their questions about Yext directly from Yext and don’t have to bounce back to Google to re-run their search. That’s great for our customers, and also a win for us: we don’t have to compete and pay for traffic that was already on our website.
34% More Official Answers
The data story gets even better. When excluding simply navigational queries that contain only “yext” from the data, we found that we actually won back 34% of branded searches from Google thanks to Yext Answers.
Before implementing Yext Answers, we saw an average of 49,666 non-navigational branded searches per month on Google. After implementing Yext Answers, we saw an average of 32,717 non-navigational branded searches per month on Google. This is significant because most people use multiple keywords — often full sentences — when searching on Google. So that means we’re successfully answering more of our customers’ questions with direct, official answers.
The best part? This decrease in Google branded search queries directly corresponds to an increase in searches with Yext Answers. In our first full month with Yext Answers on our website in November 2019, we saw 5,067 searches. Last month we saw 12,494 searches –more than 2x in less than a year. In other words, more and more people are coming directly to our website for answers to their questions about our brand rather than turning to Google first.
Answers, not ads
Every customer experience starts with a search, and there are two places where this happens: on your company’s website or on Google. If it happens on Google, you’re automatically at a disadvantage because you have to compete with other businesses for a customer specifically seeking you out. And if they happen to pick your ad, you’ve just paid for someone expressing the highest form of intent.
So if you want to take the b.s. out of branded search and have more people visiting your site than Google, you have to compete with Google. When you deliver a better search experience on your own website you can earn more traffic and more business in record time.