The following was inspired by an email thread that went back and forth between myself and the President of a Web Design House. the project mentioned is in the very beginning stages of an SEO project that we are fulfilling for one of their clients.I thought you might find this of interest.....
At the start of a project brand increases because of linking. Often times a client thinks that this was built in, when in fact some of it may have been but Google does not necessarily care about your brand. They care about mentions and citations of your brand. Google cares only what links to the references of your brand across the web on your site or not. As your links increase to your pages of your site, your brand references (keywords) within your analytics should go up.
So what you get last month in your original, pre-seo campaign "brand traffic" spreads out to larger derivatives of that word and more searches as it gets links to the pages with brand words. And links that carry those branded words in the anchor text increase. In the case of brand it usually is not very competitive if at all, so a few links can really get the brand out there.
This by the way is what reputation management is about. One can easily steal your brand by creating pages about your company on many web pages. It can even be done anonymously on free sites. Its easy to do because there is 0 competition for it until someone actually does it.
The idea being that you can get crowded out totally or partially from the SERPS (search positions) for your own name!Thats why it is important for companies to do more socially and thru syndicates to populate the web with references to their brand.
By the way we often will get an agent site to come up higher in the SERPS than a broker site online (if the broker is not our client). Its very easy if the broker isn't working for in bound links.
This reputation thing is not as bad as it is hyped up to be yet. I have seen few attempts by malcontents but not done very well. But I do think it will be a major problem down the road not just in the real estate business. But I see this playing out in how news and politics can be perceived.
For a glimpse of the future and managing reputation and perceptions,
study how the Obama and McCain campaigns have run their online
marketing for the past election.
Election Special: Whatever You Do, Do Not Vote For This Candidate
Even McCain used online Video masterfully. Obama used the web better than any one politician or business yet.
Confessing Your Sins Will Get You Traffic!
A site can be SEOd all day long, but if it does not have links it does not fully or even in some cases partially exist to Google. On many templated real estate sites there is not much one can do as far as onpage optimization.
So how does one get high rankings?
Links. Links make up for the sins of the site. They are the absolution from the priest called Google.
So right now a month into the project what we see is a start of a wider span of brand words. And even a small start at seeing real estate search words giving traffic.
We can do that by comparing the search strings from last month before
the SEO launch to now. This month is almost double brand based visits.
(names changed to keep the client private)
The list is longer (width) and many words are getting more visits compared to last month.
ie. TOTAL BRAND visits are double last month
27 century 21 franchise name
19 century 21 franchise name realty
14 franchise name
6 century franchise name
6 www.franchise name.com
4 city century 21
4 century 21 in state