• Lucky Luke

Brand Vs Generic Organic Queries

Have you ever imagined to monitor the volumes of your branded organic queries against the generic ones? It's important to know if the majority of your organic traffic comes from your brand (or not). This post will tell you how to monitor the brand and non brand organic search with the help of Data Studio.

Brand And Generic Organic Search - Data Studio

Google Search Console is a really powerful tool, as it lets you see how is the users' behavior on organic search results, capturing data such as impressions, clicks, CTR and position of your website URLs. In addition it shows what keywords people use, in order to find you on Google organically. So it's great to know which types of keywords bring more traffic to your website through search results.

Do you know which keywords bring more organic traffic to your website? Branded or Generic?


  1. Organic Branded Keywords: all the queries that contain your brand or variations of it (including misspellings). In our case: my digital lab, digitalab analytics, mdlab etc

  2. Organic Non-Branded or Generic Keywords: queries that reference your products, services or generic terms but don't include your brand name. For instance: digital analytics solutions, demo data studio, digital channels forecasting etc.

Disclaimer: For privacy purposes, Search Console captures only non sensitive queries that led to organic impressions of your website.

How to do it:

First step is to prepare a list with all the possible brand terms. To do that, you should open your search console and download past data, at least for the last 12 months. Once you have the excel with all your queries, you have to go through these, one by one (unfortunately this is a manually process) and identify those that represent your brand or other company info, as for example your address, telephone or even the owner's name for a local business. Last but not least, make sure to include any misspellings of your brand.

Now that you gather your brand terms, the next action is to upload them on Google Data Studio. That said, you should create a custom field "Query Type" in your data source (Search Console) and define the brand /generic keywords. Below is the formula for the custom field:


WHEN (REGEXP_MATCH(Query,".*my digital lab.*|.*digitalab.*|.*mdlab.*")) THEN "Brand Query"

ELSE "Generic Query"


The above field will label all the queries that contain my digital lab, digitalab, mdlab as "Brand Query" and anything else as "Generic Query" (or Non-Brand if you want). You can use it by replacing the above queries with your brand terms.

How to get value:

It is essential to your SEO (and even SEM) strategy to know how your users find you on search engines. The keywords they use, demonstrate 1) different search intent and 2) in what stage of their journey are.

In general, people use branded keywords when they are familiar with your brand and / or know your products. On the other hand, they use generic keywords to do some research and find answers to their questions. This type of keywords tend to be more competitive because users have more options to get their answers from wide variety of businesses. And of course your competitors could appear in these search results.

  • People might use more generic keywords while they are higher in the conversion funnel (prospecting).

  • People search for brand keywords when they are lower in the conversion funnel and ready to make a purchase (remarketing).

Generic Keywords

If you have keywords with higher CTR than the average, then you should enhance your content creation and content promotion around these keywords. There is a lot room for improvement to reach more new customers targeting these keywords (you should have in mind that the generic keywords tend to have lower CTRs compared to brand terms.).

If there is a drop in impressions for specific keywords, in most of the cases, other websites and maybe your direct competitors do better job than you, offering more compelling results to the users. You should evaluate if these keywords are important to your website (do they drive significant amount of traffic?) and if it's possible to compete against big players.

If your ranking is high on generic keywords, your content's value is growing. It is a good signal that shows the impact of your SEO efforts, however you should not give so much attention to the actual average position number, but in differences over time.

Branded Keywords

With regards to branded keywords, the things are more clear. If your brand is getting more impressions over time, then you are in the right path. Most probably more users are looking for you and your products.

Although you should always look the organic trend in combination with your SEM. For instance you should know how your bidding strategy affect your organic brand results. Ask yourself: What is your ads impressions share on your brand? Are you decreasing your ad spent on brand terms over time? Do you have more competitors bidding on your brand this year?