|Anchor text in internal links|
Lets say WidgetCo has found great popularity among the masses, and a lot of folks want to strut their stuff in WidgetCo apparel and accessories. So we create a site to sell WidgetGo Gear.
For the anchor text in internal (navbar) links, would it be best to use "WidgetCo Hats", "WidgetCo Key Rings", "WidgetCo T-Shirts", etc.? Or would it be better to just say "Hats", "Key Rings", "T-Shirts"?
Brand + Product Name
It would be very difficult to rank well for just "Hats", "T-Shirts" etc. So by adding brand name you will have a much better chance of ranking
If and only if you have the right to use the brand name in that manner.
Are you "WidgetCo" or are you a reseller, an affiliate, a licensee, or is there some other relationship.
Read the legal documents and determine whether you have the right to use the brand that way if it is not your brand.
We have gotten in trouble in the past for using trademarked names even though we sell those companies products. It's happened so much that now we don't even touch it. We've actually gotten cease and desist legal mail from the company who's products we sell.
Other than the legal aspects, there are two things to consider. First, is the anchor text, where it will help you out in the rankings.
Second is how bad it will make your page look, and possibly how overuse of a keyword might negatively affect your rankings.
If is seems overdone, then it probably is. If it seems reasonable, and you have any legal issues squared away, then go for it.
|If and only if you have the right to use the brand name in that manner. |
Absolutely - without saying. I had assumed that the brand was his :)
|Second is how bad it will make your page look, and possibly how overuse of a keyword might negatively affect your rankings. |
I agree with BigDave. If you have say 10 WidgetCo products. every other word will be a WidgetCo which screems spam and can also look very unprofessional.
If you have to do it then I would try to spead WidgetCo out in your menu
I am sorry if I didnt get you completely, use the anchor text for which you are optimizing and link to the page which represents it,
example, I have a site selling widgets, widgets are of three types
1) blue widgets(blue.html)
2) red widgets (red.html)
3) green widgets.(green.html)
From blue widgets(blue.html) I can link to green widgets(green.html) by saying see the other form of widgets
1) <a href=" green.html ">green widget</a>
...... am I right on path
re: the legal stuff:
So if I'm selling a Bony DVD Player could I possibly get into legal trouble by using the brand "Bony" in my links?
Do "Bony" have the right to force me not to include their name on my website?
|Do "Bony" have the right to force me not to include their name on my website? |
I would imagine the answer to this lies in whatever contract you have with Bony. If the contract does not explicitly state that you are permitted to use their brand name for reselling, then no - you technically do not have the right to use their name.
Some companies don't mind it because it grows their brand name even further. Some of the bigger companies who would have a distribution quality control (i.e. divisions of the company that make sure not any bedroom webmaster can redistribute their products) probably won't allow you to use their brand name because they want to maintain the brand name quality so as only to have it associated it well known quality sites.
In short, if you do not explicitly have permission to use their brand name, then no you are not permitted to use it, particularly not for commercial purposes - posts on a forum or something would probably be a different matter.
The "WidgetCo" I allude to is a three-word-phrase. It would only be a five-page site, with a name of "threewordphrasegear.com" or something of that sort, and "three word phrase" would certainly occur several times in the body text of each page anyway.. As it is only five page site, I doubt that use of the phrase in all five navbar links would be SEO overkill, but being a three-word-phrase, I do think it might *look* a little bit silly, so I want to avoid doing it that way if practical.
The point that it would be difficult to rank well for "hats" as a generic term is well taken, but my concern is whether it would be difficult to rank for "three-word-phrase hats" without using "three word phrase" in the links.
[hehe this post itself sounds like spam for "three word phrase"]
|If the contract does not explicitly state that you are permitted to use their brand name for reselling, then no - you technically do not have the right to use their name. |
This is quite simply wrong, at least in the US.
Trademark law is in place to give a company protection agains confusion about their brand.
You cannot imply in any way that your website is "Bony", or even represents "Bony", unless you have some sort of contract with them that states such. The more you have that term scattered around your site, the more care you have to take to point out that you are not Bony.
As you are suggesting using it in a commercial sense, to be extra safe, you need to include the symbols for whatever type of mark they have, and you should probably put a notice at the bottom of the page about trademarks belong to their respective owners, and that your site does not represent that they are in ay way officially connected with them.
You also have to make darn sure that you do not put any Boshiba brand DVD players on the Bony page. That would definitely lead to causing confusion in the marketplace.
Another major no-no is to use someone else's trademark as part of your domain name in an attempt to get some of their traffic.
There are lots of ways to get in trouble for trademark infringement. But owning a trademark does not give you the power that a lot of people think it does. And a lot of C&D letters are sent out when there is no infringement. Trademark control is tempered by free speech rights.
With your last post, it sure looks like you are going to cause "confusion in the marketplace" by using their tradmark in your domain name.
I suggest that you start by reading the coverage of trademarks at bitlaw. Then going and talking to an IP attorney before proceeding with your plan.
Using widgetco on your site when specifically referring to widgetco products is okay (if done properly), but using their trademark in your domain name without explicit permission is begging for trouble.
Here is a paragraph from an agreement with one of the main suppliers of widgets. Similar language is included in many such agreements.
There is additional language stating that you can only use the creative given to you through their system.
Each party hereby covenants and agrees that the trademarks, trade names, service marks, copyrights and other proprietary rights of the other party are and shall remain the sole and exclusive property of that party and neither party shall hold itself out as having any ownership rights with respect thereto or, except as specifically granted hereunder, any other rights therein.
In addition, except as expressly permitted hereunder, each party hereby covenants and agrees that it will make no use of the trademarks, trade names, service marks, copyrights and other proprietary rights of the other party. Any and all goodwill associated with any such rights shall inure directly and exclusively to the benefit of the owner thereof.
I am an "authorized merchant" for a product line and for the 1st year & 1/2 used the brand name-keyword method in my nav bar and in my title and other tags(with permission). This was good and returned decent rankings and the site was moderately successful. I did notice that the keyword searches "without" the brand name, did not rank me nearly as well. Brand name included, I owned the first spots, but looked at the pages competing and found say: 18,000 or 64,000 or 12,000 depending on what term I searched. I took out the brand name, searched again and found my keywords were competitive with many manufacturers with the same or similar products. These searches (sans brand name) were showing loads of competing pages 180,000...172,000....182,000 and into a cumulative # of millions (considering plurals other concoctions)competing. I made a scarey decision and decided the action was out there with the "big boys" who could afford "in house SEO" or hire the very best. Through a growth process of SEO (school of hard knocks), links, directory listings (important IMHO) and playing with tags, etc....I can say that I have been able "grow" traffic at an unbelievable rate by removing the brand or placing it further back in my tags and off my nav bar. You only need a half dozen (give or take) top listings for highly competitive terms to get a flood of traffic. You might say "it's not as relevant" and I would say it is because the title & description tag (important) tell the customer everything he wants to know to click through. I have been fortunate, I know it's tough to abandon "bony widgets" and take the plunge into optimizing for "widgets". Taking the plunge into "bigger ponds"? It's a call you have to make?
It is important to remember that what you quote are portions of a contract. If you are not a party to that contract, then it is Trademark Law that applies.
Often times, owners of a Mark will try and post claims like that on their websites, but they are not binding on the general public.
Just because they are not binding, does not mean that they cannot send you a C&D or even file a lawsuit, but that does not mean that they will win the suit.
If I buy WidgetCo items to sell at the local Costco, there are no contracts with WidgetCo involved, therfore it is Tradmark Law that applies.