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Brand Name In Title Tag - How Important Is It For SEO?

     
12:23 am on Oct 24, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Looking through a bunch of sites in my niche, I started to notice that the big boys all have their brand name at the end of their title tag. I also noticed that WebmasterWorld has their brand name in many of their title's and as I dug into other SEO sites, I saw that many of them also used the brand in their title tag.

Is this good SEO? Or is it from the corporate overlords to re-inforce the brand? I know Google gives weight to brands now a days. Is the title tag branding helping SE's in the branding aglo?
1:43 am on Oct 24, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Personally I think Brand on titles are good for the following

1. Brand Exposure (User point of view)
2. Reputation Management (Google point of view)

So I'd keep the brand in the title of the website. Where? It depends what your main focus is, User or Google
1:54 am on Oct 24, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Here's one factor to consider. If your brand is well recognized, then including it in the title element can increase clicks. If your brand is not well known, then including it may discourage clicks. And a good CTR on your SERP impressions can improve your ranking over time.
1:59 am on Oct 24, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Thanks louieramos!

I was having a discussion with other webmasters in my niche (real estate) and they don't think it should be in the tag. I did a lot of research on this before submitting this post. Some say that the repetitive title is bad for SEO but good for branding.


As an SEO it's duplicated titles and many times is truncated by Google, so what's the point?

For building a brand every time you come up in the top 10 you get to display your brand (if it shows up under the 65 characters).

But is it damaging my optimized content because of the 1000's of pages with the same thing in the title?

Does it specifically help with the brand centric algo implemented over the last 1 to 1.5 years?

I want some technical SEO thoughts on this. Is there part of the algo that will notice your branding both on page, in title, in meta, that will help rankings? Or is it just branding?
2:02 am on Oct 24, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Thanks Tedster, really appreciate your feedback. I need to test the CTR if I decide to change things. I have my branding at the end of the tag (where I think it should be except for brand searches and possibly homepage).

Do you have any experience where it actually effected serp ranking of a site when added/removed? There is an article on Search engine Journal about a new SEO at Techcrunch who removed Techcrunch from the title tag and serp's improved. Any experience with this?
7:22 am on Oct 24, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Quoted:
removed Techcrunch from the title tag and serp's improved

Probably it depends also on sales data. If you use Brand name as Title it will be less space for marketing data. Do not use more than 4 Title words...One Title word can be two words.
2:00 pm on Oct 24, 2011 (gmt 0)

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I have always been inclined to include the brand in my page titles, I never lead with the brand as your titles will look repetetive but having it after a product name for example works fine.
2:20 pm on Oct 24, 2011 (gmt 0)

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I usually take the name off all but the home page and things such as the About page and so on.

However, when I *do* use a brand name, if the company I'm working with uses a (tm) or (r) with its name, I make sure I include that. (the real symbol; ™ or ®, not the ones I entered here, of course)
2:22 pm on Oct 24, 2011 (gmt 0)

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WWND?

If you're trying to determine branding issues, just ask yourself, what would Nike do? Because if Google is looking at brands, that's the kind of site they're going to look towards.

And sure enough, Nike has their brand name in the title tags.

Do you have any experience where it actually effected serp ranking of a site when added/removed?

This doesn't seem like the type of thing that would have a huge impact - and if it does, I wouldn't trust that this impact would be continuous. Here today, gone tomorrow.
2:34 pm on Oct 24, 2011 (gmt 0)

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s. If your brand is not well known, then including it may discourage clicks.

Do we know this for sure?

My company name isn't a 'brand', but I'd like to think that my company name is recognizable enough that it'd encourage clicks. But perhaps I'm fooling myself.
3:07 pm on Oct 24, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Ive just gone the opposite way in tryin to recover from panda, my thinking is the more words in the title then the more keywords are diluted.
4:33 pm on Oct 24, 2011 (gmt 0)

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recognizable enough that it'd encourage clicks

If that's the case, then you've crossed the magic threshold, wheel. I normally advise netmeg's approach until it seems like the business is near the threshold. It really is a judgment call and not easy to quantify. Things like navigational searches, social mentions, Twitter followers, Likes etc can give some quantitative feel for whether the Brand Name has become an asset.

It's easy enough to experiment with a not-too-critical page title or two to see what happens.
11:50 pm on Oct 24, 2011 (gmt 0)

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It's too easy and cheap to fake it. Anyone can spend zero dollars and use a page template. Your name in the title tag is an extremely low quality brand signal.

It's a new SEO myth that Google looks for brand signals.

Cutts:

Inside Google, at least within search ranking team, we donít really think about brands.

We think about words like trust, authority, reputation, PageRank, high quality. Google philosophy on search results has been the same pretty much forever.
9:16 am on Oct 28, 2011 (gmt 0)

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I don't have my brand name in the title tags on my site. I was thinking about adding it yesterday but I didn't have the time.

Today I did a search and find that Google has added it for me anyway. So instead of displaying "My Title" in the SERP i have "My Title - My Brand".

Tried a few different searches and the brand name addition appears about 50% of the time. I also see it for other sites in my niche.

Looks like Google is experimenting on my behalf and I'll take that as a positive signal for my brand.
11:47 am on Oct 28, 2011 (gmt 0)

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you can have a look at your analytics. Based on how often people look for your brand you can decide to make it a title tag or not.

if you are selling nike shoes, you better use your brandname (nikeshoponline.demo in your title tag!)

If nobody has ever heard of you and you are selling a one time product ( not much need to return ) focus on your USP! you only have 65 characters
11:56 am on Oct 28, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Agree with Mark Roach - Google also started putting my site name in the title. They didn't do it very well so I now do it for them the way I want it to appear.

I think the reason G started doing it was to distinguish
many of the same titles in the SERPS. Lots of sites, me included, just put "Build Blue Widgets" in the title and the SERPS looked a bit silly with 5 of the top ten having the same title.

And, agreed again, if Google wants to add site names to the title who am I to disagree with them.
2:52 pm on Oct 28, 2011 (gmt 0)

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If your brand is not well known, and as Tedster pointed out might cause a lower CTR when matched against known brands, you can always load up Google Webmaster Tools and add your number one keyword where the site name would be. Google believes your site to be about this keyword and it has the least chance of being found irrelevant.

e.g. 'OEM and Aftermarket Parts - Widgets'

Just remember not to add this word to page titles when you create them or you'll be repeating it.