On June 15th, 2009, Google AdWords is finally lifting its ban on brand-name search phrases and allowing customers to make bids on heretofore exempt labels (under limited terms and conditions, of course). This means that it’s time to re-evaluate your pay-per-click (PPC) keyword database to see how the addition of brand names can bring additional traffic to your Google listing. For example, if you’re in the business of selling motor vehicles, you might be able to spruce up your tagline with invocations of Volkswagen or Mercedes-Benz instead of just, well, “cars.”
Clearly, the advantages of these new conditions are incontrovertible. Resellers are suddenly able to compete on a heightened scale by more explicitly stating what they’re selling, while increasing competition with brand owners. Why did Google suddenly decide to make the change? According to AdAge.com, the company decided that allowing brand name bids would improve the overall quality of ads and allow them to be more highly targeted. Google also claims that competitiveness will offer consumers “more choice.” And it aligns the search engine empire’s policies with the more lenient restrictions already evinced on Yahoo and Microsoft. Of course, it must be acknowledged that Google expects to see significant profit from this decision—even if they aren’t blatantly advertising the fact as motive.
Security screening on keyword bidding is expected to be the tightest it’s ever been, with restrictions falling primarily on links that don’t land on a direct purchase page for the product and those that advertise competitors’ products or counterfeits. The brand name search bids are limited to the United States, as they may infringe about the trademark legal restrictions of countries overseas.
As the mid-summer deadline approaches, web marketing strategists are surely spinning their wheels, eager to reassess their current PPC structure and refinance their overall online advertising directive. If you own a Google PPC account, be sure that your online advertising agents are prepared to keep your business on the periphery by updating your keyword listings and bids to reflect these new changes. That way, you too can start benefitting from the imminent new branding guidelines for Google AdWords.