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What Is Brand Bidding for E-Commerce Sellers (And Should You Do It)?

Written by
Vanessa Hung
January 25, 2024

Are you struggling to make your brand stand out in the crowded online marketplace? The world of Pay-Per-Click (PPC) advertising is rapidly evolving, with 'brand bidding' emerging as a game-changing strategy.

This article will shed light on what brand bidding is and how it can potentially catapult your brand visibility and revenue generation. Ready to cut through the noise? Let's jump right in!

What Is Brand Bidding?

Brand bidding refers to the practice of bidding on keywords related to a specific brand in order to drive traffic and redirect potential customers to your own website or landing page through paid search strategies.

Definition of Brand Bidding

Brand bidding finds its roots in the world of digital advertising, specifically pay-per-click (PPC) campaigns. It involves advertisers purposely targeting and bidding on branded keywords, or search terms that include a particular brand name or close variations of it.

This strategy can apply to your own brand's keywords with an aim to dominate search engine results and deflect traffic from competitor ads. Alternatively, it may involve bidding on competitors' brand names to divert their prospective customers towards your products or services.

The purpose is to leverage the reputation and customer base of established brands for increased visibility and potential conversions. However, this approach carries potential risks including trademark infringement concerns which need careful consideration before implementation.

Examples of Brand Bidding

Brand bidding can manifest in numerous ways, each with unique advantages and implications. Here are some examples:

  1. Bidding on Your Company's Name: Companies often bid on their own brand name to dominate search results and deter competitors. This strategy is common within PPC advertising.
  2. Competitor Bidding: Bids may be placed on competitor's keywords to redirect traffic. This aggressive tactic can boost visibility but risks trademark infringement.
  3. Affiliated Brand Bidding: If a company has various brands under its management, it may choose to bid on these affiliate names.
  4. Generic Keyword Bidding: Some businesses bid on general industry keywords related to their brand for broad market exposure.
  5. Long-Tail Keyword Bidding: Others prefer long-tail keywords targeting specific niche markets.
  6. Geo-Targeted Brand Bidding: Brands with location-based services often employ geo-targeted bids to attract local customers.

Bidding on Your Own Brand

Bidding on your own brand in PPC advertising is a strategy that allows businesses to protect their trademark and maintain control over the top spot in search results. It gives them an edge over competitors who might be targeting their branded keywords.

When done effectively, it can direct more traffic to your website, increase conversions, and keep customer acquisition costs lower. Despite some common misconceptions, there's no rule against bidding on your own brand name in platforms like Google Ads or Clickbank.

However, it requires strategic planning to make sure you're not inflating costs or diverting traffic away from organic search results unnecessarily.

Bidding on a Third Party's Brand

Bidding on a third party's brand can be a contentious topic in the world of online advertising. It involves targeting keywords associated with another company's brand and bidding on them to redirect traffic to your own website or paid campaigns.

While this strategy may seem tempting, it can also lead to potential legal implications, including trademark infringement concerns. Therefore, before engaging in this type of bidding, it is crucial to thoroughly research and understand the limitations and risks involved.

Trademark Infringement Concerns

Trademark infringement concerns arise when engaging in brand bidding. This involves bidding on a third party's brand or even your own brand in paid search campaigns. It is important to be cautious, as this can potentially infringe on trademark rights and lead to legal consequences.

To avoid such issues, it is crucial to conduct proper research and ensure that the keywords used are not violating any trademarks. Taking steps to protect your own brand name is also essential, as competitors may try to bid on your brand terms to redirect traffic away from your website.

By staying informed about trademark laws and implementing careful strategies, you can prevent trademark infringement concerns and safeguard your online presence.

Should You Do Brand Bidding?

Consider the pros and cons of brand bidding and carefully evaluate whether it aligns with your business goals and competitive landscape.

Pros and Cons of Brand Bidding

Brand bidding does come with its own sets of benefits and drawbacks. Here's a closer look at the pros and cons:

Considerations for Your Business

When deciding whether or not to engage in brand bidding, there are several important considerations for your business. First and foremost, you need to weigh the pros and cons of brand bidding. While it can increase brand visibility and drive targeted traffic to your website, it can also come with inflated costs and potential legal implications if done improperly.

Additionally, conducting a competitive analysis is crucial before embarking on any brand bidding efforts. Understanding what your competitors are doing in terms of paid search strategies and trademark protection will help you develop a more effective approach.

Finally, it's essential to carefully optimize your brand campaigns by choosing the right keywords and implementing a strategic framework that aligns with your overall marketing goals.

Competitive Analysis

Competitive analysis is a crucial step when considering brand bidding. It involves researching and evaluating your competitors' strategies, strengths, and weaknesses in the market.

By conducting a competitive analysis, you can gain valuable insights into how other brands are utilizing paid search strategies and targeting keywords related to your industry or niche.

This information allows you to identify opportunities for differentiation, optimize your own brand campaign, and stay ahead of the competition in terms of online advertising and brand management.

How To Approach Brand Bidding

Develop a strategic framework by setting objectives, conducting market research, and considering implementation options for your paid campaigns to optimize your brand bidding strategy.

Setting Objectives

Setting objectives is a crucial step in approaching brand bidding. Before diving into paid campaigns, it's important to define what you hope to achieve. Whether it's increasing brand awareness, driving more traffic to your website, or targeting specific keywords, clearly outlining your goals will help guide your strategy.

By setting objectives early on, you can ensure that your brand bidding efforts are focused and aligned with the overall direction of your business.

Conducting Market Research

To ensure the success of your brand bidding strategy, conducting thorough market research is crucial. This involves gathering data and insights about your target audience, their online behavior, and their preferences.

By understanding your audience's needs and interests, you can identify relevant keywords to use in your brand bidding campaigns. Market research also helps you uncover potential competitors who might be bidding on similar keywords or targeting the same audience.

Armed with this information, you can make informed decisions when setting objectives for your brand bidding campaigns and develop a strategic framework that maximizes your chances of success.

Developing a Strategic Framework

Developing a strategic framework is crucial when it comes to brand bidding. This involves creating a well-thought-out plan that outlines your objectives, target audience, and messaging.

Market research plays a significant role in understanding your competition and identifying opportunities for growth. By developing a clear strategy, you can effectively implement your brand bidding campaigns and optimize them for success.

It's important to consider factors such as budget allocation, keyword selection, and ad placement to ensure maximum visibility and results.

Implementation Options

There are various options to consider when implementing brand bidding as part of your paid search strategy. Here are some ways you can approach it:


Brand bidding can be a powerful tool for driving targeted traffic to your website. However, it comes with risks and legal implications that you need to consider before deciding if it's right for your business.

By conducting thorough market research and developing a strategic framework, you can optimize your brand campaigns and protect your brand name while staying competitive in the online advertising landscape.

FAQs on Brand Bidding

1. How do I determine an appropriate budget for brand bidding campaigns?

Setting a budget for brand bidding should be based on your advertising goals, historical data if available, competitive landscape, and the value of conversions for your business. Establishing a cost per acquisition (CPA) that is profitable is usually a good starting point.

2. Can brand bidding impact my organic search rankings?

Brand bidding does not directly affect organic search rankings, but it can increase overall visibility, potentially improving click-through rates for organic listings by reinforcing brand presence on the page.

3. What measures can I take to protect my brand from competitors’ brand bidding?

To protect your brand, you can register trademarks, create comprehensive search campaigns on your brand terms, and monitor PPC auctions to ensure competitors are not using your brand inappropriately. Legal measures may be pursued if trademark infringement occurs.

4. How do I track the success of my brand bidding campaigns?

Track success by monitoring key performance indicators (KPIs) such as click-through rate (CTR), conversion rate, cost per click (CPC), return on ad spend (ROAS), and overall return on investment (ROI). Utilize analytics tools to measure these metrics.

5. Is it legal to bid on a competitor's brand terms?

Bidding on competitor's brand terms can be legal, but it depends on trademark laws and the policies of the advertising platforms you use. Avoid using trademarked terms in ad copy without permission to reduce legal risks.

6. How often should I review and adjust my brand bidding strategy?

Review and adjust your strategy regularly, at least monthly, or more frequently if you are in a highly competitive or dynamic market. Keeping your strategy responsive to market changes and campaign performance data is key to maintaining effectiveness.

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