How Search Engine Ranking Impacts Brand Reputation

You probably already know how important it is for your website to rank high in search results on Google and other search engines. The higher your rank within search engine result pages (SERPs), the more visible your business is to consumers. And the more visible your business is, the more likely you are to convert visitors into paying customers. However, did you know that the information accompanying searches can actually impact the reputation of your brand?

Understanding the People Also Ask Feature

Searches performed on Google not only return results based on the terms or phrase, they also help users find other related information. The People Also Ask (PAA) box is populated with additional questions related to the initial query. For example, searching for a company will populate related questions that other users have asked.

PAA boxes are most common in searches that include a question word, meaning where, what, why, when, and who. While it depends on the keywords being queried, PAA boxes have been known to populate in more than half of searches performed on mobile devices, and nearly half of search results performed on desktops.

How PAA Can Impact Your Brand Reputation

Given the ubiquity of PAA boxes in SERPs, it’s easy to understand how they can have an effect on brands. It largely depends on the questions populated. Some questions might focus on practical info, such as hours of operation or the location of a business. Others are slightly more impactful, and not in a good way.

For example, consider the impact a seemingly innocent query of “Is (company) legitimate?” or “Is (company) bad?” While there may be no basis for these queries, they can still have an effect on consumers. A person performs a search about your business, sees a questionable PAA box populated, and suddenly has misgivings. At this point, one can see how a consumer might choose to go with a competitor without any further research into the matter.

How You Can Improve the Reputation of Your Brand

Google and other search engines are notoriously tight-lipped when it comes to SERPs and the criteria they use to rank sites or populate features like PAA boxes. However, there are some general ways you can boost the reputation of your brand and limit the impact of PAA queries:

  • Use social media to solicit testimonials and reviews from happy customers.
  • Expand the online presence of your business. Along with your website and social media, make sure you’re represented on Yelp, Google My Business, and the Better Business Bureau.
  • Upload images of your business, staff, products, and more to establish legitimacy.
  • When you receive complaints on social media, Google My Business, Yelp, and other platforms, respond graciously and quickly. Do what you can to publicly remedy the issue.

Your business’s brand identity is essential for lasting success. People will develop perceptions of your brand, both good and bad, which is why having the right support is so crucial. Our branding gurus at can help you identify the best marketing channels for your business while also designing an effective internet marketing strategy. Let’s talk about your brand today.