5 Reasons Legacy Brands Struggle With SEO (and What to Do About Them)


What are we talking about when we speak about a old-fashioned brand

For the purpose of this article, the phrase “legacy brand” applies to companies with a significant connection to the product they offer, and could have in time past been the most popular supplier of that product. It could be that they were well-known in the early 20th century and that they were the pioneers and leaders in their industry in the beginning of the widespread use of web-based services by consumers. Some instances (that Distilled has never worked with or been approached by) are:

  • Wells Fargo (US)
  • Craigslist (US)
  • Tesco (UK)

These are selective, extreme examples of the legacy brands However, all three and the majority of those that fall into this description have experienced a significant drop in the past five years in the sense of visibility organically (confirmed through Sistrix the choice of tool Your tool of choice could differ). It’s a regular problem for established, large websites with a peak in the years 2013 and 2014, and not achieving those levels again.

It’s important to remember that stagnation isn’t always the only scenario that could be possibleSometimes, brands may be growing, but at a degree that is not as high as the potentialyou think from their widespread offline presence.

The question is what is the reason for this to keep taking place?

Reason 1: Brand

The biggest obstacle that stands in the path of a brand’s effectiveness could be that of the name itself. It may sound to be a somewhat unusual choice — but we’ve already established that the businesses that we’re referring to are huge known, well-known names. This in and of itself would aid the companies in the SEO field, wouldn’t it?

However, the thing is that even though, a lot of these famous names in the world of entertainment are known however they’re not the single-stop stores were in the past.

Below is how the above brand name examples perform on Google:

Other prominent, clearly vertical-oriented brand names in the UK, in general, are not faring as well in the search engine results for brands:

There are a variety of reasons to think this might happen — and we’ll look at a few of them in the future — however, a couple of notable ones are:

  • The lack of confidence — especially for companies that were early internet giants They may have lost sight of the necessity of enhancing their image and brand recognition.
  • There are more and more credible competitors. When you were the sole qualified operator, which the majority of these brands were, you got the entire pie. Now, you’re required to take it all in.
  • The majority of people trust search engines. In a majority of instances, the ubiquitous brands fall as the term “generic” is growing.

Rightmove along with Zoopla have been the two largest brands in this market which have existed for a long time. There’s only one line which is rising, however it’s the generic phrase “houses for sale.”

How can I go about addressing this? to fix this?

In essence simply, take action and get a start! Many incumbents are slow in implementing items like top-of-the-line content or produce low-effort, extremely boring posts on social media posts (I’ve previously written on some of these strategies below.) To be fair, it’s easy to understand why these methods and channels will likely offer the lowest measurable return. But leaving a gap higher in your funnel could be a risk in particular when you’re a known brand. This opens the door for lesser players to fill the gap in the market — for practically nothing.

2. Reason 2 Reason 2: Tech debt

I’m sure that many of you who read this have been through how difficult it is to have technical changesespecially those that require more effort which are carried out by large, more established organisations. The reason for this is the complexity of bureaucratic processes, aging and highly customized platforms, risk-aversion and, especially for SEO the inability to gain senior support for what are often relatively abstract changes that have no certain reward.

How can I go about addressing this? to fix this?

At Distilled We face these problems quite frequently. I’ve seen queues of developers that can stretch for decades. I’ve also observed organisations that are in no way able to alter some of the information that is most essential that is on their websites, such as opening hours or title tags. Actually, it was precisely this problem that led to the creation of the ODN system a couple of years back as a method to overcome technical restrictions and show the benefits of doing it.

There are alternatives that aren’t as heavy-duty that are available. GTM is a viable option to make a variety of modifications as a last resort however, with no measurement element. CDN-level solutions such as Cloudflare’s Edge Workers are also beginning to gain momentum in this SEO community.

At some point it’s important to address the root of the issue by making headway within the political sphere of the organisation. There’s a another article that could be posted or even more and it all boils down to being heard without compromising any person. I’ve observed focussing on the negative is often the most effective approach within large bureaucracies that are risk-averse that are essentially feeding off the risk-aversion aspect itself and also shouting out any success even if they’re small.

3. Not updating strategies due to long-standing, practice that is ingrained

The reason is that in a sense, the issue is tied back to risk-aversion and politics. After all, brands that have been around for a long time have a lot at stake. A particular aspect I’ve observed in larger companies is the ongoing campaigns and strategies which haven’t led to better rankings or increased revenue in many years.

One conversation I had with a senior SEO from a major brand made me a bit perplexed. I can recall him telling me something like “we know this campaign isn’t right for us strategically, but we can’t get buy-in for anything else, so it’s this or lose the budget”. Fantastic.

This kind of situation can be commonplace when top decision-makers aren’t sure about their staffusually the culprit is a CMO or similar executive, who hasn’t had a dip in SEO in a 10 years or more. If they do, they’re not pleasantly surprised to learn they’re SEO team hasn’t been buying any new links this week, and hasn’t been for a while. The reaction is typical: “No wonder the results are so poor!”

How can I go about addressing this? to fix this?

It’s possible that you’ll need to be able to tolerate this behavior in the short-term. This doesn’t mean that you must begin (or keep) purchasing links, but it’s a wise idea to be sure that you have similar activities in your plan as you are proving the return on investment of your initiatives.

In the medium-term, if you are able to invite senior executives to conferences (I strongly would recommend SearchLove even though I might be biased) You can provide them with articles and other content “they may find interesting” and take them under the hood in stories of the successes of the other programs you’ve managed achieve and you’ll be able moving them in the proper direction.

4.”Race to the bottom

It’s reasonable to say that as time passes, it’s made it easier to begin an online company with a fairly well-organized website. It’s been my experience that I’ve seen in recent times that new businesses don’t have to compete with the long-running juggernauts of the past such as Domain Authority to hit the top positions.

As a consequence, it’s now normal to see shrewd young businesses growing rapidly and, at the minimum increasing the apparent quality of competition, where previously a older company might have enjoyed a supremacy in the area of basic competence.

This gets even more complex when it comes to price. Many SEOs are in agreement that SERP’s behavior plays into ranking, and it’s easy to envision old businessesthat are disproportionately positioned to possess a premium edge, struggling to get clicks in comparison. well-priced rivals. Google doesn’t understand or care about having a high-quality product or service They’ll just put your name in with companies that compete only on price in the same way.

Can I take action to fix this?

In my opinion as a matter of fact, there are two primary strategies. One is to use your size to eliminate smaller players (for instance, you’re disproportionately choosing keywords that they’ve discovered a space in your defense) The second is, in essence conversion rate optimization.

Simple strategies such as sorting a landing page according to price (ascending) and having click-friendly titles that have a focused on value USP (e.g. free delivery) or well-targeted (and non-overdone) post-sales emails to keep customers engaged -each goes a large part in reducing the lure of a less expensive or more hacker-friendly competitor.

Reason 5: Super-aggregators (Amazon, Google)

In a many verticals, the pie is becoming smaller which is the that the most dominant players will face a decreasing slice.

Some clear examples:

  • Local packs degrading local pages of landing
  • Google Flights, Google Jobs, etc. is threatening specialist websites
  • Amazon is taking a large share of the e-commerce search

How can I go about addressing this? to fix this?

There are two different angles in this case, and one is a much more difficult to grasp than the second. The first one is like the other options I’ve already mentioned — go higher up the funnel to secure in your business before it ever happens to your customer who is searching your name and getting Amazon or Google ahead of you. This is merely a mitigation strategy However, it is a deterrent.

The other option, which is likely to be a nightmare for the majority of companies, is to get into the trap of the devil. If you ever get the chance to be a data partner for a Google or Amazon product, you might be wise to take a step back from your pride and embrace the opportunity. You could be the sole one left in a couple of years. And if you don’t get it, it’ll be another person.

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