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Last month, Google introduced a new group of analytics data in Google My Business Insights called “branded” searches. Google defined them as “Customers who find your listing searching for a brand related to your business.” Joy Hawkins met with Google and had a chance to clarify with examples what these types of searches are.

Joy posted in the Local Search Forums these specific examples of what is a branded search versus a direct search, etc. She said:
“State Farm” returns a 3-pack for several locations for State Farm. This is a branded search.

“State Farm Bob Hagen” just returns a knowledge panel for that specific location. That’s a direct search.

“Starbucks Near Me” returns a 3-pack with several locations – this is a branded search.

“Starbucks on Mission College Blvd” returns just a single, specific Starbucks location. This is a direct search.

For more examples, check out the thread.
I hope this clarifies things for some of you.
Forum discussion at Local Search Forums.

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