Marketing for IT Companies > Market Research > Brand Awareness of Custom Software Development Companies

Brand Awareness of Custom Software Development Companies

During a strategic marketing audit, when you don’t have the real data on the revenues of each and all your competitors in the custom software development outsourcing industry, it’s possible to rely on the number of employees in competitors’ companies (“market share by employees”). However, the number of employees is not a single and comprehensive sign of a company’s profitability. It’s also essential to consider the company’s ability to sell at market price or even above. I personally believe that you can close a deal faster with a client from a particular location if they recognize your brand. You also can grow more intensively not just at the expense of the number of employees but using a high-price strategy. That’s why I recommend calculating brand awareness of your company and competitors in those locations where your clients are.

Key Takeaways

  • Usually, the more staff a company employs, the more recognizable it is. Surprisingly, it doesn’t always work that way. Sometimes, a company with the same number of employees as yours, or even fewer, has a better-known brand and probably earns more than you do.
  • Comparing your brand awareness with competitors in the location where your clients are, you need to narrow down the list of competitors. Thus, you can analyze, at the first stage, only those competitors who are better at marketing, all else being equal.

Methodology

  • There are several approaches to define brand awareness: brand awareness surveys, the number of social media followers, branded search volume, etc… We’re going to focus only on the branded search volume.
  • Before the start, we need a list of competitors to compare. For offshore custom software development companies, it’s better to have several lists, divided by countries.  At the previous stage of our research, we defined who our competitors were in the particular country using the “market share by employees” approach
  • Google’s Keyword Planner (KPT) tool is used to get keywords’ search volume, narrowed by location (the USA). The names of the companies from the list wll serve as the keywords.

#

Company

Branded keywords

Avg. monthly searches (summed, USA, Google Keyword Planner, Aug 2021

Brand awareness / USA

Staff in Belarus, Sept 2021

Staff, Total, Sept 2021

1

Epam

epam, epam systems

15300

68.06%

13400

48915

2

Sciencesoft

sciencesoft, science soft, sciencesoft usa corporation

610

2.71%

471

569

3

Exadel

exadel, exadel inc

530

2.36%

598

1170

4

Itechart group

itechart, itechart group

500

2.22%

2007

2200

5

Altoros

altoros

390

1.73%

261

382

6

Ciklum

ciklum

390

1.73%

61

3400

7

Coherent solutions

coherent solutions

320

1.42%

351

455

8

Itransition

itransition

260

1.16%

1280

1548

9

SaM Solutions

SaM Solutions

210

0.93%

419

640

10

Oxagile

oxagile

210

0.93%

337

383

11

Softeq

softeq, softeq development corporation

190

0.85%

247

291

12

Intetics inc

intetics, intetics inc

190

0.85%

232

638

13

LeverX

LeverX

170

0.76%

342

435

14

a1qa

a1qa

140

0.62%

465

521

15

Vironit

vironit

140

0.62%

135

144

16

Pixelplex

pixelplex

140

0.62%

84

92

17

N-ix

n ix

140

0.62%

7

1407

18

Innowise group

innowise, innowise group

120

0.53%

494

507

19

IBA Group

IBA Group

110

0.49%

1255

1432

20

Syberry

syberry

110

0.49%

133

154

21

VIAcodeBEL

VIAcode

110

0.49%

14

72

22

Elinext

elinext

90

0.40%

440

522

23

Emerline

emerline

90

0.40%

116

121

24

Dizzain

Dizzain

90

0.40%

19

20

25

Artezio

artezio

70

0.31%

154

278

26

Paralect

paralect

70

0.31%

125

143

27

HQSoftware

HQSoftware

70

0.31%

77

93

28

Akveo

akveo

70

0.31%

76

89

29

Armada labs

armada labs

70

0.31%

50

56

30

Scandiweb Bel

Scandiweb

70

0.31%

15

309

31

Lovata

lovata

70

0.31%

7

8

32

Instinctools

instinctools

50

0.22%

278

342

33

Promwad

promwad

50

0.22%

83

112

34

Cactussoft

cactussoft

50

0.22%

63

77

35

InData Labs

InData Labs

50

0.22%

45

60

36

Effectivesoft

effectivesoft

40

0.18%

326

347

37

XB software

xb software

40

0.18%

140

148

38

Itexus

itexus

40

0.18%

88

95

39

Wimix

Wimix

40

0.18%

61

65

40

Cortlex

cortlex

40

0.18%

48

73

41

Sumatosoft

sumatosoft

40

0.18%

41

60

42

Industry consulting service

industry consulting service

40

0.18%

25

30

43

Softteco

softteco

30

0.13%

333

353

44

Solbegsoft

solbegsoft

30

0.13%

332

363

45

Belitsoft

Belitsoft

30

0.13%

220

234

46

Itrex group

itrex group

30

0.13%

174

245

47

Specific-Group Belarus

Specific Group

30

0.13%

97

109

48

Logic way

logic way

30

0.13%

64

81

49

Bamboo Group OÜ

Bamboo Group

30

0.13%

51

62

50

Appstud BLR

Appstud

30

0.13%

7

40

51

ISsoft

ISsoft

20

0.09%

1180

1256

52

BelHard Development

BelHard

20

0.09%

102

108

53

Professional Software Associates

Professional Software Associates

20

0.09%

96

114

54

BelVirtualGroup

belvg

20

0.09%

84

92

55

MBicycle

MBicycle

20

0.09%

83

106

56

SpurIT

spurit shopify

20

0.09%

61

72

57

NEKLO

NEKLO

20

0.09%

54

70

58

Softarex technologies

softarex

20

0.09%

52

81

59

Digiteum

Digiteum

20

0.09%

35

47

60

Softacom

softacom

20

0.09%

30

33

61

InnoTech Solutions

InnoTech Solutions

20

0.09%

27

33

62

Coral Team

Coral Team

20

0.09%

26

31

63

ConsensusLab

ConsensusLab

20

0.09%

2

3

64

SOFTCLUB

SOFTCLUB

10

0.04%

309

316

65

IntexSoft

IntexSoft

10

0.04%

229

233

66

Aristek systems

aristek systems

10

0.04%

96

118

67

Invento Labs

Invento Labs

10

0.04%

92

92

68

Azati corporation

azati corporation

10

0.04%

82

93

69

Success Craft

Success Craft

10

0.04%

82

86

70

Twistellar Ltd.

Twistellar

10

0.04%

69

74

71

Lightpoint global

lightpoint global

10

0.04%

65

67

72

Jazzteam

jazzteam

10

0.04%

61

61

73

Expert Software Development

Expert Software Development

10

0.04%

59

62

74

Clevertec

clevertec

10

0.04%

54

55

75

Sunmait technologies

sunmait technologies

10

0.04%

51

54

76

Rubyroid labs

rubyroid labs

10

0.04%

49

52

77

Routine automation

routine automation

10

0.04%

48

48

78

On The Spot Development

On The Spot Development

10

0.04%

47

50

79

StyleSoft

StyleSoft

10

0.04%

35

41

80

Abiatec

abiatec

10

0.04%

33

40

81

UNL solutions ltd

unl solutions

10

0.04%

31

57

82

Twinslash

Twinslash

10

0.04%

29

29

83

Touchsoft

touchsoft

10

0.04%

27

27

84

Upsilonit

upsilonit

10

0.04%

27

35

85

INTELICO

INTELICO

10

0.04%

26

28

86

Omertex

omertex

10

0.04%

26

28

87

Touchlane

Touchlane

10

0.04%

26

27

88

Corpitech

corpitech

10

0.04%

25

25

89

Mifort

Mifort

10

0.04%

25

28

90

Right studio

right studio

10

0.04%

25

29

91

Arateg

arateg

10

0.04%

24

26

92

CleverLabs

CleverLabs

10

0.04%

24

24

93

Cedon BLR

Cedon BLR

10

0.04%

22

23

94

Antalogic

antalogic

10

0.04%

21

21

95

Finwin technologies

finwin technologies

10

0.04%

21

29

96

Techvice

techvice

10

0.04%

17

22

97

Nord-Soft

Nord Soft

10

0.04%

17

17

98

NavirIT

NavirIT

10

0.04%

14

15

99

Adexin

adexin

10

0.04%

11

15

100

Gersis software

gersis software

10

0.04%

11

14

101

Datarockets

datarockets

10

0.04%

9

22

102

Raisetech

raisetech

10

0.04%

8

10

103

Mind Games Software

Mind Games Software

10

0.04%

7

8

104

Sky incom

sky incom

10

0.04%

7

8

105

GloriumTech Bel

GloriumTech

10

0.04%

4

109

106

ArtisMedia

ArtisMedia

10

0.04%

3

4

107

ITA Evolution

ITA Evolution

10

0.04%

3

3

108

Aiscom LLC

Aisconverse

10

0.04%

2

3

109

Botcube

botcube

10

0.04%

1

1

110

Geomotiv

Geomotiv

0

0.00%

37

50

111

Insspring

Insspring

0

0.00%

28

29

112

Tapston Development

Tapston Development

0

0.00%

28

28

113

Naveksoft

Naveksoft

0

0.00%

27

28

114

BIQUANTS

BIQUANTS

0

0.00%

25

26

115

Fingers media

Fingers media

0

0.00%

24

28

116

AKDev Group

AKDev Group

0

0.00%

22

38

117

Lomray Software

Lomray Software

0

0.00%

22

22

118

SilkData

SilkData

0

0.00%

21

23

119

SQRD.tech

SQRD tech

0

0.00%

20

24

120

Aligned Code

Aligned Code

0

0.00%

19

34

121

OZiTAG

OZiTAG

0

0.00%

19

19

122

PlaysDev

PlaysDev

0

0.00%

19

19

123

North IT Group

North IT Group

0

0.00%

15

17

124

Axiopea Consulting

Axiopea Consulting

0

0.00%

13

15

125

Nezaboodka Software

Nezaboodka Software

0

0.00%

11

11

126

DigiTech7

DigiTech7

0

0.00%

9

9

127

CODECAVE PRO

CODECAVE PRO

0

0.00%

4

6

128

Intelligent Semantic Systems

Intelligent Semantic Systems

0

0.00%

4

4

129

Frontbyte

Frontbyte

0

0.00%

2

6

130

SCAND

SCAND

contaminated data

-

217

232

131

Forte Group

Forte Group

contaminated data

-

211

622

132

Klika Tech

Klika Tech, Klika

contaminated data

-

135

193

133

Exposit

exposit

contaminated data

-

81

85

134

Brimit

brimit

contaminated data

-

67

81

135

Spiral scout

spiral scout

contaminated data

-

66

85

136

OnePoint Ltd.

OnePoint

contaminated data

-

51

53

137

BSL

BSL

contaminated data

-

40

69

138

Smart it

smart it

contaminated data

-

40

62

139

Solveit

solveit

contaminated data

-

39

66

140

Lansoft

Lansoft

contaminated data

-

35

35

141

Applied Systems Ltd

Applied Systems

contaminated data

-

34

37

142

Mainsoft

mainsoft

contaminated data

-

33

61

143

Smartapp

smartapp

contaminated data

-

33

39

144

A2 consulting

a2 consulting

contaminated data

-

32

45

145

HF solution

hf solution

contaminated data

-

29

32

146

Celadon

Celadon

contaminated data

-

26

32

147

Mitrix technology

mitrix technology

contaminated data

-

25

27

148

Weband

weband

contaminated data

-

19

19

149

Smartpro

Smartpro

contaminated data

-

19

21

150

Apro software

apro software

contaminated data

-

16

18

151

Exaft

exaft

contaminated data

-

16

16

152

Ontid

ontid

contaminated data

-

16

16

153

Storymode

storymode

contaminated data

-

14

24

154

Jlab

jlab

contaminated data

-

13

61

155

Code inspiration

code inspiration

contaminated data

-

12

16

156

OTR

otr

contaminated data

-

12

397

157

Goodsoft

goodsoft

contaminated data

-

10

13

158

Owls Group

Owls Group

contaminated data

-

10

10

159

Creativeit

creativeit

contaminated data

-

9

12

160

Feeling Digital

Feeling Digital

contaminated data

-

9

10

161

General Soft

General Soft

contaminated data

-

9

14

162

Temsa

Temsa

contaminated data

-

8

16

163

Octopus Games

Octopus Games

contaminated data

-

5

5

164

Security Lab LLC

Security Lab

contaminated data

-

3

3

165

Innovative Future

Innovative Future

contaminated data

-

2

2

166

ITHub

ITHub

contaminated data

-

2

2

167

GP Solutions

GP Solutions

contaminated data

-

98

152

22480

Methodology Limitations

  • We don’t know whether the selected keywords were entered into Google search engine by potential clients of the appropriate brands or market researchers. 
  • It’s not rare that different companies share almost identical brand names. That’s why Google Keyword Planner aggregates the number of requests under one keyword. As a result, we observe an overestimated search volume. For example, “Forte group” is not only the name of the software development company, but also the company which sells luxury decorative kitchens and bathrooms, as well as the British hotel and restaurant company. To exclude the influence of this factor, keyword search volume of such brands were labled as “contaminated data” and didn’t count. 
  • Sometimes it doesn’t make sense to count all branded keywords, because there is little chance that these keywords are used by prospects. For example, “epam stock”, “epam glassdoor” and so on. Therefore, it’s not necessary to include them. However, such manipulations with data are manual, so we can’t be 100% positive about the correctness of the final results after data cleaning. 
  • The name of the company doesn’t mean that a user will enter this name into search engine using the exact spelling.   For example, Google Keyword Planner suggests that “Specific-Group Belarus” (the official name of the company) is unknown as a brand in the USA, but “Specific Group” is. So for two- and more words brand names it’s neccessary to simulate and try different possible variants of spelling, using not only “Get search volume and forecasts” tool, but also “Discover new keywords” one from Google Keyword Planner and even some others like Semrush for more detailed research.  
  • Google Keyword Planner doesn’t garantee to show all possible variants of keywords potential customers use to make a brand search. 

Methodology Advantages

  • Uniformity. Any company’s name may come down to a couple of brand keywords. Google’s search history database allows to reveal these keywords, sum up their total volumes and get a more or less objective picture of the company’s brand awareness over against competitors among users from the USA.   
  • Wider applicability. We can research the level of brand awareness of any brand in any country not only in the USA.
  • Reproducibility. You can get the same results using this methodology and tools (Google Keyword Planner), taking into account the seasonality.

Application of Results

You can compare the performance of your company with rivals:

  • calculate the difference between your brand awareness and theirs;
  • calculate the difference between your total staff (from LinkedIn!) and theirs;
  • compare the appropriate indicators;
  • if you see disproportion like 12.9x higher level of brand awareness comparing with just 1.6x higher number of staff or 6.3 higher level of brand awareness comparing with 1.2x less number of staff) it’s time to take a closer look at their marketing strategy.
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