A few days ago, Google employee John Muller shared his opinion about how mentions without links are useful in terms of ranking.
In particular, one of the webmasters asked Twitter the following question:
“Does mentioning a brand without links help determine site/brand trust?”
Muller limited himself to a short answer: “Usually not, IMHO.”
He also added that a more detailed explanation would be difficult to put into a tweet format, and he was in no mood for a long post. Therefore, he advised focusing on the initial answer as a starting point.’
@JohnMu Do unlinked brand citations can help in defining trust of a website / brand?
— Clément (@SeoClement) May 21, 2020
Recall that earlier Google employee Gary Ilsh answered “yes” to the question whether mentions without links are useful for the site. But he noted that the benefits are indirect: they provide a better understanding of the brand.
And before that, in a video call for webmasters, John Muller said that Google recognizes mentions, but treats them differently than links. And they do not transmit PageRank.