5 Things Brands Need to Monitor on Their Retailers’ Sites
You work hard to make sure your brick-and-mortar stores deliver a consistent experience from store to store. When you take your products online, creating that consistent experience is just as important — but it looks a little different.
Each product page on every retailer’s website represents a unique touchpoint your customers can have with your brand. And it’s your job to ensure those touchpoints look and feel the same, from one retailer to the next. Here are five things brands need to monitor on their retail partners’ online stores:
1. Search and Category Pages
Category pages can be extremely competitive. Every brand in your space is vying for the top positions in these coveted search results, trying to be the first product potential customers see. If you want to position your brand as the leader in your space, you need to keep tabs on what’s happening in search engines and on category pages.
Where is your placement? What percentage of clicks are going to your product page? What's your organic vs. sponsored ranking for your top keywords?
You want to analyze results for all the keywords you care about, including branded keywords. Pay attention to paid search results, too. Which of your competitors are paying for space? Is anyone trying to poach your branded keywords with ads?
Keywords are how your target audience discovers brands in your space. If you want your brand to be the first people think of, you need to be one of the first they see.
Reviews are one of the first things people look at when shopping online. They want to see if other consumers were satisfied with your product, and if there are any issues that pop up consistently. The more positive reviews there are on a product page, the more potential customers trust that product.
You should ideally have at least 20 reviews per product page, on every retailers’ site. If you have fewer than that, consider using programs like Amazon Vine to send product samples to customers in exchange for reviews.
3. Enhanced Content
Enhanced content such as videos, graphs, GIFs and dynamic copy can have a huge impact on your customers’ impressions of your products. This type of content showcases important capabilities, helpful ways to see or think about your product, and relevant messaging to illustrate your product’s value.
If your enhanced content doesn’t make it onto every relevant product page, you aren’t putting your best foot forward. Some customers will form a better impression of your brand and products than others simply because of where they found your product.
4. Buy Box
On some large retailers’ websites, the buy box tells you who is selling a product. Is it Amazon.com or a third party? Buy boxes also let customers select options like the size, color or version of your product that they want.
Monitoring buy boxes helps you keep an eye out for unauthorized sellers who can seriously damage your brand. It also helps ensure your customers have all the options you want them to have.
5. Customer Questions
A lot of retailers allow customers to ask questions directly on product pages. Other customers — or even brands themselves — can answer these questions. If your retail partners display customer questions, this is an important and public-facing opportunity for you to engage with your customers and show people you won’t give them the cold shoulder post-purchase. Thoughtfully responding to each customer helps people feel more confident about doing business with you.
Monitor Your Brand
If you don’t deliver a consistent experience from retailer to retailer, some consumers will have a better impression of your brand than others. One retailer may make you look better or worse than another, and so what a consumer thinks of your brand depends on where they encountered it. Brand monitoring is about ensuring you make the best impression you can — every time.
Sean Reiter is vice president of marketing for PriceSpider, an advanced retail data and analytics technology company that provides insights about consumer purchasing behavior.