Not that many of us can even remember life before cable TV muchless before Netflix, Amazon Prime, and Hulu. Kids today have no idea how good they’ve got it, no commercials, on-demand everything, endless streams of entertainment 24-7.
Back in the 80s and 90s we had to get up on Saturday at 5am to binge watch the best cartoons and the 4 Ps of marketing (Product, Price, Placement, and Promotion) were relegated to the physical store shelf and a prime ad spot in the middle of He-Man. But how do you manage the 4Ps in the ecommerce era? Enter Digital Shelf Analytics, and hint…promotion isn’t left to cereal commercials in the middle of a kid’s favorite cartoon anymore. The digital landscape is vast and requires more in depth tools to optimize, well, everything.
When you want to know how well your product pages are performing, what do you look at? If you want to be successful, you have to pay attention to more than just dollars and cents. You need digital shelf metrics for evaluating your position in search results, your brand integrity, and how customers perceive your products. The digital shelf is broad, so you have to examine a wide range of data.
That’s why many brands turn to digital shelf software to collect, monitor, organize, and analyze information from retail websites. With tools like Brand Monitor, you can aggregate data from all of your sellers or examine them individually.
Here are five types of digital shelf data you should collect and analyze.
1. Share of Search
Share of Search is your position in search results over time. Consumers use a variety of keywords to find a single product category. To stay competitive on the digital shelf, you need to know how the search results pages are changing for each of these terms—on each retail site you sell through. For a single product, that could involve tracking hundreds of separate data points, but seeing the changes over time is vital.
PriceSpider’s digital shelf analytics solution, Brand Monitor, lets you identify every search term that matters to each product, then tracks your position (and your competitors’) on thousands of ecommerce sites. This makes it easy to see where you’ve gained ground on the digital shelf and where you may need to focus your efforts.
2. Content compliance scores
The more online sellers you have, the harder it is to create a consistent brand experience. You can’t just push a button and get all the right assets on the right pages. You have to manually update some pages and rely on representatives to update others. This inevitably leads to multiple versions of your product pages, some of which have outdated assets.
Content compliance scores help you see which sellers are following your most recent brand guidelines and which pages have incorrect titles, descriptions, images, and other assets. As you work to improve your brand integrity, create consistent experiences, and optimize your product pages, this shows you where some of the most glaring problems are.
Brand Monitor automates content compliance monitoring by crawling every page your SKUs appear on and checking them against a “master copy” of the product page. It identifies every inconsistency—whether there’s a whole paragraph missing, a single typo, or an image is just out of order.
3. Pricing policy violations
It’s nice to imagine pricing policy violations are rare and short lived. The result of an occasional human error or glitch. But it’s not uncommon for ecommerce brands to have hundreds or even thousands of unchecked violations. And that’s a clear indicator of a serious long-term problem.
When sellers violate your pricing policy, it hurts your margins and forces your other sellers to either lose sales or cut their prices, too. If your partners see that you’re not issuing penalties for violations, they may start ignoring your policy altogether, or worse, terminate their relationship with you.
You need visibility into pricing policy violations so that you can enforce your policy, keep your margins up, and maintain healthy relationships with your distributors. Prowl makes this easy by automatically crawling everywhere your SKUs appear, pulling pricing data and, if applicable, even checking in-cart prices. Sellers can’t hide from you with temporary price drops, because you’ll be watching 24/7.
Ratings have a huge impact on your performance. Retail sites often use them to help select the best search results for their categories. And consumers use them to choose the best results and sellers, as well as evaluate a product’s quality.
It’s easy to periodically check your product ratings on a seller’s site. But the digital shelf is far bigger than any one retail site. What if you want to see your aggregate ratings for a product from every site you sell on? What if you want to explore recent trends, or examine a specific date range? Suddenly it’s a lot more time consuming to collect and organize this data. This is where a specialized tool like Brand Monitor’s Ratings & Reviews dashboard comes in handy. You can examine your recent or all-time ratings in one place, and you can easily filter by site or date range.
5. Review sentiments
Review sentiments are the most common words and phrases people use to describe your products in customer reviews. Even if each individual review is completely unique, customers often express similar sentiments—positive or negative—which can affect your performance in search results and influence how potential customers perceive your products.
It takes a lot of work to isolate common review sentiments. Digital shelf software like Brand Monitor automatically identifies commonalities in words and phrases, and lets you explore them with site, date range, or aggregate filters.
Start analyzing the digital shelf
There’s a lot to pay attention to on the digital shelf. So many factors can affect your performance, and it’s crucial that you have visibility into them all. Brand Monitor gives you a wide range of digital shelf analytics capabilities, enabling you to diagnose performance issues and identify timely opportunities.
Want to see what Brand Monitor can do for your brand?