April 1st Outdoor Retailer Search Visibility Results Released
It’s time for the April synopsis from Resonant’s unique DigitalCrux outdoor industry metrics, starting with the monthly search visibility index for 8 key retailers.
If you’re a new visitor, the chart below shows data for specific dates a month apart (in reality, we track these much more often), the last index having been taken just this morning.
Outdoors Retailers Google Visibility
The timing of this last data run is significant, as we see major downward shifts in the visibility of both Blacks and AlpineTrek on what were previously their top 50 traffic-driving organic search terms. Whilst Blacks were already well into negative territory last month, AlpineTrek’s numbers had been improving, so what’s going on?
Well, if you needed any convincing that good analysis is required when looking at statistics, note that AlpineTrek are generally improving their rankings for both brand terms e.g. arcteryx and generic terms such as outdoor clothing. The reason for their rapid apparent decline is that, for some very high-volume search terms, especially ‘thenorthface’, AlpineTrek are having problems in maintaining consistent search rankings. Some days, they’ll be #4 and other days, almost invisible. Fortunately for them, their progress on rankings outside their top 50 search terms has led to impressive growth in organic traffic, when many other are in decline, as this chart illustrates (numbers omitted to spare their blushes):
The other factor that affects AlpineTrek more than many others is their aggressive reworking of their website merchandising. This is entirely appropriate if your focus is on maintaining maximum relevance for consumers through seasonality and new product, particularly if you have strong email, social and paid advertising programmes. However, for many retailers, the side-effects of lost rankings and search traffic are too great to sustain. This is well-illustrated by those retailers that have consistent search visibility in the index - they invest in this and want a return on that investment.
Coming back to Blacks, they hopefully take a similar approach to merchandising, as they took a first hit in early February and a second one in early March. Worringly, though, some of the high-traffic rankings declines are not winter or niche searches e.g. ‘outdoor clothing’ and ‘thenorthface’.
Finally for this month, a shout-out for the smaller players in the index, with both Ellis Brigham and Gaynors making significant progress. Gaynors, in particular, have seen across-the-board improvements in rankings for both brand and product terms e.g. up 5 for ‘Mammut’ and up 6 for ‘waterproof jackets’. As the consistent best performer in the DigitalCrux website audits, that’s justified reward for doing the basics well.
Note About this Index
If you’ve not seen this index before, the chart above shows the visibility in Google UK for the top 50 organic search terms driving traffic for each website i.e. the specific terms that are most important to that retailer website. A score of 100 would require top ranking for all 50 search terms. The data shown above is for the 1st of each month (DigitalCrux actually captures this data at least every 3 days to eliminate anomalies and highlight trends).
If you have any questions about the data, please get in touch.