The June Search Visibility Results for UK Outdoor Retail Now Out
Well, like the current weather, the UK outdoor retail scene continues to be a volatile affair as far as online visibility is concerned. In particular, some of the ‘big boys’ in the sector are swopping places on the top-trafficked search terms, which has a distinct impact on their overall visibility in organic search.
By the way, if this all appears a little arcane, these shifts are worth £000s in lost or gained sales every month.
If you’re new to these articles, 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
For the third month running, both Blacks and AlpineTrek have seen a massive downshift in visibility that is beginning to look like a ‘new normal’. Last month’s comments still apply in that there’s no one reason for this, despite the sudden nature of it, and it’s worth pointing-out that it’s not a Google algorithmic shift, as other players have remained relatively static. There are certainly negative impacts from significant changes to website merchandising and maintenance.
This chart illustrates the current volatility very well and adds a couple of more recent dates from the beginning of the month, which is the dataset I always use for these articles. It’s almost as if Cotswold, Go Outdoors and Decathlon decided that 2 weeks together in late May was too much and they ran in different directions in June! In reality, it probably indicates some structural and merchandising website changes by 1, 2 or all 3 of them.
If I was O&CC, I would be rather concerned at the steady decline of my organic visibility in the search engines. Whilst they’ve made a long-term investment in using loyalty mechanics to engage customers, search traffic is still a crucial element in outdoors sector ecommerce and, if it’s not coming via organic, it has to be paid for instead - and that’s not a cheap incremental cost.
Finally for this month, it’s worth noting that the average visibility for this relatively market-dominating group of retailers has declined in line with the big drops of some of them - this indicates that other players are eating into their search rankings and traffic. Some of these are smaller players with targeted brand portfolios, but others are biggies like Amazon (sometimes with multiple listings). Our world is changing!
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.