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    July 14, 2020
    6 minute read

    6 Essential Ecommerce Metrics for Digital Shelf Success | Salsify

    by: Dom Scarlett

    Key performance indicators (KPIs) are essential for brand manufacturers to gauge both successes and failures. While it's tempting for brands to report on every KPI they encounter, the digital shelf changing continually

    Leaders must focus on the essential metrics that will help them meet their unique goals. Too much data can blur the appropriate next steps for your team, leaving them chasing irrelevant or unactionable information. 

    Using these six essential ecommerce metrics will help you hold your team accountable and ensure continual optimization to improve performance.

    Build a Foundation for Measuring Performance

    Salsify co-founder and CMO Rob Gonzalez stresses that brand manufacturers must have a solid foundation before they can hone in on the more complex aspects of ecommerce optimization. This foundation must include both content and brand ownership.

    Positive sales share, search rank, traffic, conversion, and low cart abandonment rates are the results of solid content health and brand ownership. Together, these metrics paint a detailed picture of a brand's competitive position — and, more importantly in today's consumer-centric world, how shoppers view and engage with products.

    Metric 1: Content Health

    Every element of your product display pages (PDPs) can provide insights to help boost performance and increase revenue. Title length, description length, number of feature bullets and images, and the overall quality of images all play critical roles in how your products are discovered, researched, and purchased by consumers.

    Immersive, robust content is the consumer expectation, and detailed product content is the number one reason shoppers complete transactions. Retailers also expect brands and content to be intently focused on the consumer experience. 

    Comparison charts, 360-degree product image spins, PDF downloads, and image galleries are being used more than ever on PDPs. Using the Salsify Product Page Report, product content is benchmarked against data-based best practices, and your product pages receive a letter grade depicting overall content health. This grade can help guide brands to make critical improvements to increase performance.

    Metric 2: Share of Search

    Taking a deep dive into relevant search terms for your products. Identifying search terms should be a thorough process — conducted product by product — so consumers can easily find your products during the search and discovery stage. 

    With this information, you'll be armed with how your search rankings compare to your competitors and how easy your products are for consumers to discover. 

    By calculating the percentage of search results compared to your competition, the Salsify Share of Search Report can help your brand improve your search engine optimization (SEO) strategy. Gain insights on how to increase your SEO rankings and decide how much your brand should invest in SEO marketing.

    Metric 3: Search Rank

    Your brand must know where in rank your products appear — both within search engines and within retailer site searches. According to business analytics firm Databox, "67% of all clicks go to the first five organic results."

    Improve your product rank visibility by using more quantitative and qualitative content, taking steps to generate more reviews, and improving your click-through rate (CTR).

    SEO is one of the most critical aspects of boosting search rank across retailers. The Salsify SEO Report will provide SEO keyword recommendations that your team can add to product pages to lift discovery and improve search rankings.

    Metric 4: Onsite Traffic

    Monitor how many consumers visit your PDPs and website, when they visit, which pages they view, how long they stay, and if they click the "buy" button. These metrics can help your team plan and execute more targeted marketing objectives.

    Onsite traffic is also a direct influencer of online sales. It can tell you which channels are most effectively funneling consumers to your products.

    Helpful, instructional, or explanatory videos, immersive enhanced content, comparison charts, image galleries, and other content will aid in keeping consumers on your PDPs longer.

    Metric 5: Conversion Rate

    The percentage of visitors to your PDPs who complete a transaction is your conversion rate. These numbers should be continually increasing from regular optimization, aligned with regular updates and changes.

    Set benchmarks for your team and identify opportunities for improvement and optimization.

    Low conversion rates can be a result of consumers abandoning PDPs due to a wide range of content issues. According to the 2020 Salsify consumer research report, 79% of shoppers have not purchased a product page due to a problem with product content.

    A lack of product detail information, videos, or images will send consumers to your competitors who will answer their questions upfront more thoroughly.

    Metric 6: Shopping Cart Abandonment Rate

    In 2019, the Baymard Institute reported consumers abandoned their shopping carts almost 70% of the time. This behavior might be due to window shopping and the general roundabout way consumers research and discover products today. 

    By referencing your shopping cart abandonment rate, be sure consumers aren't leaving behind your products because of cumbersome checkout processes or unexpected costs like taxes or shipping fees. Be transparent with those costs early on and make the checkout process as seamless as possible.

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