Everyone knows standing out on shelf is crucial for brands looking to succeed in the supermarkets. But what about standing out on the virtual shelves of retailers’ websites? 

As shopppers continue their migration online, this is an increasingly pressing question. Put simply, if a brand gets lost online, it can expect to lose sales as more and more business moves to the web. So we’ve used Brand View’s Score of online represntation to reveal which of Britain’s biggest vodka brands are ahead online and who needs to up their game. 

The results are surprising. While it’s no great shock that Smirnoff, Britain’s best selling vodka with annual sales of £449.9m [IRI 52 w/e 18 July 2015], is best represented on the websites of the big four, Waitrose and Ocado, it may surprise some that own label and Absolut, the sixth biggest vodka in the supermarkets with sales of £39.2m, have joint second best scores. 

Smirnoff 2.9 4.4 3.5 3.8
Own Label 2.5 3.4 4.5 3.7
Absolut 3.1 4.5 2.6 3.7
Russian Standard 1.7 4.4 3.7 3.5
Stolichnaya 0.5 5.0 3.5 3.1
Vladivar 0.7 5.0 2.0 2.7
Grey Goose 0.5 4.1 2.8 2.5
Green Mark 0.9 3.9 2.7 2.5
Finlandia 0.5 5.0 0.9 2.3
Ciroc 1.1 3.7 0.0 1.6

The score is based on three metrics: discoverability (how easy it is for shoppers to find a product on a retailer’s website); representation (how accurately products are described and pictured online); and engagement (how highly shoppers score products on online reviews). 

In terms of brands, Smirnoff and Absolut have the best scores for discoverability by a country mile, with Absolut commanding a 21% share of the first page of search results for the term ‘vodka’ on retailers’ sites and Smirnoff having 17.8%. In terms of share of the vodka page of retailers’ sites, Smirnoff achieved a share of 17.2%, Absolut 16.2%.

Both brands also scored highly in representation, thanks to accurate product descriptions and relevant photography for most listings. Stolichnaya and Vladivar scored the maximum five points for representation, although this was skewed by a relatively small number of lines under these brands. 

Own label vodka is the most engaged with vodka, as the only product type reviewed on every one of the six retailer websites. Conversely, Ciroc, the least represented brand online, scored zero on engagement because their were no reviews on any of the sites. It also scored poorly on discoverability with no products returned on the first page of vodka search results on Tesco. 

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Brand View Score provides the only industry benchmark to compare online performance across multiple retailers. The online shopping experience can be hampered by numerous factors: products not returning in search results, unclear product names, missing images and information, and lack of product reviews. Improving a brand’s online presence can enhance the online shopper’s experience and, most importantly, ensure shoppers buy your brand rather than another. The BVS is a rating calculated using key performance indicators that critically affect a brand’s online presence. For more information email us at hello@brandview.com or visit www.brandview.com