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What is digital shelf analytics? (How to gain actionable insights into your brand)

August 26, 2022
Digital shelf analytics
Mike Black
Written By
Mike Black

Have you ever tried navigating a room you’ve never been in before with the lights turned off? You’re bumping into corners, hitting walls, and knocking things over. “Disoriented” is putting it lightly.

Many brands in the eCommerce space experience this same problem, even if they don’t realize it yet. Without digital shelf analytics, they’re as lost as they’d be in a strange room with the lights turned off.

What is digital shelf analytics? Good question.

What is digital shelf analytics?

It’s the constant process of taking eCommerce data from the digital shelf, your brand’s online product position, and key features, and analyzing it thoroughly to find opportunities for improvement. Your digital shelf might be on a product description page on a retailer’s site, a third-party marketplace, a mobile app, a personal website, or an eCommerce channel. 

Most shoppers first engage with the digital shelf on the search results page, where they look first for items to purchase after typing their direct inquiries into the search bar. But the digital shelf also includes the product description page, where shoppers will often go next to learn more about your product by checking out the content, reviews, availability, and pricing. 

Digital shelf analytics software can help brands strategize product content and pricing, enabling them to control their items' narratives and value propositions online. The ongoing process of analyzing data regarding a brand’s online product presence yields actionable insights. Brands can take those insights and start winning on the digital shelf

The digital shelf is important because it impacts several key components of brands, such as: 

  • Sales

  • Profitability

  • Brand reputation

A strong grasp of this concept will equip your brand with the expertise needed to command the digital shelf, put actionable insights into motion, and watch your brand soar beyond expectations. 

7 digital shelf analytics you should  be measuring

While digital shelf analytics providers can measure and break down just about any metric related to online selling, focusing on actionable data can put your brand in the best position. For eCommerce brands, these are the most important metrics to concentrate on.

1. Share of search

Understanding how your product is performing on search pages is vital to the success of your brand. This makes search data one of the most crucial digital shelf metrics to track. Digital shelf analytics software can help you understand how you’re ranking for specific keywords, which goes a long way toward elevating your share of search.

Share of search is crucial to your strategy because it doesn’t rely on the number of advertising dollars you spend. That’s not to say paid ads don’t affect the share of search metric, but it is essential for measuring organic traffic. The most successful brands are built on consistent organic traffic that leads to conversions. 

There are as many different search engines to consider as retailers you’re selling on. If your brand ranks well on Walmart, that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s ranking on Amazon. Winning on the digital shelf means actively monitoring how much search traffic is going toward your product pages and breaking down the details of that traffic.

2. Content compliance

Checking product titles, descriptions, and imagery for compliance and quality goes a long way in the appearance of your digital shelf. Gaining that level of control over your product listings is the equivalent of brick-and-mortar marketing and product placement.

Inconsistent product pages are a risk when selling on multiple platforms. If each retailer describes your products differently, it creates a confusing experience for your customers. You’ll also find that each product page performs at different levels. 

Keeping content consistent is essential as you build your brand and expand into the online marketplace.

Create definitive versions of each product page to prevent inconsistency and different performance levels. This valuable digital shelf metric allows you to track the content compliance of each page. 

3. Availability

Inventory and availability play an essential role on the digital shelf. A harsh truth of online selling is that it doesn’t matter how great your product or offering is if it’s out of stock — your rankings will drop and leave room for your competitors to come out on top. This daily metric provides a visual representation of stock availability for better supply chain stock management. 

Consistently tracking your inventory will help you measure supply and demand. Instead of driving traffic to your competitors, use an automated system to monitor this metric.

4. Product & category performance 

This isn’t necessarily one number or rate, but understanding which of a brand’s products outperform others can yield critical information. Some products might be selling more per view but might not be advertised on your homepage. You can easily resolve this missed opportunity and gain more revenue. 

To check these numbers, take a look at the following:

  • Which items are driving repeat sales?

  • What products are customers ordering most frequently?

  • Which products are ordered in higher quantities?

  • Do you have products that are often ordered together?

  • Are there any products that get abandoned more often than others?

  • Which items are helping you win the most market share?

Tracking product and category performance will allow your brand to optimize inventory and boost your product pages.

5. Buy box win rate

Your Buy Box win rate shows how often your listings have held the Buy Box during a certain period. This metric is valuable for gauging a brand’s pricing rules and strategy. It determines if your current pricing rules perform at optimal market levels. 

Since the Buy Box percentage relates to page views, it can indicate sales potential. 

6. Ratings & reviews

Analyzing shopper sentiment for your brand allows you to influence purchase behavior and rankings. Many sellers just take a surface look at their ratings and reviews, but there are deeper metrics to dive into once you get underneath the surface. Digital shelf analytics give you actionable data that can optimize your ratings. 

Tracking how new product launches are being received, where there’s customer confusion, and how your brand’s overall experience can be improved make this metric actionable. When insights are actionable, they’re valuable for your brand.

7. Conversion rate

We saved the best for last. There are few pieces of data more important than your brand’s conversion rates. This is one of the best ways to evaluate how your products are performing on the digital shelf, as it tells you how often shoppers purchase your items after viewing them. If your conversion rates are low, it’s a strong indicator that major changes need to be made.

Conversion rates vary from seller to seller. Keeping an eye on the variability between your marketplaces offers the most accurate and implementable data.

How to implement and use digital shelf analytics

If you’re already familiar with the manual compilation of data, switching to a digital system might feel foreign. While you could compile certain digital shelf analytics manually, the process would be cumbersome. The right partner will make the shift seamless, and the convenience and accuracy of great analytics software can’t be overstated. 

Profitero is a digital shelf analytics software platform that can take your process to new heights. We’ll help you automate your brand’s data collection for all channels and tailor the information to be actionable. Not every metric is essential to keep track of — some of them just crowd your view of what matters. Profitero helps reveal metrics that add genuine value to your operations. 

Investing in digital shelf analytics software doesn’t automatically guarantee success. You’ll want to use it in an accurate and lasting way. Profitero walks you through the entire process and removes the guesswork. Using a software platform can elevate your workflow and yield priceless insights.

Find digital shelf analytics solutions with Profitero

Digital shelf analytics measurement is no joke — it’s difficult to master your metrics. Those numbers can get out of hand and become overwhelming unless you use a solid eCommerce analytics platform. An analytics solution like Profitero can help cut through the clutter and deliver actionable insights.

Instead of focusing on every metric, concentrate on the ones that matter most to your eCommerce business. The digital shelf is vast, with countless components to monitor and analyze. Get in touch and let Profitero help you win on the digital shelf. Schedule a demo today, and we’ll figure out if we’re a fit.

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