Brand awareness metrics are key to measuring your marketing efforts - especially in the world of eCommerce. That's because brand recognition affects everything from direct traffic and click-throughs to ad engagement and a consumer's willingness to make a purchase online.
In fact according to the 'Rule of 7' most consumers need to interact with your brand seven times before they'll take action.
Brand awareness is about how well-known your brand is among its target audience. Do consumers recognize your name? Do they have the ability to recall it?
When very few people are familiar with your brand it has a low-level of brand awareness. Whereas when people recognize and know a lot about your store it has high levels of brand awareness.
Brand recognition and awareness are key elements for gauging the health of your brand and the success of your marketing. That's why tracking brand awareness metrics is essential.
Why is brand awareness important?
Brand awareness is the first stage of the eCommerce conversion funnel. Without it consumers are unlikely to buy anything from your brand - particularly in an online setting which doesn't allow them to physically inspect your products.
eCommerce brands at all stages of growth across all industries need to spend time building this crucial foundation before they can successfully grow their sales.
10 brand awareness metrics
Measuring brand awareness can seem difficult because it is quite an abstract concept. However it can be quantified.
Here are some of the most important brand awareness KPIs that will provide concrete insights into your performance.
1. Share of voice
Brands can compare the value of their advertising budgets with their industry's overall media expenditure to understand their visibility within the market.
Share of voice is represented as a percentage. So for example if an online brand selling natural deodorant spends $50000 advertising its products while the ad spend across the entire industry is $5000 its share of voice would be 10%.
While advertising spend isn't as transparent as it once was this is still a great metric to keep track of if you have close competitors.
2. Web traffic
It's a good idea to monitor organic direct and referral traffic to your eCommerce store. A surge in direct traffic is a sure sign that your brand awareness campaigns are working. This is particularly important to monitor if you invest in difficult-to-track traditional advertising like billboards or television ads.
Referral traffic can highlight the impact of your social media native media and influencer marketing efforts while increased organic traffic is a sure sign that your content PR or offline advertisements are working.
Tracking backlinks will tell you how many websites feature links to your eCommerce store.
If backlinks are increasing this is a sign that your brand is being talked about. You may even be able to detect certain campaigns or PR exercises that have caused a spike. Backlinks are also a key ranking factor for search engines. More backlinks should lead to greater visibility in organic search results.
SEO tools like SEMRush, Moz, and Ahrefs can tell you how many backlinks your store has and how high quality they are.
4. Brand name mentions
Mentions are references made to your brand on social media in the news in blog posts and elsewhere online. Like backlinks mentions provide an indication of how successful your campaigns are. However unlike backlinks these mentions don't need to include a hyperlink to your store's website.
This is a key metric to track but it's worth noting that negative publicity will also push up your brand mentions. So as well as tracking their volume it's also a good idea to take a deeper look at the sentiment behind these mentions.
Tools like Mention, Semrush and Meltwater can help you track brand mentions. Alternatively you can simply type your brand's name into Google and check how many search results are generated. (This is available at the top of each SERP.) You can also filter the results by month week or hour to review your most recent shoutouts.
5. Earned media
Earned media is when your eCommerce brand is discussed by third-parties without any input or encouragement from your business. This could be in news articles blog posts videos or social media content.
By monitoring these organic mentions you can understand how much your brand is being talked about and how much your eCommerce marketing and PR impacts everyday conversations.
When looked at alongside the likes of sales and followers you may be able to figure out which earned media most impacts awareness of your brand so that you can capitalize on it.
It's also a good idea to keep an eye on your organic search placements on Amazon eBay and other retail sites as your visibility on these channels can hugely impact brand awareness and sales. You can gather this data automatically with Digital Shelf monitoring software.
6. Customer feedback and surveys
Using brand awareness surveys can help you understand how shoppers heard about your product or store as well as their level of awareness.
You can see if blind consumer groups mention your brand without prompts when discussing your industry niche. You can also directly ask if they are aware of your brand and investigate how much they know about it. This makes it easier to tie brand recognition with specific marketing activities.
When creating your surveys only ask questions that fulfill your end goal of measuring brand awareness. This will ensure your surveys are succinct and should help boost completion rates.
7. Branded search volume
Branded search volume indicates how many people are searching for your brand by name. This is one of the most powerful brand awareness metrics because it highlights how many people immediately seek out your brand when they need your products.
To monitor this you can track the keyword volume associated with your brand's name.
8. Share of search
You can also calculate your share of search by comparing the number of organic searches your brand receives with the total number of searches made for every brand within your industry.
Share of search can be a reliable indicator of brand health as well as market share and it is one of the most enlightening brand awareness KPIs for online-only eCommerce brands.
Although it is quite similar to share of voice it is easier to calculate and insightful in its own right.
9. Social media engagement
While monitoring followers is essential focusing on engagement can tell you so much more about your branding strategies. The number of comments shares likes views and reposts you receive should highlight the content that works best.
You'll also be able to get qualitative insights into brand sentiment and the subject matter that matters most to your audience. To do this perform in-depth analyses of your top-performing posts.
Each platform has its own analytics available but you can also use SaaS solutions to create aggregate reports. Where to Buy buttons are ideal for online stores while DashThis will work for other businesses. Brands that exclusively sell through Amazon can use its attribution tool for this too.
10. Brand impressions
Brand impressions indicate how many times an ad has been seen and this metric can highlight how much your ad campaigns impact awareness.
You can also use this metric to calculate your brand's share of impressions. This percentage shows how many times your ads are viewed in comparison with the number of impressions you could have gotten based on your targeting. This highlights how your ad visibility compares with competitors'.
Because brand recognition increases trust engagement and willingness to purchase it is essential to invest in top of mind awareness before you can move consumers through the sales funnel toward conversion.
Monitoring the above brand awareness metrics will empower you to optimize your campaigns. You'll know when it's time to focus on other stages of the funnel too.
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