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L2’s 2016 Hair Care & Color study finds that independent, small brands are outdoing traditional brands on page visibility and rank on Amazon. Pura D’Or and Art Naturals – brands too niche to be ranked in L2’s Index – appeared the most frequently in first page search results on the e-tailer. Viva Labs and HSI Professionals – also non-Index brands – had the highest average page rank among brands studied. Rogaine and American Crew were the most visible brands in the L2 Index on Amazon, outpacing household name Head & Shoulders by far.

Low overhead costs and the near absence of dominant traditional brands on e-tailers has turned them into fertile ground for indie brands to quickly gain visibility. Furthermore, these emerging brands are not hampered by the constraints of traditional ones, e.g. longstanding salon relationships and the perception that selling online damages brand visibility.

A few established brands are taking a page from these indie brands and investing in their e-tailer presence. For example, Oribe and Phyto – brands that cater to consumers and professionals – now officially distribute on Amazon.

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