Retailers are generally well-positioned to achieve higher visibility than brands on nonbranded keywords thanks to the large number of SKUs for which they can optimize. However, two brands punch above their weight class in France and the U.K. on Google search.

Yves Rocher and The Body Shop best or achieve comparable visibility compared with key retailers in the market thanks to two diametrically opposed strategies according to Gartner L2’s report on the topic. In France, Yves Rocher garners significantly higher visibility on shopping ads compared with the main retailers operating in the space. This allows Yves Rocher to immediately direct customers to product pages to complete the sale. Overall, shopping ads in France are a key opportunity for brands to feature at the top of the search engine results page and push consumers to sales.

In the U.K., The Body Shop is the only brand that manages to compete with beauty retailers on organic Google search results. To boost its search visibility, The Body Shop leverages its product ingredients. With 13 mentions of “vitamin e” on its Vitamin E Moisture Cream product page and 20 mentions within editorial content, the brand ranks highly on organic nonbranded Google search for “vitamin e.” Additionally, the brand chooses page titles and tags based on high-volume keywords to achieve greater relevance on Google search results. Finally, The Body Shop built a significant number of referring domains, achieving 3.5 times the number of links compared with the average. All these factors contribute to the brand’s high organic search visibility.

When considering beauty products, consumers now spend more on lipsticks than they did in 2015, boosting the U.K. beauty market. As such, MAC Cosmetics earns 37% organic visibility on nonbranded broad keywords such as “lipstick” and “lipgloss,” which receive the largest share of search volume. Using a tactic similar to The Body Shop, MAC’s category pages consistently mention lipstick on each product title, supporting the brand’s organic visibility.

Beauty brands should structure their product and content pages using the above search engine optimization best practices to support their paid investments. Additionally, they should also monitor shopping ads to both leverage a less competitive environment and gain additional visibility.

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