As consumers buy a larger share of their personal care products online, search results is becoming the new arena for brand competition. Procter & Gamble has the highest visibility for first-page search results for keywords, owning three, four and five of the top ten brands on Amazon, Target and Walmart respectively. Brands in the P&G portfolio benefit from the enterprise’s early e-commerce success and engagement with e-tailer merchandising programs.

But other than a large enterprise budget, what determines brand ranks? L2’s Insight Report on Enterprise E-Tailer Strategy finds that incumbents have the advantage when it comes to rank, especially when it comes to niche brands. For example, Vaseline petroleum jelly, Purell hand sanitizer and Q-Tips cotton swabs are the most visible brands in non-brand searches. On both Amazon and Walmart, Pampers claims more than 40% average first-page ownership across 11 popular diaper-related queries while Kimberly-Clark’s Huggies takes the lead on Target.

Screen Shot 2015-11-17 at 12.52.11 PMBut e-tailer presence does not end with search visibility. Just as products with premium shelf space must invest in packaging to make it to consumer baskets, brands should develop their product pages. On Amazon specifically, an official brand product page with a detailed description, images and video can steer consumers away from third-party sellers. As of now, just 27% of top personal care listings on Amazon are sold officially by the e-tailer.

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