As digital marketers and online retailers have come to notice, the way people purchase items has drastically changed over the past 10 years. We use to shop online for generic items sold from a commodity-positioned e-commerce site. Now, those generic domains are being downgraded as authority sites thanks to Amazon’s introduction of Branded Storefronts and Google Rankings that favor brand domains over generic domains. These goliaths of the Internet are the leading forces shaping the growing importance of developing a brand online shopping – not just selling products.
Amazon introduced branded stores in 2017, marking a shift in thinking for the leader in e-commerce. Amazon is now allowing consumers to search based on brands, not just product types. There is evidence that branded stores on Amazon are being organically ranked higher than generic product listings.
Google has been favoring brand name domains instead of generic names like “autopartsproducts.com” for several years now. Exact match domains (EMDs) appear to be given a lower authority ranking by Google, in favor of branded domains. Consumers who are searching “auto products” will be given websites of brand domains that are specific and established far before they are presented with autopartproducts.com.
In a recent article from WordStream, the author articulates that EMDs lost their value in online search engines when consumers became conditioned to distrust generic web domains.
Using these market forces as predictors of future trends, it is obvious to see that brands are here to stay. Building a strong online brand presence is still essential to selling online and at retail. Even as digital development are moving at a blinding pace, the value of strong brand remains constant. So ask yourself, are you building a brand line of products and services, or just selling products and services?