In Europe, Amazon is well established as a major retailer for outdoor goods, including Lawn & Garden, Camping & Hiking, Grilling and Swimwear. During the last few years, brick-and-mortar stores have struggled to get people through the door while Amazon’s sales in this space continued to grow rapidly.  European consumers have increasingly embraced (and invested in) outdoor activities while also relying on online shopping more than ever, with Amazon being the most popular choice. Today, Amazon’s European outdoors market has matured, with sales stabilizing after several years of explosive growth.

While Europeans embraced Amazon as their go-to retailer for outdoor goods, many summer brands still lagged behind the changing habits of their target audience. The brands that recognized this shift sooner rather than later were able to reach the most new customers. Since today is the summer solstice, it’s a perfect time to take a closer look at the brands most likely to “win” in Europe this summer and the strategies that have made them so successful on Amazon.

Summer Brands in Europe: The Amazon Effect

 

In the Lawn Care category, Gardena ranks as the #1 brand in both Germany and France, with a category share of 20% and 13% respectively. Gardena’s top item – the “Gardena Comfort Wall-Mounted Hose Box” – is the #1 Hose Reel throughout Europe and the #2 Lawn Care item in Germany.

This item is an example of using content to improve traffic and sales. Gardena has optimized the product title to maximize search ranking – the title does not simply identify the item but also includes some of the most popular terms Hose Reel shoppers are searching for. The full title is: “Gardena Comfort Wall-Mounted Hose Box 25 roll-up automatic: Swiveling hose reel, 25-m high-quality hose, short locking stops, including wall bracket, system parts, and spray nozzle (8023-20)”.

The title begins with the brand name, which is standard, then includes two common base product search terms so shoppers who search either “Hose Box” or “Hose Reel” will see this item. The title goes on to list numerous key terms that may be important to discerning shoppers, including the length, “wall-mounted”, “automatic”, “short locking stops”, etc.

Titles are key for driving traffic to the product, but Gardena has also optimized the detail page to help close the deal. High quality photos and video can significantly improve conversion, so Gardena has included 6 distinct photos of the product, each of which showcases the product in a different state of use, as well as a promotional video on the Amazon.de detail page. This product dominated the category in 2017 and is experiencing rapid sales growth as we enter summer 2018.

Summer Brands in Europe: The Amazon Effect

 

Tepro is the #1 Grilling brand in Germany and #2 in UK, controlling 13% and 14% of the category share respectively. In both countries, the brand sold the #1 grill of 2017 – the “Toronto Trolley Grill Barbecue” – while this year Tepro has introduced a new model. The new “Toronto Charcoal BBQ Grill” appears to have been designed to replace the older model, which is no longer available through Tepro as a 1st party seller.

Wisely, Tepro is selling the new grill at a slightly lower price, which is key for encouraging shoppers to buy the new model rather than purchasing the more expensive older model from 3P vendors. Tepro has also included a link to the new model on the older details page – such a redirect is very important when changing ASINs for a high-ranking item, as the older ASIN has more sales history and better search and review momentum. This approach has been effective, as the 2018 model has already benefitted from the success of the older model enough to rank as the “Bestseller Nr. 1” in Charcoal Grills in Germany.

This success is also driven by the completeness of the brand’s product pages. An outdoor grill is a high-consideration item, so consumers tend to spend more time on specific research. Tepro has included high quality images and succinct, specific bullet points reviewing all of the initial specs a buyer is likely to look for, including size, cooking area, heat output, and ignition system details. Tepro’s new grill clearly enjoyed a successful launch on Amazon in the UK and Germany and is on track to be the top grill of 2018.

 

Summer Brands in Europe: The Amazon Effect

 

The top Sun Skin Care brand in Europe is Nivea, #1 in Germany with a 26% share and #2 in the UK with 12%. The top item – “Nivea Moisturising Sun Spray”, which is also Amazon’s Choice for “sonnencreme” (suncream) in Germany – demonstrates a deep understanding of promotional lift. Nivea offered a Deal-of-the-Day promotion on Amazon.de at the very beginning of the summer sales period in order to boost the sales rank in time for the seasonal increase in traffic. This strategically timed promotion generated a lift in sales allowing Nivea to outpace the rest of the category.

Nivea is also experimenting with non-standard promotions. Shoppers on Amazon.de are rewarded with a free jersey if they purchase sufficient Nivea products. While this promotion applies to a variety of the brand’s items, the promotion page showcases Nivea’s sun protection brands first. Amazon is a great place to pilot innovative marketing tactics approaches and it looks like Nivea is doing exactly that.

 

Summer Brands in Europe: The Amazon Effect

 

In each of Amazon’s three largest European markets, the UK, Germany and France, Speedo ranks as the #1 swimwear brand (with category shares of 38%, 18% and 14% respectively). Speedo’s product pages are simple and direct, but the brand is so well established that many consumers are searching by brand name. Speedo has also invested in their review strategy by combining ASINs for their products in order to include all size and color variants under the same product page. This boosts the overall sales rank and review count of the “parent” ASIN, which in turn improves search performance, while also helping to control 3P sellers by preventing them from having their own competitive detail pages.

It’s worth noting that Speedo, a brand which specializes in highly functional products – ranks just as highly in Women’s Swimwear as in Men’s – the top Swimwear item overall in Europe is the “Speedo Women’s Essential Endurance+ Medalist Swimsuit” – which is contrast to the US where Women’s Swimwear is dominated by fashion brands.

 

Summer Brands in Europe: The Amazon Effect

 

Coleman is a major camping brand on both sides of the pond but has had more success on Amazon.co.uk than in other markets, where it ranks as #1 in Camping Equipment with a category share of 17%. Though the brand produces a wide variety of camping products, the bulk of the brand’s Amazon.co.uk sales are in tents and shelters, led by the “Coleman Gazebo Event Shelter”, two different versions of which rank as the #1 and #2 category bestsellers.

This product’s success is another example of an excellent detail page with multiple photos showcasing its shelter capacity and bullet points detailing the size, use cases, and accessories. The product title is equally complete, listing uses, portability, materials, and even the product’s SPF rating. Additionally, Coleman has a long history of keeping this product in stock, with no significant out of stock periods at any time in the last several years. This complete strategy has earned Coleman the #1 Bestseller tag for tents on Amazon.co.uk.

 

When Amazon celebrated the first “Prime Day” in 2015, they established one of the biggest global eCommerce days of the year and the single largest online sales event of the summer season. In the years since, Europeans have taken on more outdoor activities and Amazon has captured the largest share of these consumers. Summer brands that invest in Amazon and market strategically to the modern online shopper have the most to gain from the retailer’s growing market share and the loyalty of Amazon’s customers.

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