Quaker, Cheerios Rank Highest for Digital Food Brands

NEW YORK — Market research firm L2 Inc has released its 4th annual L2 Digital IQ Index Food: US 2017 Report

The L2 report measures the digital performance of 146 Food brands operating in the US. Quaker and Cheerios were ranked the top brands.

The report focuses on key digital strategies and best practices for Food manufacturers to compete as the grocery market continues to proliferate online. The L2 Digital IQ Index methodology examines a brand’s strengths and weaknesses across the four digital dimensions of Site and E-Commerce, Digital Marketing, Social, and Mobile. Index brands are classified as either Genius, Gifted, Average, Challenged, or Feeble.

“More than 95 percent of Index Food brands are available online on Amazon, Target, and Walmart,” explained Bill Duffy, Associate Director of CPG at L2. “While these e-commerce platforms present a major sales opportunity for food brands, they also introduce stiff competition to capture the greatest digital share of shelf, and open the door to independent brands which, with access to cheap fulfillment and accessible merchandising opportunities, are able to really compete against established, legacy brands for the first time.”

Key findings from L2’s report include:

E-Tailer Handoff – 47 percent of brands now incorporate e-commerce handoff on their brand sites, up from 35 percent in 2015. However, only 46 percent of brands feature reviews on product pages, 45 percent offer on-site video content, and just 4 percent include user generated content – all of which are necessary to push consumers down the path to purchase.

Competing for Video Views: Video is an area of heavy investment across social platforms for food brands online, earning 1.6 billion views across Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram; 93 percent of which are paid for. Index brands can improve their video strategies by taking inspiration from third-party media companies, such as Tasty, which published 191 videos between January 2017 and May 2017 that earned more than 10 million views each.

Private Label Threat: Major retailers with established brick-and-mortar stores are pushing their private label brands at the expense of Index brands. For example, Kroger ClickList and Whole Foods Delivery heavily promote their private label products, owning a full 33 and 32 percent of total SKUs in category navigation, respectively. Brands should combat the private label threat by taking advantage of digital merchandising opportunities such as sponsored banners and featured products in both category navigation and search.

The Top 10 digital food brands according to the L2 report are:

  • 1. Quaker
  • 2. Cheerios
  • 3. Barilla
  • 4. McCormick
  • 5. Campbell’s
  • 6. Betty Crocker
  • 7. Hershey’s
  • 8. Pillsbury
  • 9. (tie) Chobani
  • 9. (tie) Silk
  • 9, (tie) Starbucks