New Look SEO Strategy For Out-Of-Stock Products

Redirecting the focus to in-stock items without disrupting the user experience.

Case Study

As a result of a recurring audit, New Look identified a voluminous number of out of stock (OOS) product pages appearing for their seasonal queries in the SERPs. These pages had low click through rates, and ran the risk of damaging the domain’s competitive position. ForwardPMX was tapped to sample some of the OOS pages, and provide suggestions on how to treat them.

Goals & Objectives

Build and implement a large-scale SEO strategy for Out of Stock items.

Improve keyword rankings for key category pages.

Maintain engagement and increase the overall number visits to New Look’s site.

Program Execution

Popular product pages can achieve a high ranking for specific keywords, which becomes problematic when an item becomes out of stock, and yet continues to outrank items that are available.

Since most products pages dynamically go out of stock, and new inventory comes in, it can be difficult to measure the impact that these pages have on overall revenue. Based on a specific set of test URLs from New Look in the “dresses” category and a week’s revenue figures, we identified that product pages that were out of stock for at least one day in a week had organic bounce rates 11.98% higher on average than in-stock pages. Additionally, these pages had a conversion rate 6.66% lower than in-stock products, and resulted in an 11% overall drop in revenue per page across the whole site.

For a retailer the scale of New Look, the number of OOS pages can quickly mount, and a coherent strategy is required that maintains SEO standards without compromising the customer experience.

After considering all the options available, and given the scale of New Look’s website, we decided that redirecting out of stock items to relevant category (sometimes referred as “PLP”s or “Grid”) pages would provide the largest overall benefit. We collected a list of 4,200 OOS pages and provided a map to redirect these to 150 category landing pages that we believed would provide the best user experience.

Results

15%

Dropped Rankings in Keywords for OOS Product Pages

11%

Improved Keyword Rankings for Category Pages

7%

Increase in Number of Visits to Category Pages in 9 Days

12%

Of Keywords Tracked Entered Top 10 Results

12.6%

Improved Conversion Rate for Top Target Pages

4.6%

Increase in Average Order Value for Top Target Pages

4.5%

Improved Revenue Figure

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