Jewelry Search Terms Expensive, Ineffective

A new study from the research firm L2 suggests that luxury jewelry brands may be wasting money on search terms

L2’s “Watches & Jewelry 2016: Search Insights” report looked at 66 luxury watch and jewelry brands to evaluate their search strategy and found that much of the money spent on search terms from search engine marketing (SEM) was wasted money.

“Luxury brands proved virtually invisible on Google search results on a wide array of unbranded keywords (e.g., timepiece, engagement ring, etc.) applicable to their individual category,” according to the report.

The results for unbranded terms do not lead to luxury brands but to major department stores, gray market outlets, and specialty retailers.

One way that brands are working to increase their visibility is by bidding on these unbranded terms. L2 reports that 55 percent of luxury jewelry brands are purchasing search traffic through both unbranded terms (engagement ring) and branded terms (e.g., Cartier engagement ring).

Among the brands focusing on the term engagement rings: Harry Winston, De Beers, Hearts On Fire, Forevermark, and Van Cleef & Arpels. Among those five, Forevermark invests the most money.

“Luxury brands have taken a much more nuanced approach toward reaching their target customer,” Elizabeth Elder, research associate at L2, told Luxury Daily. “They don’t want the customers who are shopping for lower-priced items, so they are willing to sacrifice visibility on certain keywords in order to strategically align themselves with the right market.”

Among the jewelry brands shelling out the most for paid traffic: Tiffany & Co., Cartier, Alex and Ani, and Pandora (see chart here). Tiffany & Co. also has the highest organic search traffic, which makes its investment seem worth it, though it is important to remember that correlation is not causation!