10 minutes Reading time
20 pages Length
Updated September 2019
This is our first ever Book Sellers report. We’ve scoured the web for book sellers to see which sites are doing well and which ones could do with a little TLC.
In the report we’ve ranked sites for key metrics such as SEO visibility and page speed as well as aspects that often get overlooked such as brand reach and social scores.
Our aim is to provide genuine insight to help brands benchmark their site against competitors.
So, download the report, continue reading and see what opportunities you could be taking advantage of in your sector.
It’s been a fruitful year for book sellers online this year with only three of the top ten retailers losing visibility.
The top ten sites are:
Waterstones has had a successful year, taking the top spot after a 48% increase in visibility. The Works has also stepped up their SEO game, gaining 16% visibility year on year.
It’s been a tough year for WHSmith who have dropped into 3rd place after a 62% drop in visibility.
World of Books has had a fantastic year, making it into 6th place after a huge 716% visibility increase.
1. waterstones.com (+48%)
2. worldofbooks.com (+716%)
3. thebookpeople.co.uk (+42%)
4. abebooks.co.uk (+24%)
5. theworks.co.uk (+16%)
1. whsmith.co.uk (-62%)
2. barnesandnoble.com (-36%)
3. ebooks.com (-44%)
4. wordery.com (-45%)
5. foliosociety.com (-20%)
In this landscape, online book sellers are of course competing against the original online bookstore – Amazon.
Well done to World of Books who is ranking just behind Amazon in position 2 for the highest competition keyword, ‘books’.
In such a competitive space, enhancing your listings is so important as is can improve your click through rate.
One of the best ways to do this is by implementing the right kinds of structured data on your site.
At the very least you should have Organization SCHEMA and ItemList SCHEMA so Google can identify what you site is and does and what your products are.
It doesn’t look as though many book sellers are utilising SCHEMA on their sites. They are missing a trick.
Waterstones is using Book SCHEMA on their book pages which shows listings that have star ratings.
To find out what other structured data you should be implementing on your site, read our guide on SCHEMA for eCommerce sites.
In our opportunity and competition keywords you’ll see some suggestions with author names in the keyword.
Creating author pages for your best selling authors is a fantastic opportunity for content and rankings.
We’ve compiled a list of authors with search volumes which you can see here.
We all know that in the world of books, Amazon is the site to beat.
The key to great SEO in this landscape is finding the right gaps and filling them appropriately.
We’ve compiled a list of keywords Amazon isn’t ranking for that our top ten retailers are. You can see the list here.
If you need help finding out this information for your own site, we offer a free 30-minute audit that can expose these kinds of opportunities. Enquire about an audit here or start a live chat.
Social media provides a space to promote your products, events and services to an ever-growing audience – if you do it well.
Waterstones is topping the social charts with the highest number of brand searches per month and a very high owned social score to go along with it.
They are very active on Facebook, posting regular videos of mini book evaluations from authors and reviewers.
Their Instagram features images of new books as well as videos from book signings.
They could vary this even more by sharing customer images of them reading their books with a personalised hashtag.
The Works is next in the list. They do have a personalised hashtag which is #theworkscreations but they don’t seem to repost any customer images.
Most of their posts are product promotions. Their owned social score is very low in comparison to Waterstones, so providing more engaging content could broaden their audience and encourage people to like, share and comment on their posts.
Social media might not be your number one priority, but it’s important to have a focus on it as an eCommerce brand.
Making any transaction online is expected to be a smooth and quick process. It’s convenient for users to purchase from their mobile or laptop, but only if the site is quick enough.
It’s no surprise that slow page speeds tend to mean high bounce rates, which is obviously terrible for sales.
Faster sites also tend to perform better for key SEO metrics such as rankings and visibility because Google can crawl them more efficiently.
We used Google PageSpeed Insights to identify the 5 fastest Book Seller sites:
Read more about the importance of Page Speed.
All our reports are free. We produce reports for sectors we’d love to work in, about companies we’d love to work with. Collating this data and analysing it means we already have an insight into your digital landscape when it comes to talking to you.
While we can only publish a small number of brands in the report, we source data from across the board. So, if you can’t see your name in our data, get in touch and we’ll provide you with a personalised version of the data.
If you want to know anything else about our report data or are interested in a free SEO audit, get in touch.