Major brands are still missing out on Net opportunities, says survey

Major packaged goods companies are failing to have an effective presence on the Internet and will miss out on e-commerce opportunities as a result, according to a survey commissioned for Marketing Week.

The survey, conducted by digital consultancy BrandNet.co.uk, shows major brands including Weetabix, Procter & Gamble’s Fairy Liquid and Mars’ Galaxy still have no website.

But Famous Grouse, Persil and Guinness currently top the league – which will be updated every three months – 19 of the top 75 brands are yet to go online.

BrandNet combined research for The Grocer’s Millennium Brands survey and AC Nielsen’s 75 top-selling UK brands of 1998-1999 to produce a league table of websites. They were tested on five criteria, including location, navigation, effectiveness, brand proposition and content.

BrandNet planning director Ed Hebblethwaite says companies are missing the opportunity to build relationships with consumers, which could eventually improve e-commerce opportunities.

Hebblethwaite claims companies are failing to use the Net to redress the balance in the power struggle with retailers.

He adds: “Consumers might not want to go to individual brand sites, but it’s not unrealistic to think there’s eventually going to be a ‘Brands R Us’ on the Net.

“Unless brand owners think pro-ahead now, they’ll miss the boat.”

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