Sugar Highs and Crashes in the Jelly Beans & Gummy Candy Amazon Category
John Rode
on Jun 03 2019

There's an unusually large gap in the jelly beans and gummy candy category between the top marketers and the remaining 16 brands. But only one brand (Hershey's) is able to hold a coveted spot in the High IQ Brands quadrant. This general pattern is fairly common across other Amazon categories, just not in this extreme.

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This BrandIQ Quadrant benchmarks brand performance by the critical disciplines of supply chain operations and marketing. Who is best able to both drive and fulfill demand on Amazon in this category? The metric that underpins marketing is Share of Voice (how often your brand appears in organic or paid search results), and for operations it's revenue leakage (how well are you able to avoid losing sales because shoppers are unable to buy your product because it's unavailable, lost buy box to 3Ps, etc.). Given Amazon's ever-increasing complexity and speed, mastering both is not simple.      

High IQ Brands


Congratulations to Hershey's for claiming the top spot in the category. With 7.8% share of voice they may have come in second to Mars, but its 9% revenue leakage is enough to beat out Mars by a significant margin. Hershey's chalks up its marketing success to high marks in both paid and organic share of voice on Amazon, where it scores 7.7% and 7.8%. 

The only real blemish for Hershey's is on revenue leakage due to availability issues where it's losing 8.5%. On the 3P side it's only losing 0.5%, which is outstanding. Get the full BrandIQ report to see how Hershey's and the other brands stack up across all the metrics.

Niche Performers


Nine brands are jostling for the candy bowl in the niche performers quadrant. Sour Patch (Mondelez), Haribo and Skittles (Wrigley/Mars) are vying for top share of voice honors among niche performers. Their shares are tightly packed between 2.2% and 2.4%. This sets them up as sort of the second tier in this category as there is another gap before the remaining six brands which range in share of voice between 0.9% and 1.4%. Trolli brings up the marketing rear for the whole category with just 0.9% share of voice.

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The niche performers category really opens up when we look at revenue leakage. The top performer is Airheads (Perfetti Van Melle) with just 1.3% revenue leakage and Dove (Unilever) rounds out the bottom of the quadrant at 7.5%. Both are strong metrics, so we're not disparaging either brand. Haribo and Swedish Fish (Mondelez) also make it into the top three with 1.4% and 1.7%, respectively. The bottom three includes Lifesavers (Wrigley/Mars) and Sour Patch which have  5.9% and 5.6%, respectively. There is only one perfect performer in this quadrant, and that's Trolli who is losing 0% of revenue to availability issues. That's a rare feat!  

Large leakers


Mars is pushed to the y-axis in the large leaker quadrant due to its 22.8% revenue leakage. That's not a terrible metric though, as we see brands with 40%+ revenue leakage as well. The interesting thing is the vast majority of that leakage for Mars is due to availability issues, and almost none due to loss of the buy box to 3Ps. In fact, only Airheads has better control of the 3P situation than Mars.

On the share of voice side, Mars has no comparison. Their 9.3% is outstanding, particularly in a highly competitive category like this one. We also like how Mars has a balanced attack with 9.6% organic share of voice and 9.3% paid share of voice. An outstanding marketer indeed!




There usually isn't any big marketing news for the laggards quadrant, and this one isn't any different. Their share of voice ranges from 1% (Starburst) to 2.9% (Brach's). On the revenue leakage side they are of course struggling, otherwise they would not be stuck in the lower-left quadrant. M&Ms are a respectable 13.3% revenue leakage. However, Smuckers, Jelly Belly, Starburst and Nestle are all really pegged to the y-axis with 81%, 67%, 43% and 39% revenue leakage, respectively. That's a tough spot to be in. 

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Starburst stands out due to their having only light revenue loss due to availability issues (7.4%) but heavy leakage due to loss of the buy box to 3Ps (36%). The flip of that is Nestle which is only losing 0.7% to 3Ps, but 38% to availability issues. Two equally serious hurdles to overcome.

Look-alike Categories 



The Dog Health Supplies category on Amazon is quite similar in structure to the Jelly Beans & Gummy Candy category. It's High IQ Brand and Large Leakers quadrants have only one or two brands each. After that there's a significant share of voice gap before reaching large clusters of brands at the bottom of the category in the Niche Performers and Laggards quadrants.





jellybeans_Amazon_keywordsOur data was drawn from an automated, daily analysis of top keywords in the Amazon L3 Jelly Beans & Gummy Candy category over a one-year period. Our method focused on 1P brands and their associated SKUs. Marketing performance was determined by analyzing Share of Voice which essentially divides how many times a brand appears in search results, by the total available slots in the search results. Our system looked at both organic and paid ads for the top keywords discovered for the Jelly Beans & Gummy Candy category on Amazon. Our system focused on page 1 search results and the product page for each SKU. Each appearance of the brand in organic search and paid ad slots was given equal weighting. Revenue Leakage was determined by an algorithm that analyzes inventory availability of the SKUs on the product page and translates that into estimated revenue missed for each brand due to things like a SKU being Currently Unavailable, Inventory Encumbrance, Item Under Review, a 3P seller taking the buy box, etc. 


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