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The Gradient Score: Leading Indicator of Sales Success

Geoff Coco

Brands that improve their Gradient Score saw sales gains during Black Friday and Cyber Monday

Amazon.com is a compelling yet complex marketplace in which to promote and sell products. With thousands of brands jockeying for wallet share, it has been difficult to assess how improvements to your brands’ presence can impact top-line sales. The Holidays raise the stakes. This past week, including Black Friday and Cyber Monday, amounted to eCommerce’s most significant race in history. Adobe Analytics estimates that this past Cyber Monday generated $9.4 billion in sales. As four-time Olympian swimmer Michael Phelps famously said, “after all the training and preparation, nothing else matters except who touches the wall first.” In some ways, Cyber Monday is like that Olympic race. Unfortunately, and until the launch of the Gradient Score, marketers lacked a single clear and comprehensive metric to assess their brands’ health within Amazon. At Gradient.io, we now provide that single point of reference (the Gradient Score) and can prove a clear correlation between an improved Gradient Score and sales gains.

To test Gradient’s capabilities, we assessed which brands performed the best over the week leading up to and through Cyber Monday. Our Gradient machine-learning-based platform distills thousands of data points to arrive at a brand’s overall strengths and weaknesses, rendering a single measure, known as the Gradient Score. To find those breakout Black Friday / Cyber Monday (BFCM) performers, Gradient assessed trending Gradient Scores and uncovered some breakthrough industry-leading results.

Before showcasing several examples of brands that successfully improved their Scores and drove subsequential sales velocity from this holiday rush, let’s first describe how a brand’s Gradient Score leads to increased sales. The Gradient Score measures the attributes of a brand’s merchandising on Amazon.com in 3 fundamental areas: product positioning, brand presence, and customer response. Using machine learning and thousands of data points, the Gradient Score gauges each brand’s health against the benchmarks set by competing products within the same category. As a result, the Gradient Score determines who the stronger and healthier brands are, and thus the almost inevitable leaders in sales. In 90% of more than 12,000 Amazon categories measured, increases in a Gradient Score correlated to an increase in sales rank. To illustrate, let’s examine a few wide-ranging product categories where Gradient Score led to improvements in sales: vitamins, over-the-counter cough cold & flu medicines, video games, food storage bags, and for hipsters, beard conditioners.

Knowing that Gradient Score foreshadows sales success, here are a few graphs that illustrate where this effect was in force during the holiday run-up.

Black Friday Performance For Top Brands

In vitamins, Flintstones Vitamins improved their overall Gradient Score from 533 to 600 in those 12 days. They went from a blended sales rank in the category of 59th to 34th over the same period.


Smaller brands can move the needle with Gradient Score too. SAME Nutrition, also in the vitamins category, lifted its Gradient Score from 525 to 602 in the 12 days and went from a blended sales rank in the category of 3,300th to 2,760th over the same period. You can see the roughly 3-5 day lead time between score improvements and resulting sales rank.


Buzzagogo in the OTC Cold & Flu Relief category improved its Gradient Score from 522 to 569 in 12 days and went from a blended sales rank in the category of 108th to an impressive 57th over the same period.


2K Games in the Video Games category improved its overall Gradient Score from 469 to 518. It saw its blended sales rank in the category soar from 35th to 17th over the same period.



Further, YOOBEAUL in the Beard Conditioner category improved its Gradient Score from 548 to 599 in 12 days and rose in the blended sales rank from91st to 44th over the same period.


Finally, S.C. Johnson’s Ziploc brand in the Food Storage Bags category improved its Gradient Score from 489 to 612. Its sales rank in the category lifted from 130th to 47th over the same period.


These are just a few examples from the more than 60 million products that our platform has already processed to produce more than 160,000 Gradient Scores. Time is of the essence, but there’s ample time for brands to check their scores and make improvements that will lead to improved sales this holiday season. And since sales happen everyday on Amazon, the Gradient Score will continue to assess products, expand our footprint and update Scores with further fidelity and scale as we enter 2020.

To get started, brands can search and track Gradient Scores at https://gradient.io. The Gradient Score is part of the broader suite of Gradient’s Intelligent Insights platform that brands use to audit and improve the health of their ecommerce business on Amazon.com and drive sales to new heights. For a demo of the full platform, contact us at info@gradient.io.

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