We are all huge fans of the National Football League and our respective teams. The simple reality check that all fans need to know is that the National Football League and the Detroit Lions are – and operate as – a business that requires an inflow of revenue.
The main product sold by professional football teams are the players on the field – that’s obvious. In order to create more revenue, all of the teams branched out into selling team based apparel.
With the increased use of the internet by consumers, all NFL teams use their own website as a source of e-commerce to sell their products. My Lions use http://shop.detroitlions.com/ as their e-commerce site.
So how effective is the digital marketing of the Detroit Lions’ organization?
If you are associated with an NFL football team, you already have national brand recognition – but where exactly does their traffic come from. I know – through experience – that if you follow the Detroit Lions on social media, they advertise their online store heavily. This is known as unpaid referrals and it makes up a large portion of their traffic (it is also completely free).
Another large source of traffic is through searching in Google. When you google “Detroit Lions apparel,” it is the second website listed. This organic search lags behind only www.Nflshop.com. Although it seems counterintuitive, NFL Shop is a competitor of the Detroit Lions’ website as the revenue will go to the NFL instead of the Detroit Lions. The Lions need to improve their SEO strategy
The next criteria are conversions that lead to their revenue. Below is a picture of the Detroit Lions’ website:
As you can see, it is a very aesthetically pleasing website that is easy to follow, it has a large call to action “Shop Now” and has a large promotional banner right on top. All of these factors are put in place to boost conversions and click-through rates. This website holds true to the Lions’ brand with the unique Lions’ Honolulu Blue and the “One Pride” banner on the left.
Overall, I think the Lions have an effective website and should be more proactive with their SEO campaign. Especially because their team is the biggest disappointment in professional sports.
If you would like to go into a more in-depth analysis of the use of digital marketing in the National Football League, I encourage you to read the work of Dr. Michael Pepe’s analysis of the Minnesota Vikings. Anything from Dr. Pepe is worth looking into!