February 10, 2010, 12:00 AM

Sports apparel and home improvement brands climb the buzz charts

Amazon continues its run as the most talked-about retailer on the social web, says the Zeta Buzz Top 25 Retail Standings Index.

Amazon.com Inc. continues its run as the most talked-about retailer on the social web for the fifth consecutive month, according to the monthly Zeta Buzz Top 25 Retail Standings Index, a measurement of online retail chatter conducted by digital marketing firm and social media monitoring service provider Zeta Interactive exclusively for Internet Retailer.

The brands showing the most positive movement in the rankings since last month were the Home Depot (+9), Lowe’s (+7) and Nike (+6). The brands with the most negative movement were Barnes & Noble (-11), GameStop (-7) and Old Navy (-6).

There were five retail brands new to the Top 25 list this month: Costco, Walgreens, Staples, Dick’s Sporting Goods and Adidas. Five retailers dropped out of the Top 25 rankings this month: H&M;, Aeropostale, J.C. Penney, Radio Shack and Toys ‘R’ Us.

“Retailers in the sports apparel and home improvement industries experienced the biggest buzz increases-a sign that post-holiday fitness resolutions and improvements around the house are top of mind for consumers,” says Zeta Interactive CEO Al DiGuido. “Meanwhile clothing and toy brands experienced the most severe drops in buzz throughout the month of January, illustrating that post-holiday shopping momentum in these two categories began to finally slow down.”

Zeta Interactive tracks mentions of a retailer’s name across more than 100 million blogs and online communities and analyzes the tone of each reference. The online marketing firm creates the Zeta Buzz Ratings for retailers by multiplying volume of mentions times the percentage of positive tone and dividing by 10. Zeta says a minimum good score for larger retail brands during any given month would be 60 or above.

Following is the list of the top 25 retailers and consumer brand manufacturers ranked by online buzz, with the Zeta Buzz Rating followed by the number of mentions and the percent of mentions that were positive in tone:

1. Amazon.com, 450.25, 4.9 million, 92%
2. Target, 345.85, 3.9 million, 89%
3. Wal-Mart Stores, 313.32, 3.7 million, 84%
4. Sears, 285.18, 3.4 million, 85%
5. Home Depot, 271.61, 3.1 million, 87%
6. Kmart, 244.01, 3.4 million, 72%
7. Kohl’s, 241.74, 3.0 million, 82%
8. Best Buy, 234.86, 3.0 million, 78%
9. Overstock.com, 221.94, 2.5 million, 90%
10. Lowe’s, 181.30, 2.2 million, 82%
11. Borders, 158.08, 2.0 million, 80%
12. Nike, 154.64, 1.9 million, 80%
13. Old Navy, 134.62, 1.7 million, 81%
14. Macy’s, 126.85, 1.6 million, 82%
15. Reebok, 101.68, 1.2 million, 83%
16. CVS, 91.66, 1.0 million, 84%
17. Costco, 85.03, 1.0 million, 82%
18. Walgreens, 81.32, 1.0 million, 81%
19. Gap, 78.31, 1.0 million, 77%
20. Staples, 73.20, 915,000, 80%
21. Nordstrom, 70.58, 793,000, 89%
22. GameStop, 57.83, 751,000, 77%
23. Barnes & Noble, 54.15, 722,000, 75%
24. Dick’s Sporting Goods, 50.47, 567,000, 89%
25. Adidas, 49.97, 581,000, 86%

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