The term competitor analysis refers to the process of analyzing, researching, and comparing your business in relation to other competitors. Business owners usually do it for the purpose of improving their branding, SEO, strategy, conversion optimization or UX, etc. Today we are going to have a look at how to do a competitive analysis and how to turn it to your advantage.
How to Perform a Competitor Analysis 101
1. Make a List of Your Competitors
The first step you need to take when making a competitor analysis is to make a list of your competitors. Whether we’re talking about local or national rivals, write them all down. If you don’t know how to find your competitors, simply Google the type of product or service you are offering. Then, you’ll see what websites appear first, besides yours.
2. Analyze and Compare
Take the time to dig deeper for each of the rivals. Try to place yourself in their position and understand what type of content they are relying on. Do they have a blog? A website? Accounts on all the social media platforms? Do they use case studies or provide premium content? Check for the following types of content:
- Visual content;
- Case studies;
- Press releases;
- Slides/PowerPoint presentations;
- blog posts, etc.
After you identify them, it’s important to analyze their quality as well. In this way, you gain more perspective on what your rivals are doing.
3. Look at the SEO Structure
If you notice your competitors offer the same type of content as you do, there must be something else they are doing differently. In this case, you should have a look at their SEO structure. It’s important to see how your rivals are using keywords in their internal links, page title, URL architecture, H1 tags, etc. Pay attention to the types of keywords your competitors are using as well. You can even get some inspiration from there and start using additional keywords for your website.
4. Check the Social Media
An important component of any competitive analysis report is analyzing the social media presence. There are plenty of social media analysis tools which you can use if you want to assess your competitor’s position. Try to understand how is social media integrated into your rivals’ marketing strategies. Besides being present on all platforms, it’s essential to use them right as well. Are they interacting with the audience? Are they taking full advantage of the online features? Check how often do they post and what exactly are they focusing on. See if there is anything you can learn from them and start applying it to your social media strategy as well.
5. Bring It All Together
When you finished your competitive analysis, it’s important to compile all the information together. Take all the things you found out about your competitors and see what areas need to be improved with your company. You can find plenty of options for a competitive analysis template online if you need some extra guidance.
Turn It All to Your Advantage
Now that you know the main steps you need to take to perform a competitor analysis, it’s time to look at how you can turn them to your advantage. Here you have a couple of benefits you can use if you’re interested in getting everything you can from this analysis:
1. Understand the Market
Besides finding out more details about your competitor’s activity, a competitive analysis helps you assess the entire market. You can see what is trending right now, who are the influencers and why aren’t your there as well if that’s the case.
2. Target Your Customers Better
You can also get a better image of your industry’s customers as well. See what they like the most, what techniques attract the most audience and how to adjust your marketing strategies accordingly. Use the analysis to turn your business into the most appreciated on the market. Besides looking at the successful strategies your rivals are using, you can also learn from the unsuccessful ones.
3. Economic Climate Tracking
The analysis helps a business owner assess the economic climate as well. You can check if certain political or economic policies or abrupt changes reflected in the buying behavior in your industry. Check whether a certain product is better for selling or if it’s starting to lose popularity, for example.
4. Competitor Pricing
If you’re unsure of the prices you’re offering, you can use this great tool to see what is the level of the entire market. You can then adjust the prices to attract even more customers. Adapting to the competition, their prices, as well as your customer base is one of the best ways in which you can use competitor analysis to your advantage.
5. Market Potential Forecasting
For those of you who are very good with forecasting, you shouldn’t miss the chance of using the information you got with the analysis to foresee any market fluctuations. Based on the current trends and events, many business owners forecast industry evolutions and appearances.
6. Expand to Other Markets
If you notice a competitor is trying to extend to a different market, you should consider following them. Sometimes, a new direction can completely change your profits. At the same time, being ready to switch to a new market or to adapt to new changes presupposes a certain flexibility on your side. For this reason, it’s important to gather as much information as you can from your rivals and consider it before making an essential decision.
Here you can watch a short clip explaining in more detail how to do a competitive analysis:
To draw a conclusion, you can see that it’s not difficult to perform a competitor analysis on your niche. Following the steps above can bring you a lot of benefits. The information you gain is one of the most useful tools that help you assess your own situation, as well as that of your rivals and of the entire market. It’s an easy and effective tool for seeing where you stand, compared to the rest of the competitors, and for identifying your own mistakes.