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Conducting a competitive analysis is a big part of our Fishalytics local intelligence team’s auditing process, because what we’ll do is analyze your company’s top competitors to get a better glimpse into their digital marketing and sales strategies.
The main purpose of a competitive analysis is to establish a base expectation for your brand’s marketing strategy, and then of course find ways to beat your competitors in web page ranking and other important metrics.
To put it simply, you can only improve your business once you understand what your competitors are doing better than you; because obtaining your highly-coveted, tangible marketing results will always entail making the proper adjustments to distinguish your business from your target audience and Google’s perspectives!
There truly are a lot of different methods and steps that you can go when it comes to completing your website’s competitive analysis, and what’s great is that the Big Fish Local team is always here to help guide you through these rather confusing analytics!
So this guide will serve as a fundamental, yet completely essential guide when it comes to going the DIY route with your competitive analysis; and below are the checklist points that you should always keep in mind:
There’s a high likelihood that you already are well aware of who your biggest competitors are, and doing a quick brainstorming session should allow you to easily identify at least a handful of large companies within your specific industry.
But understanding who your competitors are during a competitive analysis means conducting a whole bunch of research that’s backed in digital marketing data, and this is because search rankings are a whole different ball game than sales!
So what you should initially do is simply conduct some basic Google searches using general industry keywords, or any keywords that apply to your business. You’ll then need to see where your business ranks within these ubiquitous SERPs (search engine results pages) as compared to your biggest competitors.
Take notes of which businesses are out ranking you and your company’s exact positioning within the results page. This list of businesses that are doing better than you on your most important SERPs are your competitors!
Using your newly established list of competitors from Step 1, you can then narrow down your most important competitors by understanding what products/services they offer. This is important because there may be companies from your list that are actually in a different industry niche than you, so you’ll want to distinguish them as indirect competitors that aren’t quite as big of a priority.
But what’s more important within this step of the competitive analysis process is to fully understand how a company is marketing similar products/services to yours, because these types of insights can help you better understand how you should go about your own marketing strategy.
So what you should do is take some notes on your competitors’ products/services, including answering the following:
Once you’ve grasped a thorough understanding of your competitors, it’s then time to dig deep into your keyword analyses. The following are two important steps to take when it comes to conducting a DIY keyword analysis:
So once you have a better understanding of your most important keywords, it’s then important to do a lot of Google searches and take notes on how well you currently are ranking within these SERPs as compared to your competitors (similar to what you did in Step 1). But to go further, you should then click on your competitors’ links and see how exactly they’re utilizing these keywords within their website content (webpage, blog, etc.).
It’s also a good strategy to figure out which valuable keywords your competitors currently aren’t ranking for, and a good place to start here would be to figure out questions that your target audience can’t find the answers to online. Once you understand these types of questions, you can then answer them through your content and get a stronghold on lesser-known SERPs.
But what’s crucial with this step is going A LOT further than Step 1 when you conducted general search engine queries to find your competitors, and the following keyword tools can help you:
What’s great about these keyword tools is that they’ll provide you with a lot of important information about specific industry keywords that are important to your business, including how difficult/competitive certain keywords are. These tools can also help you when it comes to finding long tail keywords that may be much easier to rank within, which can help jumpstart your marketing strategy while you’re developing your topic list for your content strategy.
And the data found within these keyword research tools will help you better determine which keywords you should be going for to fulfill your short and long-term goals!
These days there truly are many different ways that your competitors may be directly communicating with your shared target audiences, which means you’ll need to be thorough in researching how people are responding to them on outlets like social media channels.
Here’s a quick list into the social media outlets that you should be looking into to analyze your competitors’ overall engagement levels:
When you look through their social channels and blog pages you should take a look at the following:
This step is one of the initial steps towards a successful social media management strategy, because it’ll help you determine what type of content you should be creating.
A SWOT analysis is always a great starting point in terms of deciphering what your business’ best opportunities are, and SWOT stands for:
So what you should do is utilize the below list of questions to better analyze your competitors and your own business, and it’s important to note that this is the extra digging in your competitive analysis that can help you go a lot further in understanding your most important advantages.
The questions associated with a SWOT analysis include the following:
When you answer these questions, you can then have a good understanding of your company’s strengths and weaknesses as compared to your competitors. This will ultimately help guide you after you’ve completed your competitive analysis and give you a reference point to return to as you’re further developing your marketing strategies.
Big Fish Local has helped countless companies when it comes to developing and fulfilling comprehensive digital marketing strategies, and a competitive analysis is one of the first steps that we’ll take as we’re auditing your website.
Getting this initial process 100% correct is of course a lot easier said than done, and a competitive analysis from our seasoned specialists will undoubtedly jumpstart your digital marketing campaign and put your business in the right direction towards long-term online success.
So always feel free to contact us online or call us at 614-945-4544 to get in touch with our team and let us know how we can support you as you’re trying to better understand how you can become the “Big Fish” in your industry’s pond!
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