The preparation of any successful marketing strategy will naturally include spending some time researching your competitors; to find out what (and how) they are operating in the digital space; what impact they’re making – and most importantly, what methods they are using. This is important as they operate in the same market place as you; and you share the same potential client base.
Once some basic research has been done, you can use the data to monitor and analyse how successful they are in certain areas. In this article I will suggest some useful tools and easy-to-use alternatives in order to help you reach your goal.
The good thing about finding out your competitors’ strategies is that most of the information will be publically available and readily accessible. Listed below are 3 areas you can tap into to glean valuable intelligence on your competitors:
- Their Website: This is the main hub of their operations and is akin to walking into one of their shops – the only difference being that this is a digital representation. Here you can find out almost everything; from what jobs they have on offer at the moment, to any updates on their website. If they are doing something wrong – like no visible call to action on their main areas – use that to your advantage and implement some on your website.
- Email Newsletter: You can usually find a signup for their email newsletter on their website, and signing up to this will give you constant updates about the company, any promotions that they are running, and will provide you a ‘customers perspective’ of the company.
- Follow their social media network: Go and find out their Twitter, Facebook, Instagram or LinkedIn details. Follow their profiles to see how they are using social media as part of their digital marketing strategy, how big their influence is on these networks, and see what you can do better.
In terms of SEO, Majestic is one of the leading websites to check your website or other websites’ backlinks, along with a lot more features. This can be a great tool to see where your competitors back links are coming from, and which websites are providing your competitors with a link to their site. Why not contact the website to see if they will link your website too?
Spyfu is a helpful keyword research and analysis tool – it will find out what keywords are being bid for on Google AdWords by your competitors; along with other features such as a back-link checker, PPC Research and SEO research.
To conclude, competitor analysis should never be ignored when conducting basic analysis; it should be prioritised as it is an important part of your overall marketing strategy. This is a basic guide on how it should be done, but for more in-depth training, why not consider some training courses?