WHY YOU SHOULD MONITOR YOUR COMPETITORS
Many prospective customers will compare you and your competitors before making purchasing decisions. What do you know about your competitors' content marketing and social media strategies? Do you know how your marketing activities stack up against theirs? If not, you may be missing out.
By monitoring your competitors’ marketing activities and doing even a small amount of competitor research and competitor analysis, you can see what your audience and prospective customers see, gain inspiration for your online marketing strategy and more confidently determine what approaches are currently working and not working in your industry.
At An-yal, we prioritize our competitor analysis strategy so we can deliver the best possible marketing plan. Such a thorough process does take time but the advantages are simply too great to be overlooked! Fortunately, for small businesses in particular, there are many competitor analysis tools and research tools available online that save time and are easy to use.
Below we’ve highlighted some of the methods that we use to get an in-depth view of the competitive landscape for our clients. Also, some must-have free tools for small businesses, and others that are quite reasonably priced considering the benefits.
Research their keywords
Your competition will be targeting certain keywords that get them higher rankings when people enter these words into search engines. This goes both for organic and paid search. Use a tool like SpyFu to uncover which keywords your competitors are targeting. Then use their most effective keywords yourself, as well as other keywords they aren’t using, to give your business an edge.
Find out why their SEO rankings are high
It’s important to know how and why your competitors have high rankings and are performing better than you. Compare your keyword rankings over time with those of your competitors by using a tool like AccuRanker. When their rankings are higher than yours, check their websites to see what content is behind their success - it could be blogs, video, guides etc. Consider how you can improve on their strategy to help you rank higher.
Monitor their social media channels
By monitoring your competitors' social media activities and posts, you’ll see what they share, how they communicate with their audience, and the topics that are engaging them.
Use a tool like Hootsuite to track everything your competitors are posting on social media. You can view their content across multiple platforms in streams on a dashboard to stay on top of their social media efforts.
In addition, you can set up streams to alert you to questions and queries that people are asking your competitors on social media. This ‘social listening’ is very effective in gaining insight into the audience’s pain points as well as how your competitor is, or isn’t, solving them. Take advantage of these gaps and learn from your competitions' achievements.
Find out what content is working best for them
Content sharing is a key to getting your competitor good rankings on search engines. See what content created by competitors is getting shared the most on social media. Buzzsumo, for example, lets you input a competitor’s URL to see their content listed in order of social sharing popularity. You can also check content by topic, keyword and brand.
These are just some of the techniques we use to monitor competitors. Try taking advantage of them yourself to give your business every advantage it can get.
An-yal develops social media and content marketing campaigns for brands worldwide. Talk to us about your next project.