When I was first starting in business, I made the mistake of copying what my competitors were doing. Big mistake! Not only did I not stand out from the crowd, but I also wasted a lot of time and money chasing after their success. I quickly learned that if you want to be successful online, you need to conduct your own competitor analysis for website.
By taking the time to understand what your competitors are doing well (and not so well), you can develop strategies to improve your site and give yourself a leg up on the competition.
Competitor Analysis for Website
Competitor analysis for website is an assessment of the strengths and weaknesses of your competitors, relative to your own business. This can be done by conducting a SWOT analysis, which looks at your competitor’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats.
The goal of a competitor analysis is to help you identify and exploit your competitor’s weaknesses, and avoid their strengths.
What is Competitive Analysis?
Competitive analysis is done by collecting and reviewing data about industry stats, competitor performance, and details about their products and services. Having this information allows you to identify market shifts before your competition and allows you to adapt and succeed.
In the digital age, having the most accurate data available allows you to stay ahead of the competition and thrive.
When you take a data-driven approach to your competitive analysis, you’re able to identify opportunities quickly and make decisions that will help you become the ultimate competitor in your market.
Having a solid GTM strategy is essential for any business, and by taking a data-driven approach to your competitive analysis, you can lay the foundation for success.
This blog is going to show you exactly how to analyze your competitors so that you can gain the upper hand and avoid those “why didn’t I think of this” situations.
Why is Competitor Analysis Critical in Market Research?
The companies that have a large share of the market aren’t going to give up their share easily.
If you want to increase your market share, then you’d better be ready with information on your competitors’ weaknesses and strengths.
Before launching a new product or service, it’s important to understand the competition. A traditional SWOT (Strength, Weakness, Opportunity, Threat) analysis is a great place to start.
Competitive analysis is critical in market research because it allows businesses to identify both current and future trends in their industry. This information can then be used to make strategic decisions about product development, marketing, and sales.
Additionally, a competitive analysis can help businesses to identify opportunities for growth and expansion.
When you know what your competitors are up to, you can adjust your campaigns and marketing strategy accordingly. This way, you can launch quick rebounds, maintain your position, and eventually take the lead.
Relying on guesswork won’t help you develop an effective marketing strategy. Instead, you should base your decisions on accurate, relevant data.
The Basics of Competitive Website Analysis
The first step to a competitive analysis of your industry is to collect and analyze information about your main competition.
A systematic approach to competitive analysis allows you to understand the relationships between the different areas of your competitor’s strategy.
To get started, you’ll want to research your competitors. This can be done by visiting their website, reading their blog, and subscribing to their newsletter. You’ll want to take note of anything that makes them unique.
Once you have a good understanding of their business, you can begin to analyze their marketing strategy.
- What are their goals?
- Who is their target audience?
- What channels are they using to reach their audience?
- What type of content are they creating?
- What kind of campaigns are they running?
By answering these questions, you’ll start to get a feel for what’s working well for them and where there might be opportunities for you to improve upon their strategy.
Compare your website to your competitors’ websites by systematically collecting the same information and recording it in the same way.
If you can’t find any information on a specific point, make a note of that too. This could be valuable information in itself, as there’s probably a reason for the lack of data.
11 Steps to Effective Competitive Website Analysis
Some companies may be bigger and more well-known than they actually are. At the same time, there could be smaller, less-known companies hiding in the more obscure corners of your industry.
This step-by-step process will help you identify whether the person calling you is a legitimate threat or not.
1. Identify and Analyze Your Competitors
Find companies offering products or services in the same field as yours, and classify them into different categories.
You can do so based on the below three things:
- Target audience
- The problem they solve
- The product they offer
There are two kinds of competition: direct and indirect.
Your main competitors are businesses that are targeting the same audience as you, offering a solution to the same problem, and are in the same product category.
When conducting competitor analysis for your business, it is important to seek out other eCommerce sites or brands that have similar products. This will help you to identify qualities that you want consumers to associate with your brand.
Companies that are indirect competitors are those that target the same audiences and offer solutions for the same problems, but with different product offerings.
A surgeon offering the same procedure as yours, but for feet, would be considered indirect competition.
Make sure you keep an eye on your main competitor but don’t forget that there may be other smaller players in the market that could become more important in the future.
Companies are constantly expanding into new markets, especially B2B businesses.
2. Create a Company Overview
Now that you understand who your competitors are, it’s important to understand what they do.
Create a company overview that includes:
- Basic information: Size, location, employee count, and year established.
- Financial information: Stock value, owners, investors, acquisitions, mergers.
- Market position: Brand awareness, product categories, etc.
Make a note of any strengths or weaknesses you can identify. Keep adding to them as you keep working through your competitive site audit.
3. Analyze Your Competitors’ Website
Pay attention to the design, content, and search engine optimization techniques they use. Do they favor a certain color scheme or font?
Are they using targeted keyword phrases in their ads? What are the features and benefits they highlight?
Also, pinpoint what makes each competitor unique and which features are common to all. This will give you a good idea of what your competition is offering and how you can improve upon it.
Every company has a unique selling proposition, or USP, which sets it apart from its competitors. This is usually conveyed through the company’s website.
Be on the lookout for what’s missing. If all of your competitors offer a free trial and only one doesn’t, this could be an indicator that this company or service sees itself as being more elite.
As you continue, you’ll either find evidence supporting or refuting this assertion.
4. Analyze Their Go-To-Market Strategy
Through your competitive website analyses, you gain insight into how each of your top competitors differentiates themselves.
To get a better sense of your competitor’s strategy, you’ll want to study their approach to generating new sales. To do this, you’ll need to put yourself in your audiences’ shoes and go through their sales funnel.
Check out a few blogs, subscribe to their email lists, and test out any free trials or freemium products they have.
5. Identify Buyer Personas and Buyer Journey
To get a full picture of your competition, you need to look at their customers.
By looking at competitors’ websites, you can figure out which age groups and demographic groups they focus on. You can also determine if certain genders, geographies, or languages are important to the overall customer experience.
Understanding what your prospects expect in different circumstances can help you tailor your approach.
Research the factors that affect a person’s mood, such as their knowledge base, attention span, and their ability to absorb new information.
If a website has downloadable material, such as eBooks, download them.
Sign up for its service to get additional insights on their communication. Or, purchase a product to test out its features.
6. Understand Product and Pricing
Research the competitors in your industry. What products do they offer, and at what price?
A general price check will tell you what people are willing to pay for your product or service.
Keep going. Now, analyze how prices are arranged.
Are there different pricing tiers? What features are included?
Does the company offer discounts and giveaways? You can also check the refund policy by looking at the pricing and Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) sections of the website.
By looking at your competitors’ pricing structure, you can better understand their target audience, their content strategy, and their marketing message.
7. Read Customer Reviews
If you want to gain an understanding of how your customers perceive your competition, check out how they rate them.
If you’re in an industry that has comparison sites, you may be able to find reviews on competitors’ products and services.
Keep in mind that these reviews are done by affiliate marketers (who promote products for a commission), and they may be biased.
They test out the products themselves, so they’ll tell you the features that the competitors aren’t too keen to share.
The usability of your product can tell you a lot about the success of your marketing strategy. It tells you how well the product is positioned and if people are using it.
8. Identify The Most Effective Marketing Channels
If you’ve already completed the above, then you’ll know which marketing channels the company is using.
You will have received the company’s email marketing campaigns. You will know if the company has a blog, what topics it addresses, and how frequently it posts.
Find out if they use PPC.
Enter the brand name, product, or other highly relevant keywords into Google’s search engine. If there is an icon with the word “Ad” next to the competitor’s link, this indicates that paid search is being used.
Finally, don’t forget to investigate the affiliate program (if one exists) and search traffic levels.
9. Track and Measure Social Media Presence
Keep an eye on your competitors’ social media presence and see how engaged their followers are. Check to see how many reviews they have on their platforms as well.
What types of posts are most popular with your competitor’s followers, and how do they engage with the content? Do they simply like or comment on posts, or do they share them with their followers? Are there any influencers that sponsor your competitor’s content?
Are there any sponsors that endorse them?
10. Identify Competitors’ Keyword Strategies
Keyword search is the act of searching for keywords that people use to search the web. This is essential for PPC, content creation, and search engine optimization.
To remain competitive, it’s important to understand the products that people are actually looking for. This can be done by researching competitor keywords that are used on their website.
Depending on what type of product you’re selling, there may be several relevant keyword phrases that could increase traffic.
11. Measure Key Engagement Metrics
Once you have completed steps 1-10, you are ready to start analyzing your data. Create a spreadsheet to keep track of the data you have gathered on your main competitors as well as your own company and product information.
By understanding how your engagement metrics compare to those of your competitors, you can see where you fit into the landscape and identify your challenges and advantages. This is what we call benchmarking.
It’s important to use a variety of benchmarks when analyzing data, such as looking at your bounce and conversion rates, as well as which channels are driving the most traffic to your website.
This is the best way to get a view of who is winning traffic share and who is losing consumer interest. Set goals for yourself to beat these numbers.
If you want to stay ahead of the competition, it’s important to regularly conduct competitor analysis for website. By taking the time to understand what your competitors are doing well (and not so well), you can develop strategies to improve your own site and give yourself a leg up on the crowd.