14 Dec Online Marketing: Competitive Analysis and Planning
Where do our competitors advertise? What keywords, banner ads and landing pages do they use? How well are they doing with their website and social media traffic? Questions like these are pondered by most business owners, and these can be answered by conducting an in-depth competitive analysis. There are many variables that come into play when determining which brand will succeed, but the ultimate goal is to analyze the current efforts, discover the strengths, weaknesses and opportunities, and understand what the market leaders are doing in the space. The categories below will guide you in creating a competitive analysis and planning report based on each company’s insights and results provided by certain marketing tools.
Website traffic refers to the amount of data sent and received by visitors to a website. The server computer records every request for a web page, allowing its operators to determine which pages get the most attention. Web traffic analysis gives businesses concrete and reliable information on the interests of their customers. If you cannot generate targeted visitors to your site, there is a low chance of getting sales. Unfortunately, many website owners do not understand the importance of search engine visibility, which leads to web traffic. One of the tools that can help track your competitors website traffic is RivalIQ. It displays clear charts and analytics of which company receives the highest and least number of organic search traffic volume, paid advertising traffic and over-all web visits. Other useful tools include Google Analytics, Spring Metrics, Woopra, etc.
With the right SEO strategy, content marketing approach and the understanding of your audience, you can surely grow your traffic organically (without paid advertising).
Keywords are what we type in when we are searching for companies, products, services, and answers on the search engines. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) best practices recommend that you include relevant keywords in a number of high-attention areas on your site, everywhere from the titles and body text of your pages, to your URLs, to your meta tags to your image file names. Developing a list of keywords is one of the first and most important steps in any SEO initiative since it is directly connected when it comes to running a winning search marketing campaign. KeywordSpy, RivalIQ and Google Analytics are some of the useful tools for keywords search. If your keyword strategy has been crafted properly and your content is nicely optimized for the right keywords, then it will increase your chances of being found online.
Social media engagement
Social media plays a great role in a business for it strengthens the interaction and affinity between a brand and its consumers. Speaking of a useful tool, we can make use of RivalIQ as it can provide clear representations of the companies’ social audience, activity and engagement. Now, how do we know if it is the right interaction and engagement? How a brand interacts with its target audience is at the heart of its social media campaign. The greater the frequency and quality of these interactions, the better the relationship between brand and consumer. Additionally, interaction, engagement, and content that address the customers’ needs will garner better results in an organic search. When you strengthen your social media engagement, always think that it’s like socializing in real life. If you want to talk to someone, you go talk to them, or give them a reason to talk to you. If you want engagement, you talk, you listen and then you respond. As simple as that! But not all businesses, receive good engagement just by following those tips. This is then where an online marketer comes in. With great content, effective targeting of audience, and a consistent approach, there is no doubt that your social media engagement would improve.
Analyzing paid advertising and landing pages used
Analyzing your competitors’ paid advertising and landing pages helps you form an effective marketing strategy.
With SpyFu, it is possible to view your competitors’ paid advertising and landing pages used. You can see which keywords they are using, and also which advertising channels they are using. This are very powerful information that can give you insights into what your strategy should be in order to counter your competitors’ actions.
Backlinks are links that are directed towards your website. It is important to conduct backlink analysis for it confidently dives into your website’s link profile and will help your company’s SEO strategy. Moz Open Site Explorer is one of the effective tools to be used on this. It identifies the total number of links and unique domains, fresh or incoming links and the quality of the backlinks. Discovering total link count is a good start to understanding how competitive a website is. However, it’s easy to spam a high link count with tactics such as sitewide links, article directories, blog comments, etc. So, total link count definitely doesn’t correlate strictly to a strong link profile, or high rankings. In contrast with the link count, unique domains or root domains is believed to be better metric than link count, since multiple links from the same domain are typically considered to have a drop off in value. Identifying fresh links is also important, but always keep in mind that seeing thousands or even hundreds of links built per day will surely raise a red flag to Google. There are only two main reasons for this: one is perhaps suspicious link building activities are underway or perhaps, the website itself is well known. To note, quality backlinks are links with quality and are coming from trusted or reputable sites, while toxic backlinks are derived from bad-neighborhood, spammy, low-quality websites which will surely bring negative impact to one’s website.
Some businesses think that it is best to just go out with their own plans and ignore the competitors. But it shouldn’t be that way! In today’s competitive era, there is no doubt that we need to conduct competitive analysis in order to greatly shape our business strategies, capitalize opportunities and at the same time, minimize the impact of threats from competitors.