In the ancient script of the book The Art of War, General Sun Tzu wrote, “If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.” Let’s face it, business is a war fought over customers, and while it does help to create your own original pitch to the client, studying your competitors will do you more good than any other marketing strategy. So get ready to hit the business battlefield as we give you four reasons to look at what your opponents are doing to boost your Search Engine Optimization (SEO).
Find Out Who The Real Competition Is
No matter what market you are in, there are always professional and dud companies. Looking up whatever service or product you offer and the order that your competitors pop up can give you a good idea of what they are doing to pitch to their customers. Are they paying for ads? Why does it look like they come up first? Take search engines for example. Doing a little research makes it easy to see that Google and Bing are the juggernauts to learn from, while others like Ask or DuckDuckGo obviously aren’t seeing the desired success. That doesn’t mean you only look at the successful competition; ideas can come from anywhere, but the companies at the top of the totem pole are worth more of your time.
Find The Hot Keywords
Analyzing your opponent’s websites or marketing campaigns is arguably the best way to find out what business you’re in. It may sound stupid because of course, you should be pretty well aware of what business you’re in, but are you selling it the same way people are searching for it? Are you a fencing company that’s trying to sell the cheapest fences, the nicest fences, or the tallest fences? Every single one of the keywords accompanying “fences” (cheapest, nicest, tallest) hits a different target market. Of course, you may be in the fencing market, but what type of fencing market are you really in? Looking at what your competitors say they sell reveals the exact keywords you’re competing for.
Social Media Presence
Looking at the enemy’s social media is a great way to see first hand what the interaction is like between the business and customer. Do they post daily? Are they professional or humorous? Our clients constantly complaining about something or is there barely any traffic on their accounts? It’s a great way to see where the bar is set and to enhance the business to customer experience.
The beauty of the internet is that it exposes anything. Most of the time it acts as a double-edged sword. It is pretty tough to hide your own specific keys to success, but you get perfectly clear view of how the public views your competitors. Take a look at the comments to get a grip not only on other company perceptions but the way people look at your field as a whole.
It may feel a little sneaky to plan a business strategy based on your competitors, but remember that Apple didn’t make the first personal computer, Ford didn’t make the first automobile, Edison didn’t create the first light bulb, and Gutenberg didn’t make the first printing press. They all just found someone else’s great idea that could be better, so there’s definitely something to be said for being aware of your competitors’ actions.
Written by Nicole Wilson