How to Conduct an SEO Competitor Analysis in 7 Easy Steps

how to conduct an seo competitor analysis

Ever heard of the saying that goes, “Keep your friends close but your adversaries closer“? This is a typical case of a good SEO Competitor Analysis. Having good knowledge of your competitor’s efforts online will give you valuable insights into what you can do to improve your ranking over them. You get to see what they are doing that works and what they aren’t doing that you can build on.

What is SEO Competitor Analysis?

Competitor analysis is a marketing and strategic process that aims to assess the strengths and weaknesses of an organization. The goal of this process is to identify offensive as well as defensive opportunities and threats to an organization by its competitors.

Using this process to build a profile for an organization’s competition is a sound and must-do corporate strategy and should not be overlooked.

Why do you need an SEO Competitor Analysis?

  1. Industry or Niche Benchmarking – Multiple selected Competitor Profiles give you an average to current benchmark relevance related to industry standards. With this in mind, you have a set record to beat if you want to stand out in the market and be among the top on SERP.
  2. Learn their Strengths and weaknesses – This is finding out what your competitors do and trying to do it better while knowing their weaknesses gives you areas to exploit and gain an advantage over those areas.
  3. Strategic Advantage – Using the right SEO Competitor Analysis Tools, you can identify what your competitor is doing that works, see vantage points where they are lacking, and leverage them to gain more relevance.

How to Do an SEO Competitor Analysis in 7 Steps

Here we will look at how to use some tools to see who the best competitors are and the efforts they use to get there.

1. Identifying your Competitors

The first step is finding out who your competitors are relative to the priority keywords for your niche. In other words, who will show at the top when prospective clients search for products and services like yours?

Using the native Google Search page, you can run a search using a selected keyword list and see who pops up among the top 5.

You can also use SimilarWeb or Serpstat to see top-performing domains for paid and organic. These SEO tools can give relevant information like Visibility, Ranking, and Common Keywords.

2. Do a Backlink Analysis

Head over to and use their free Link Explorer tool to find out what websites link to your competitors. This is valuable information as you can also connect your site to these websites, noting the ones with more than one competitor linking to them. Creating a guest post for multiple competitor-linked sites has a higher success rate than sites linked by a single competitor.

3. Know their Keywords

Here you want to find out what keywords drive traffic to your competitors’ sites. You can do this with SEMrush or Ahrefs SEO tools.

In the SEMrush search bar, enter your competitors’ URLs and search. Then, using the “Organic Research section”, click on the “Positions” tab; this will show what keywords your competitors are ranking for, and you can build a list you can exploit.

4. Check for Keyword Density

Finding the keyword density lets you know how competitive these keywords are and how to use them in your placement strategically.

Using a free tool called Keyword Density Analysis Tool at, you can enter a URL and see a detailed list of your competitor’s keywords.

5. Check for Keyword Difficulty

Keywords with high-difficulty keyword scores require more link-building and are generally tougher to rank for. You can find keyword difficulty score for a keyword with Ahrefs SEO Tool.

6. Analyze On-Page Optimization

 This should enable you to learn how frequently your competitors publish content, the types of content and what keywords they’re targeting with these content types.

Some things to look out for include the following:

  • Headline strategies
  • Content or media types.
  • Video length or word count.

7. Other Relevant Factors

Going further to find out efforts put in by competitors helps in giving a broader picture of what they are doing to gain their rank and relevance. Other factors to check can include the following:

  • Social Media Leverage
  • Site Structure and Design
  • Google My Business Listing


A good SEO competitor analysis is a continuous process and takes effort to stay up-to-date with what they are doing. So keep tabs on your competitors and make improvements to your platforms where necessary, and in a little while, you’ll start appearing at the top of the list for SERPs.

At Crank Digital, we are always glad to help put you improve your search ranking and put you in the eyes of your prospects when they come looking.

We hope you enjoyed this read, comment, and check out other content on our blog.

Read More: How to Do Keyword Research for SEO

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