How to Do an SEO Competitor Analysis

how to do an seo competitor analysis

Ever hear 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 on 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 organizations 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 – Having multiple selected Competitor Profiles gives you an average to benchmark current 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 try to do it better while knowing their weakness give you areas to exploit and gain advantage over those areas.
  3. Strategic Advantage – Using the right SEO Competitor Analysis Tools, you can identify what your competitor is doing that works and see vantage points where they are lacking and leverage on it to gain more relevance.

How to Perform Competitor Analysis Using SEO Tools

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 very first step is finding out who your competitors are relative to the priority keywords for your niche. In others words who will show at the top when your prospective clients are searching 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 a tool called SimilarWeb or Serpstat to see top performing domains for paid and organic. These tools can give relevant information like Visibility, Ranking and Common Keywords.

  1. Do a Backlink Analysis

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

  1. Know their Keywords

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

In SEMrush search bar, enter your competitors URL and search. 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.

  1. Check for Keyword Density

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

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

  1. 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 Ubersuggest SEO Tool.

  1. Analyze On-Page Optimization

This should enable you learn how frequent your competitors are publishing content, the types of content and what keywords they’re targeting with these content types.

Some things to look out for include:

  • Headline strategies
  • Content or media types.
  • Video length or word count.
  1. Other relevant Factors

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

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

Conclusion

A good SEO competitor analysis is a continuous process and takes effort to stay abreast with what they are doing. Keep tabs on your competitors and make improvement to your platforms where necessary and in a little while you’ll start appearing among the top on 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, leave us a comment and make sure to checkout other contents.

SEO FAQ:

Search Engine Marketing (SEM) is a procedure where a website is promoted using paid advertising to increase its visibility on the results pages of search engines. The process usually involves incorporating SEO practices.

All things considered; organic SEO is no doubt the best marketing strategy for long-lasting results. This is because the websites that rank high based on their organic SEO implementation and keywords get to enjoy constant traffic, industry recognition and so many other merits of SEO. Websites using SEM & Pay-Per-Click (PPC) on the other hand have to spend funds in order to get targeted traffic and the moment the payment stalls, the traffic ends. In the end, you get to decide what is best for your campaign. If the aim is to get fast traffic to your website, then it is best to start out with SEM while also working on your SEO for the site simultaneously. If you hope to set up an online business on a long-term basis without funds available for marketing campaigns, then stick to just SEO.

On-Page SEO refers to the SEO practices you can implement for the content on different pages of a website to enable their optimization for certain keywords. The aspects of these pages that can be optimized include meta titles, headings and subheadings [H1, H2], meta descriptions, body, correctly formatted URLs, image alt texts, etc.

Off-Page SEO is all about getting backlinks to your website. Backlinks can be described as references or links from other websites to your site. When many websites link to the content of your website, it allows search engines to trust your website as an authority in the subject. Your site ranks better when popular websites link to it on their pages.

There is a plethora of reasons why SEO is important. Some of the reasons include:

  1. Search engine users looking for specific content are more than likely to click any of the top 10 suggestions in the search engine results page (SERP). If your website constantly appears among that list, you will generate more traffic and conversions or sales.
  2. Good SEO gives users a comfortable experience when they visit your site.
  3. Your website’s trust is guaranteed when it consistently appears in the top results pages of search engines.
  4. Users who come across your website while looking for content are likely to share it on their social media handles. This spreads growth for your website and will eventually affect your business positively.
  5. SEO can help lift your business over your competitors. For instance, if you’re selling a common product or service that can be obtained from other websites, the platform that is best optimized will likely make more sales and boast more customers or clients.

After making all the necessary changes to your website and optimizing it as best as possible for search engines to pick up, it can be quite disheartening when you don’t see results after a couple of months. The truth is SEO takes time. Research, analysis and content production are all phases that you have to spend time on while infusing SEO on your website. At least, that’s an aspect you can control on your part. Search engine like Google takes time to identify your website among the several billions of pages out there. When you make changes to your website, it takes time for Google to analyze and recognize it. The same thing happens when visitors start trickling into your website and the traffic starts coming in. According to a Google webmaster video, the results of an SEO campaign can vary from 4 to 12 months. That looks like a lot. We know. However, there are many variables that come into play to determine how quickly you see results and by results we mean the web traffic coming to your website. Some of these factors that can determine how quickly you see results include relevant keyword topics and quality content, site design, website domain age, bounce rate or the time a user spends on your site, location, competition, your response to trends and updates and how swiftly you make relevant changes. When you consider all this, then you’d realize that as long as you want your online presence to continue its growth, SEO practices should be a continuous process. The moment you witness an early spike in your web traffic, you should maintain that growth and not stop because if you do, your competitors might overtake you on search engine results pages and you’d end up losing new potential customers. If you insist on getting traffic much faster, then employing a PPC/SEM campaign is your best choice.

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