"An army wouldn't charge into battle without sending a scout ahead."
"A hotel corporation wouldn't build a hotel without checking for other hotels in the area."
Competitor analysis is crucial to any good digital marketing strategy as the market is constantly changing. New employees, new innovations and new interests all spark changes in any business. With the majority of purchase decisions now being based on online research, the world wide web has become the most highly competitive marketplace.
Some facts and figures.....
In 1998 when Google first launched it would process 10,000 queries per day. In 2006 this had risen to 10,000 per second. Most recently in 2016, Google was recording 40,000 search queries per second, resulting in almost 4 billion searches per day.
What type of data do you need?
- Reputation – does the competitor have a good reputation? Is there good feedback from customers?
- Web Presence – are they easily found online?
- Quality – is the product or service being offered of good quality?
- Responsive – with a huge amount of internet traffic now being mobile, does your competition cater for this with responsive web design?
- Site speed – there is nothing worse than a website that takes forever to load.
- Navigation – is the website clear, does it guide the potential customer to the businesses main objective?
- Content – is the content of good quality? Is it shareworthy and is it being shared?
- Ranking – where does the competition rank on the search engines? If they are above you, what can you see that makes them stand out?
- Links and Referrals – are there links from industry specific, credible websites?
- Indexing – is the content being indexed?
- What type of campaigns are they running?
- Are they using Remarketing?
- Presence – can they be found easily on Social Media?
- Content – is the content interesting and relevant?
- Sharing – is the content being shared and business page being shared?
- Creativity – with social media being such an enormous space, is your competition thinking outside the box? Do they stand out and if so, how?
Stating the Obvious
It may be obvious but who are your competitors? Be realistic, if you are a small business then you are unlikely to be able to compete with a large corporation. Regardless of the financial and resource based restrictions, most large companies have a whole department or agency working towards their Digital Marketing goals. There is always scope to be ambitious, just don’t focus energy on the wrong thing.
What do we compete for?
The main things to compete for are:
- Brand visibility – make sure you are the first thought for any potential customer.
- Content discoverability – having relevant, interesting content that is read and shared will boost any business.
- Trust – many people use the same company or tradesperson because they have built a relationship with them, they trust them and know they will do a good job.
- Engagement – you want to be the business who attracts website visitors, blog comments, facebook likes, retweets, survey answers.
- Conversions and Leads – ultimately the main goal is to generate business.
Business A may not have the best product but be competitive in price. Business B could have a great product but no online reviews. Business C could have a great product, great website but no advertising. By reviewing and analysing the competition businesses are able to see where they need to excel and fit strategies around achieving goals.
For more information on Competitor Analysis as part of a Digital Marketing Strategy please contact WSI today.