SEO | April 30, 2015

Becoming Bond: How to Spot, Analyse (and Beat) Your Online Competitors

bond

Have you always admired James Bond’s suave and debonair way of dressing, his way with the ladies or maybe simply his ability to drink so many darn martinis? Well, sadly we can’t help you with that (keep dreaming) but we can, however, turn you into the 007 of the internet.
Good marketing is all about knowing your competitors: who they are, how they work, what they do well and, of course, how you can stand out from them. So, in this post we are going to hone your sleuthing skills and teach you how you can beat the other double 0’s to become the one that everyone remembers. And don’t forget: It’s not spying, it’s gathering intel!

jamesbondThe Mission

Your mission is to gather information on your business competition without getting caught. But don’t worry, you won’t act alone; you’ll have guidance from your trusty M (marketing agency i.e. us) and a number of digital marketing tools from more than one quartermaster. Good luck!

Digital Competitor Analysis

Determine the focus of your mission 
The easiest way of discovering who your core online competitors are is to Google search for your main keywords. Your competitors are simply the websites that rank above you on the results pages. The less people above you the better, but for in-depth analysis we’d recommend you pick the top 10 results and focus your attention on a third of these.
Now you can begin.
Take a look at their appearance 
A very obvious reason why another business may be outperforming yours is… their site looks better. Customers are likely to spend more time on a site or convert if a business’ site looks aesthetically pleasing, performs well and is simple to use.
If your site takes ages to load and has a poor user experience, you’re bounce rates could be seriously affected.
Take a look under their skirt (not literally)
James Bond may have his remote control cars, false fingerprints and ring camera but we have Google Analytics, Majestic SEO, Moz and Screaming Frog to help us.
In order to rank highly on Google SERPs you must appear an authority in your field. One way of doing this is by building quality backlinks from high domain pages back to yours. It’s like a digital referral scheme!
You can analyse your competitors’ backlinks and highlight possible link opportunities for your own site using the wonderful Majestic SEO.
Your competitors may be doing well because they have a kick-ass digital marketing agency working for them, but we can learn from their successes and failures and help you to make an informed decision about marketing methods that will really work for your business. Plus, the good guy always wins in the end!
Find out how liked they are 
Social media is an essential part of any digital marketing campaign therefore, it is an important factor in any competitor analysis procedure.
Although a company may have a number of social media accounts, focus on the two big’uns – Facebook and Twitter. If these accounts exist they should be easy to locate. All of the best business sites will have social buttons clearly displayed in the first fold of their homepage. If these seem elusive, simply Google the brand followed by ‘Twitter’ or ‘Facebook’. Got it?
Once you’ve found the profiles take a look at how many followers or likes they have, is it more than your business? Are followers engaging with the company? And how many of them are real people?
You can test if followers are likely to be fake in just one click with Twitter Audit.
twitterreal
Then take a look at the tweets. If the competitor is using shortened URLs in its tweets it is likely that you can take a look at its social media traffic. Some social media tools that shorten URLs, such as Bitly, will display a wealth of information including click data in an easy to read chart.
How does your site match up? Could you invest more time on social?

Let Liberty Marketing be Your Back Up

If you’d like a digital marketing consultancy to be your very own M and provide you with knowledge and advice, with professional SEO, PPC and content teams to take the reins for you, Liberty Marketing can help.
The latest addition in the Bond series, Spectre, and Google updates are just a few months away so act quick before it’s too late!
mission
(main image adapted from: James Bond is for Real)

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