Competition is an unavoidable and healthy element of any activity. Without competition, mediocrity would settle in and there would be little to no incentive to innovate. However, since there is competition, all parties are forced to excel in every aspect of their business. They must excel in order to steal valuable market share and build enduring customer loyalty. According to Forbes, performing competitor analysis allows you to keep improving and also provides you with an effective benchmarking system so that you will know if your marketing tactics are paying off or not. In order for this to happen, a business first has to identify its core competitors, discover why they are getting better search engine ranks, and decide what strategy to adopt to get ahead of them. Some practical tips on how to dominate competitive analysis for SEO include the following:
Figure out your core SEO competitors
The vast majority of business owners can easily name their main competitors within their industry. However, it is likely that they will end up with a confused look on their face if you ask them who their main SEO competitors are since the two are not always the same. It is also possible that you may have contended with several SEO rivals who operate outside your business niche while competing for superior SERP rankings.
The key SEO competitors are those online businesses that rank in the first Google search results page for the target keywords or phrases, regardless of whether they actually compete with you for the same business. You will likely have separate and distinct competition lists with very little overlap if you operate in several niches. Thankfully, the process of identifying your key competitors is as simple as examining the search results page for keywords. You can even use a specialized competitor analysis tool to make the process that much easier.
Evaluate the strength of competitors to dominate competitive analysis for SEO
Before you jump into tweaking your on-page SEO, it’s a great idea to analyze the SEO strength of your competitors. Theoretically, you can outrank any competitor for any keyword in any niche. However, it may not be practically feasible due to the huge amount of resources required to make it happen. To avoid wasting your resources, you should make use of a competitor analysis tool. Doing so will help you figure out the total domain strength of your competition. You can then analyze specific factors like domain authority, domain age, and location.
Doing so will also allow for analysis of search engine indexing, backlink data, catalog listings, the volume of traffic and social signals. Doing so will help you discover any weaknesses that you can potentially exploit. It is far more productive to focus on competitors who rank well for niche keywords but have a lower overall score since outranking SEO for strong competitors can be tough and expensive.
Identify new keyword opportunities to dominate competitive analysis for SEO
Term frequency-inverse document frequency analysis (TF-IDF) is a handy method for elevating the quality of your current content with keywords that your competition is using. The complicated-sounding expression is derived with a simple equation: take the number of times that the keyword appears in the content and multiply it by its expected frequency. This method allows you to optimize your web pages better for SEO and also discover keywords with low competition that you may have overlooked. Analyzing TF-IDF may show you that many of the top-ranking pages you are competing against have many terms and phrases in common. If you are not already targeting these keywords, you can gain a lot by adding them to your existing content. You can do the same by building new content to accommodate them to boost semantic search relevance.
Analyze on-page optimization and content
The analysis of the on-page SEO of your competition using any common analysis tool will unearth lots of meaningful information that you can use to boost your SEO. Factors such as content publishing, content types, and target keywords can be extremely helpful when tweaking your own content strategy. You should also focus on factors like metadata, title tags, title keywords, title length, internal linking tactics, etc. This list goes on to include anything that appears to be the foundation of their SEO success.
Through figuring out the things that your competitors are doing well, you can then adjust your SEO strategies fo better performance delivery. Content analysis is also essential. Monitor the topics being published, word count or length of videos, the extent of details, etc. They are all valuable signals that Google bots pick up as they crawl websites.
Explore the backlink profiles of the competition
The number and frequency of backlinks are important signals for search engines when it comes to page rankings. You should find out where your core competitors are getting their backlinks and what sort of content is attracting said backlinks. You can improve the quality of relevance of the content on your website so that you become an equally attractive site with high domain authority. Backlink analysis is simply impossible via manual operation. That being said, you should invest in a proper competitive analysis tool.
Make note of Site Architecture and User Experience
Google is known for constantly updating their algorithm. Many of the recent changes involve the overall user experience of your site. Other focal points include quicker page loading and improved mobile experience among others when compared to your competition. If your website is unresponsive or has a confusing navigation setup, you should take steps to address them right away. Essential steps include the following: optimize your sitemap, prioritize load times, and ensure search intent is paramount.
Competitive analysis is anything but a one and done task. Remember, your competition is not asleep and doing everything that they can to rise to the top of SERPs. You need to keep on monitoring them across the core factors. Furthermore, you also need to stay on top of Google updates.