A competitive website analysis is the study of your competitors’ online presence to understand their marketing details and identify potential opportunities for your business. By understanding what strategy your competitors are using, you can develop a more effective advertising approach to attract new customers that will set you apart from the competition.
Analytic tools, organic and advertising research, and social media tracking are three important ways to successfully conduct such analysis. But how can it help your business? How do you do it the right way? Let’s find out.
Why A Competitive Website Analysis Is Necessary
Analyzing your competitors’ online presence will tell you what tactics work best for other businesses in your market. The analysis will show you how to make your website more attractive to customers and, more importantly, to Google.
For example, a large company might use quizzes to generate leads. A website analysis will reveal this, and using the same strategy can give you an edge over your competitors.
Competitive analysis can also tell you what your competitors are not taking into account. It can reveal the weaknesses in their marketing that you can exploit.
5 Steps to Making An Effective Competitive Website Analysis
Analyzing the competition means exploring the gaps in your competitors’ strategies. You can decide where to invest your time and money in content creation based on such analysis. And you can fully optimize your website for search engines.
Good! But the point here is to develop a systematic approach to getting it right! The following steps will help you do that.
#1 Identify & Make a List of Your Competitors
The first step in analyzing a competitor’s website is to identify it. But depending on your strategies and priorities, you may do it differently. There are three key sources where you can find helpful information:
- Known direct competitors in your market.
- Google to search for relevant keywords
- Specialized software and online tools such as Semrush and SimilarWeb
After identifying your competitors, try to learn as much as you can about them; create a company profile for them and use a unique and systematic algorithm. To make this profile, you can compile the following factors:
- Web resources such as the website URL
- When the company was founded, who founded it
- Names of the senior executives
#2 Investigate Their position
The second step is to analyze the websites you should start positioning. In this step, you need to look at what each company says about itself on its website. You should also find out how they see themselves compared to the rest of the industry.
You can also pay attention to the company’s language on their website. This will give you an idea of what kind of language your competitors think is best in this context.
#3 Pinpoint Their Target Segment
Once you have a basic understanding of your competitor’s business, you can analyze their marketing strategies. To do this, you need to determine your competitor’s target segment, which can be tricky. Why? Because it’s not always easy to tell from their website or public marketing materials. Still, there are some clues you can consider.
In the case of B2B companies, for example, you need to know what kind of customers your competitors are targeting. But what’s the easiest way to find out? Simple: by looking at their customer list. Typical B2B companies tend to speak too proudly about their customers to build trust with new prospects.
Another way is to look at your competitor’s language when talking about their target market. For instance, if they use phrases like “startups in the technology sector,” you can assume that’s their target segment. Another helpful tip is to check customer reviews to get an idea of their current customers.
#4 Categorize Their Site Performance & User Experience
Up to this point, we’ve mainly focused on making an accurate company profile for each of your competitors. Now we will get an objective picture of the quality of each competing website. We want to determine their strengths and weaknesses, starting with website performance and overall usability.
When evaluating these website parameters, there are several elements we should analyze, including
- Speed of the website
- Layout; is the navigation easy?
- Fonts (plural!); are they well-formatted and easy to read?
- Images: Are they appropriately sized and optimized?
- Is the website user-friendly? Mobile-friendly?
- Was it created based on a template, or is there serious work behind it?
Try to compare the different websites quantitatively, including yours, to make things more objective. For example, you can use a scoring system (a scale from 1 to 5) for each aspect of website performance.
#5 Go Through Their Sales Funnel
Look at your competitors’ marketing funnels to see how effective they are. Try to consider everything from email marketing campaigns to their retargeting efforts. The best way to understand your competitors is to experience them as users yourself.
Analyze how the calls to action on each web page are structured and try to understand the complete path, i.e., the logic behind them. Click on them and see where they take you – but don’t forget to take a deep breath before each click! Make a note of everything they use at each stage of the funnel:
- Type of copy
- Digital assets (e.g., images, videos, audio)
- Designs and developments
Extract information from anything that tells you how they generate leads and convert them into paying customers. If there is a pop-up window with an email form, fill it out, submit it, and check the email (or emails) you receive. You should explore every rabbit hole you can find. This will give you a comprehensive picture of the company’s marketing strategy.
If you want to grow your business, analyzing your competitors’ websites to gather as much data as possible about your competitors should be part of your marketing strategies. This can help you (re)define your digital marketing goals and find weaknesses in your business.
There are many growth opportunities that you may not have thought of yet. The above steps are just the first ones. They need to be completed!
Need more information? Get in touch today; we’ll help you complete your competitive journey.