Competitive Analysis is an absolute necessity in regards to search engine optimization. Knowing where your competition stands will allow you to assess your own site, and take the most appropriate action. Without knowing the secrets, mechanics, and operations of your competitor’s sites, search engine optimization becomes significantly more difficult. Of course, knowing every last detail of your competitor’s marketing strategy isn’t necessary. However, having some basic knowledge of what they’re doing is definitely a requirement.
Firstly, one needs to discover what their competition is doing right. If their strategy is truly effective, then it may be beneficial to emulate it. Secondly, one needs to discover what their competition is doing wrong – this is what you’ll truly need in order to thrive. Faults in your competition’s SEO strategy should be exploited to the fullest extent, as it will reap the best results.
There are a number of things one can do in regards to investigating their competition. As stated in, Keyword Research & Analysis, Market Samurai and SEO PowerSuite are great pieces of software for this. In a number of different integrated tools, one can research backlinks, the types of sites linking to your competition, domain age, keywords, and other data that may help get a leg up on your competition.
Market Samurai has an excellent competition analysis module. It shows you the top ten results for the given keyword, and all of the metrics important to optimizing a website. For convenience, the cells of this page are color coded to detail how strongly that metric is currently helping the respective site. Market Samurai also allows you to enter in custom URLs to compare alongside the top 10 results.
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SEMRush and Alexa
SEMRush and Alexa offer quite a few things for the SEO enthusiast and professional. For competitive analysis, they allow you to view the top ranking keywords for any URL you chose, should they have any search data on SEMRush and Alexa. Here is an example on SEMRush and Alexa for a popular yoga related website, to maintain the theme of our examples.