Competitive analysis gives a clear overview of where you stand against the competition. Find out how you can be steps ahead of your competitors in this article.
To achieve success in business, you need more than just a great product or service. Today’s marketplace is teeming with other businesses offering the same, or if not, a better option than what you’re offering.
This is why it’s essential to assess your competitors; to better understand what you’re up against. What are their strengths when it comes to marketing their products? Do you see anything lacking in the features they offer? How do you convince your target market that yours is better than the others?
Competitive analysis provides the information you need to get a leg up against your competitors. Indeed, researching the competition is just as important as building the business itself. It’s one of the keys to achieving business success in any industry.
That said, we’ll shed light on what entails a competitive analysis and the steps to gain insights about your competitors. Let’s start.
What is Competitive Analysis?
A competitive analysis is a research process that aims to collect and review information about competitors. It gives you an idea of who your competitors are—their strengths and weakness that may pose an imminent threat to your success as a company.
It is an in-depth study that showcases the best strategies that work for them and pinpoints missed opportunities that they haven’t exploited yet.
Why Should you Conduct Competitive Analysis?
A competitor analysis can provide optimal benefits for any business. It allows you to:
- Identify competitors in the industry
- Measure performance against competitors
- Offer new products or services
- Discover new business trends
- Spot any gaps in marketing strategies
Competitive Analysis: 5 Actionable Steps
Know your competitors
Start your competitive analysis by identifying who your competitors are. First, research on the top brands in your market. You probably are familiar with most of them. However, don’t rely too much on what you already know.
List down all your leading competitors to ensure that you don’t miss any one of them. Use SEO tools such as SEMrush and Ahrefs to check out their high-performing content and the type of products that works well for their brand.
Your competitive intelligence report should highlight the kind of competitors you have. A direct competitor is someone who offers the same products and services as you. In the world of fast foods, McDonald’s fierce competitors are Wendy’s and Burger King.
Additionally, companies that offer similar products or services in the same niche are known as indirect competitors. Say, your company sells women’s skinny jeans while a competitor might offer straight-cut variety for women. Yes, they’re not the same, but they target the same market.
Another type of competitor is the tertiary competitor. They are not competing with you per se. However, they may offer goods or services that could be a replacement. For example, customers looking for better gains in their investments might look into an investment company’s equity stock offering than a traditional bank’s deposit savings.
Analyze your competitor’s marketing strategies
To do this, examine your competitors’ marketing efforts and see how they appeal to their target audience.
Does their marketing strategy include content marketing where they regularly post blogs, images, and videos on their website? Is there a landing page on their site that drives their lead generation efforts? Do they follow any SEO best practices as part of their digital strategies?
Select a sample of their high-quality content that covers different topics or categories. This gives you a picture of what your competitors are sharing to drive engagement and visibility with their audience.
Another key area to consider is pricing. A reasonable pricing strategy enhances how much you can sell and creates stability for your business. Also, prices determine your target customers, the value your competitors place on goods or services, and its relationship to quality.
As part of the competitive analysis, you can start by benchmarking prices from competitors. Check out their prices on websites or from their physical stores. With direct competitors, you can bring down the prices. Doing so may compel competitors to keep up with the competition, which drives innovation.
Check out their level of engagement with customers
In your competitive research, include how your competitor’s content resonates with their audience. Gauge how they respond through the number of likes, comments, or shares on their content pieces.
Does their target audience respond well to Facebook than on Twitter? Are there any topics that click well with them? Does any of their content trigger an emotion that drives the audience to act?
These questions and a whole lot more reveal a wealth of information on how your competitors prioritize engagement on their brand.
Apply the SWOT Analysis
Now that you have the information you need, what’s next?
This is the perfect time to perform a SWOT analysis. It’s a brainstorming process that stands for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats. Competitive intelligence should identify your SWOTs to have a glimpse of how your business performs against your rivals.
A SWOT analysis provides a baseline for a company’s competitive analysis. Make sure that you have a specific goal in mind to set a clear direction for your strategies. Without it, all the data collected will provide no impact on your analysis. One way to do this is to create a project in that your competitive analysis has the answer.
Be Steps Ahead of the Competition!
In today’s competitive landscape, you simply can’t afford to sit on one’s laurels. Otherwise, you will lose a significant slice of the market pie to your competitors. Conducting a competitive analysis is key to understanding the competition and position your brand better in the market.
It allows you to identify any gaps so you can work on improving your strategies. By following these steps, you’re on your way to gain an advantage over the competition.
If you need help creating a winning marketing plan that’s competition-ready, we’ve got your back. At Full Scale, we have a team of content writers, graphic designers, and marketing specialists to deliver strategic results for your marketing goals.
Get your FREE consultation today and start writing your success story.