Understanding how your competitors manage to appear first in search results can help you improve your SEO strategy and outperform them.
This requires using competitive intelligence tools that provide clear insights into your competitors’ web marketing strategy. Identify their strengths and weaknesses so that you can take advantage of them by adjusting your own strategy.
In this article, the experts at the Montreal web agency My Little Big Web present you with the 10 best competitive intelligence tools to stay ahead of your competitors.
Monitor your competitors with SEMrush
The SEMrush tool gives you access to the following data:
- Keyword analysis: you can analyze search volume, cost per click, competitors’ positioning on a given keyword, or search trends:
- Competitive research,
- Website audits,
- Backlink analysis,
- Search engine results pages (SERPs).
Knowing you and your competitors’ position on a keyword can help you identify which queries to focus your efforts on to stay competitive on Google.
Outperform your competitors with Ahrefs
Ahrefs is an SEO tool that will give you access to a wide range of information including:
- The exact keywords that your competitors are positioned on in organic search results and the volume of traffic they generate,
- External links that you or your competitors gain or lose,
- The mentions related to the keywords you are following,
- A comparison between the performance of your competitors and your own website.
This tool therefore will help you understand why your competitors are better positioned than you on certain requests and how to outperform them.
Analyze the paid search of your competitors with SpyFu
In order to perform true competitive intelligence and increase your website traffic, you need to go beyond SEO analysis and also look at paid advertising data.
According to a study on PPC (pay-per-click), the first 3 paid advertising spots would get more than 40% of the clicks on their website. Bearing in mind that on average, these clicks generate between 2% and 6% conversion.
The most important thing you can do to generate a good conversion rate with Google Ads campaigns is target the right keywords. You can invest large sums in this paid advertising, but if you don’t target the right keywords, it will only be a waste of money.
This is where SpyFu comes in. This competitive analysis tool will help you discover the most profitable keywords of your competitors, both the keywords on which they advertise for a fee and the organic search keywords.
Analyze your competitors’ performance with QuickSprout
The QuickSprout competitive intelligence tool, created by Neil Patel, will help you learn more about your competitors’ strategies and position yourself ahead of them on search engines.
When you enter your URL, you will be shown the following data:
- A report of your social network performance,
- Your most popular URLs and the number of shares they have on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Pinterest.
- The most used keywords on this site,
- External links,
- Indexed pages,
- A ranking of the best performing websites in your domain.
The most interesting part is that you can do the same analysis with your competitors’ URLs.
Analyze your competitors’ traffic sources and much more with Alexa
Alexa is a company created by the giant Amazon and provides you with in-depth analysis of companies online.
This tool will give you access to the following information about your competitors:
- The number of pages linked to their websites,
- The average loading speed of their web pages,
- Keyword research and related data (relevance, trend, etc.).
Alexa will also segment the traffic sources into four channels:
- Organic search traffic,
- Social traffic (from social networks),
- Traffic from links,
- Direct traffic.
This will help you understand which channels are the biggest source of traffic for your competitors.
Discover the domain authority of your competitors with MozBar
Developed by Moz, the Chrome extension MozBar allows you to check the domain authority of any website.
What is domain authority? It is simply a website rating system, created by Moz.
The domain authority measures the strength of a website and is rated between 1 and 100, with 100 being the highest score, which represents excellent SEO performance.
Moz will take into account various factors such as the number of external links and the quality of content in order to assign this score to a site.
Compete with SimilarWeb
SimilarWeb is a highly versatile competitive analysis tool that will help you determine the following information about your competitors:
- Traffic sources, broken down into four channels: Organic search traffic, paid traffic, social traffic and direct traffic,
- The similar pages they visit.
In addition, SimilarWeb lets you discover which topics attract the most traffic and which topics attract very little. This can help you define the themes that you should focus your efforts on when writing blog articles, for example.
Use the BuzzSumo competitive intelligence tool
BuzzSumo is a competitive intelligence tool that focuses on content strategy on social networks.
This tool will help you improve your strategy by generating new content ideas and monitoring both you and your competitors’ performance on social networks.
To do this, simply enter:
- a keyword, to discover the most effective posts related to the keyword as well as the total engagement generated by these posts on social media.
- a domain name, to find out who mentioned this website and the total engagement that the post has generated.
You can then determine which topics appeal to the audience and use them as a basis for your own social networking strategy.
Track the performance of a site or query with Social Mention
Social Mention is a social network research and analysis tool that groups together content generated by Internet users into a single information flow.
With Social Mention, you can track and measure in real time what people are saying about you, about a product or service, or about your competitors, for example. The results are extracted from more than 100 websites such as Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Google or Reddit.
Each report provides you with data including:
- The best keywords on the topic,
- Popular hashtags,
- The general feeling of Internet users (positive, neutral or negative).
This tool also lets you see what people are saying about your competitors.
Find the most relevant keywords with Google Keyword Planner
The free Google Keyword Planner tool is part of the Google Ads advertising platform. It will help you optimize your website’s SEO by retrieving information directly from Google.
This tool also allows you to analyze other data, such as:
- The average number of searches recorded for a keyword,
- The degree of competitiveness of an ad for a keyword,
- The lowest and highest amounts that advertisers paid for the top-of-page bid for a keyword, etc.
Even if this tool doesn’t give you precise information about your competitors, it is still very important when it comes to competing by positioning yourself on the most relevant keywords.
If you want to improve your marketing strategy and maximize your brand visibility, these competitive analysis tools will be very useful.
Moreover, this strategy requires a great deal of knowledge and time and in the business world, time is money.