How to Do Competitive Analysis in a Crowded Industry

by Jennifer Beever

Get Found In The CrowdFor those industries where the list of competitors seems too large to research and your research budget is small or non-existent, there are cost effective ways to analyze the competition.

You can survey your customers to find out which competitors were included in their review. But you can also do an easier and more cost-effective online search to see which competitors come up at the top of the search results and focus your analysis on them.

One reason to focus on competitors who are top online search performers is that, by 2010, 93% of B2B buyers started their purchase decision by doing an online search for suppliers (Booz & Company B2B Marketing Survey). Chances are that the top search performers are getting most of the market share.

To identify your the top competitors online, you’ll need to do several searches. Do some keyword research and find out the most popular words and phrases used by buyers to find vendors in your industry. Often these are by product or service names (for example “car insurance”) as well as general industry searches (“insurance companies”).

You can track the top search performers using a matrix spreadsheet that shows the company names on the left vertical columns and the product, service and company keyword searches across the top.

Keyword AnalysisThe Internet has made information about the competition more accessible for researchers. I often expand the above matrix by inventorying which services and products and modes of digital and offline marketing the competitors have on additional columns across the spreadsheet above. I gather this information from the websites, their social media platforms, from interviews and customer surveys.

So if your marketplace is crowded with competition, don’t feel that it would be a waste of time to do your research. You can always learn something by looking at the top online performing competitors’ websites, social media profiles and other information. Glean what appears to be working for competitors, do it better and then add your own unique marketing strategies and tactics. Once you know the right strategies and tactics, you can surpass your online competitors in search performance as well as the quality product and service offerings in as little as three to six months.

Do you need help analyzing your competition and putting together a strategic and tactical marketing plan that will win market share? Contact New Incite today. We’ve worked with many businesses to provide marketing strategies and execution that result in growth.

Photo from Flickr by James Cridland. Some Rights Reserved.


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